COVID19 remote learning is extremely challenging. It's important to note that some challenges are exacerbated by chronic underfunding of Jersey City Public Schools. For instance, our schools lack:
- social workers
- crisis intervention teachers
- math & literacy coaches
Teachers, paras, and remaining staff are left to absorb much of this work in addition to keeping pace with the curriculum and the related work in a school day. Small group instruction and focused social and emotional learning ("SEL") support for kids are examples of what gets cut, and what is missing, from our kids' daily school day when we don't fully fund our schools. Many parents and caregivers are seeing, hearing, and feeling that loss - acutely - during this COVID remote learning paradigm. We are seeing the impact play out real-time as our kids struggle to learn in this all-remote paradigm.
Jersey City Together's Education Team has been advocating for full and fair funding of our schools for the past 4 years, and this year there is a concerted effort to continue this work and also lift up - with particular concern in this moment of isolation & pandemic - the importance of social and emotional learning (SEL). The JCT Education Team includes social workers, youth advocates, education advocates, and parents who are all pitching in.
I'm sharing below the ways that parents & advocates can plug in, in the hopes others will join.
Learn more about this work, share your story, and listen to other parents NEXT WEEK at 2 listening sessions. Sharing from the Jersey City Together website: "Join Jersey City Together's Education Team this Monday, February 1st (7pm-8pm) & Wednesday, February 3rd (4-5pm) via Zoom as we listen to each other about how remote learning is going in Jersey City as well as what your children will need this year & in coming years.
Learn more about the funding crisis in Jersey City on this website., CivicParent. Learn more and get insight into questions like:
- Why is Jersey City underfunded? How did this start, and what is causing the underfunding?
- Why has Jersey City cut teachers, paras, social workers, psychologists, and other critical staff? If these are critical, why are they cutting these positions?
- Who is responsible for these cuts? How can we so something about it as parents, caregivers, and advocates?
- What role does the Board of Education play in Jersey City's funding paradigm? The city? The state?
- What is the school levy? How is it different from abatements?
- And more