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Teach For America Detroit helps students stay on track virtually

DETROIT – Even without a global pandemic, keeping children engaged and learning is no easy feat during the summer months.

But this year, Teach For America came up with a solution.

READ: Here’s what Michigan school districts have planned for the fall amid the pandemic

When schools closed down in March, many parents were worried about their children falling behind. Teach For America Detroit took the initiative to teach more than 500 Detroit students online

Jackson Brooks was just learning how to read when the schools shut down.

“I wanted to continue to reinforce things that he was learning from his regular teacher throughout the school years,” said Jasmine Brooks, his mother. “I was like yes. He’s absolutely got to be signed up. Me and his dad, we’re like he should do it.”

So they signed Jackson up for Teach For America Detroit’s summer learning institute -- a there week course that was all online with just one teacher for each child.

“It’s more personal, even though we are not face-to-face,” said Dezmin McCoy. “It allows for some more for you to share more of your personality because we’re in our own personal spaces.”

McCoy is the summer enrichment director at Teach For America Detroit. She said the program was more beneficial for the students because of the one-on-one interaction

“I was very shocked,” McCoy said. “I’ve been teaching for several years now and I’m just I was shocked to see such rapid growth.”

The weekly family workshops encouraged more parental involvement to help the parents understand what their child was learning.

“We’ve been doing education the same for so long that the school closures and going virtual really shook things up for everybody,” McCoy said. “I think people are more open to changing things now.”

McCoy said if your child is going to be starting remotely this fall, it’s important for parents to stay involved but also have an open mind about it. It could be a great opportunity for your child to become more flexible.


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