When schools closed on March 13, it seemed like the world was spinning. Providence Schools we’re trying to figure out distance learning, get meals to families, and best support their students. Our students and families had Inspiring Minds to turn to for help. We remained open, virtually, and 100% of our staff continued to work through the crisis to ensure they had continued access to our staff and volunteers to navigate the situation, reading materials for distance learning, and provided ongoing academic skill development opportunities.COVID-19 public health emergency is having a severe impact on the children we serve and their families. We understand that our students may not have access to quality books or materials to complete their distance learning or to continue reading independently.
97% of families of students we serve are considered economically disadvantaged and 50% of our students are English Language Learners. This extended time away from structured classroom learning and not having access to quality reading books and materials will only expand the achievement gap between Providence Public School students and their peers.
Inspiring Minds’ volunteers are delivering book bags, prepared by our friends at Books Are Wings, and school supplies to students in 10 Providence Elementary Schools. So far, we have made a difference in the lives of over 700 students!
Now, more than ever, they need the support of a caring mentor. And, with the additional challenges of learning from home, assistance from a supportive adult who understands their classroom goals and objectives is critical.
We are connecting virtually with our volunteers, our families, and our stakeholders to plan for our future. And, COVID-19 is not our only challenge. Our district is in a turnaround, with state control of our schools and a new school superintendent. There will be a new plan for Providence in the coming year and we’re participating in virtual meetings with the district. Our different normal will not just be about public safety and health. There is a ton of planning to do. Inspiring Minds has stepped in to help during these unprecedented times.
In the midst of the current pandemic, it can be difficult to navigate up-to-date and relevant information! Here is a list of resources for students, parents, and teachers (updated, as of October 2020):
COVID-19 Fact Sheets, translated in English, Spanish, Portuguese, French, and Creole.
Providence Schools reopening website, with comprehensive information in both English and Spanish.
Health & Safety webpage, including video messages from Superintendent Peters on air quality and social distancing protocol.
Providence School’s Draft Reopening Plan, released on July 31st.
Back2SchoolRI, a website created by the RI Department of Education to keep everyone informed about district plans and changes.
RIDE webpage for COVID-19 updates and resources.
RIDOH webpage for Pre-K – 12 students and staff, regarding COVID-19 test
Have You Heard…
The class was very good today. When they were doing stations, they listened well and that was really nice. I’m glad to say that most of them are getting comfortable with me. Every time I have to roam around the room to check up on different kids, some of them always ask me to sit with them or ask me not to leave. I find it really cute when they randomly give me hugs too.
The most meaningful part of this experience to me is the experience itself, and everything that comes along with this experience. I like it because now it gives me a chance to figure out what I enjoy and what I can pursue later on as a career.
I saw progress with one child I work with. He spoke up in front of the class for the time. A very proud moment for me.