In the middle of the abrupt changes to the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year, edtech companies offered resources and access to help educators, students, and parents make the best of at-home learning.
Here is insight from a select few of those edtech leaders.
Based on what you’ve seen over the past couple of months, what are the major challenges that schools and districts have faced in the transition to online learning?
Chaks Appalabattula, founder and CEO of Bloomz: Kids were forced out of school and sent home with hopes that parents could help teachers in the few months before the end of the school cycle. In our experience talking with educators, I think one aspect that came up as of paramount importance, and was maybe taken for granted by schools and school districts, was the ability to communicate home. In early March, we decided to announce we’d be allowing any school facing closures to jump on our Premium platform at no cost, so they could communicate with students and parents.
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Brett Woudenberg, CEO of MIND Research Institute: Math is the most challenging subject for parents to teach their children. A majority of American adults — up to 93 percent according to this study — experience math anxiety. Plenty of parents were not truly mathematically equipped when they left school themselves. They can read to their kids at home, of course, but teaching math is another thing entirely.
In the short term, the shift to a distance instruction model is creating setbacks in student learning, and our most vulnerable and underserved students are disproportionately affected. Looking ahead, more students will be behind overall when they return to schools. The disparities between students will be more pronounced, too.