Challenges & Supports
Issac Mota is a 6th grade student at Chinook Middle School. When we visited Issac and his mother Tiffany Scott, to find out how Distance Learning is going, Isaac was in art class via Zoom, using a laptop issued by the school.
“Online school surprisingly has been going well,” Tiffany says. “We do have difficulties with the device camera, which is how Isaac has to turn in his work. The webcam works, but not the camera to take a picture of his work. But, today I’m supposed to take it to the IT staff to see what’s wrong with it and get a different one. I’m thankful that they supplied a laptop. He wouldn’t have one, if not.”
The challenges for this family? “Well, Issac has special needs and an IEP [individualized education program] plan. So, because he has different qualifications that he needs in classes, getting IEP support has been challenging during Distance Learning. The counselor has been really great though,” Tiffany says.
Issac has speech therapy on Mondays. “He has to remember to leave and go to that. So, I set up alarms for him on his phone like a bell to remind him. If I didn’t have that system going, then we’d have a hard time.”
“Teachers are pretty good with communication. But, my son can’t just read something and comprehend it. He has to read it, see it, talk about it, and then he comprehends it. The teachers and class might talk for about thirty minutes, and then do independent study. So, he doesn’t get much one-on-one interaction like he would in person.”
“But, we’re not ready to send him back in person yet due to safety concerns. I am a stay-home mom, so it is easier for me. I keep him in a routine. He gets up like a regular school day. As far as technology, his aunt gave him a mouse that he uses. And my mom is going to get an HDMI cord so he can plug his laptop in to the TV monitor to see better.”
Proposition 1 - Highline Technology Levy
Highline deployed approximately 14,000 devices this spring--many were aging Chromebooks. Proposition 1 on fall election ballots is a technology levy that would fund 11,800 new devices for students and 1,500 new devices for teachers. If approved, Prop. 1 also would pay for updates to classroom technology, cybersecurity, digital training and technical support.
For more information, visit highlineschools.org/technology-levy