Teachers and staff from the MCH charter school organized a parade of cars on Wednesday to encourage residents of the Waco campus and MCH Boys Ranch who have maintained “shelter in place” for more than two weeks.
Michelle Arocha, principal of the charter school, which is operated in partnership with the University of Texas – University Charter School system, came up with the idea for a teacher parade as a way to spread some cheer and support for MCH youth in residential care who have had their normal schedules disrupted by the protective measures taken against the COVID-19 virus.
“We want the kids to know how much we miss them, so we thought a teacher parade would be a good way to tell them – from a distance – how much we care about them,” she said.
Teachers decorated their cars with posters and streamers then drove slowly past the campus homes honking, waving and shouting encouragement to the youth and staff gathered on porches.
“This parade was a creative way to connect our teachers and staff with our residents during this time of social distancing,” said Trey Oakley, MCH president. “It is another example of our staff going over and beyond for our young people.”
Arocha said the youth have responded well and are keeping up with their classes despite having school in their campus homes.
“We send out daily announcements through prerecorded video to all the home life managers, and teachers have video conferencing chats so kids can log in and ask questions remotely,” Arocha said. “Teachers are also available through email, text and calls.”
Arocha said the students are working on packets that teachers put together the week after spring break. After April 9, almost all schoolwork will move to online curriculum, she said. Laptops will be distributed to students to enable them to log on to the online learning system, Google classroom and other sites to participate in online instruction as well as participate in video conferences with teachers.
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