Many living rooms were re-transformed into classrooms Thursday, as Corpus Christi’s public schools, and other districts around the Coastal Bend, settled in for the first day of the new school year.
Just like the end of last school year, the new term started remotely, making Back to School 2020 unlike any before.
“It was definitely different,” said Marilyn Clark.
Clark’s three kids attend Gregory-Portland ISD schools. Like other districts, GPISD had more time to prepare for remote learning than it did last spring. So did parents. It was time Clark and her family took advantage of.
“We did a lot of preparation in advance,” she said. “I made sure everybody’s computers were charged; everybody had headphones that worked.”
Also running a home-based business, Clark finds herself starting the school year juggling responsibilities.
“It took some pre-planning, and adjusting schedules, but so far, we’ve made it work today,” she said. "We’ll see when the classes get a little more complicated."
Other parents don’t have the same time concerns.
“I feel for the parents who are working and need the extra support,” said Sarah Stevens. “Even myself, I find it difficult.”
Stevens has kids in middle and elementary schools in CCISD, and has the time to help her kids however they need it.
“I’m a stay-at-home mom; I do have the flexibility of being here with them,” she said. “However, having multiple children it’s difficult, because they both need my attention.”
Stevens’ biggest problems on the first day of school were technological.
“Mostly login issues,” she said. “My middle schooler has several courses -- he’s got seven, eight classes -- so he’s continuously logging in.”
Both parents said their districts seemed more prepared than they were last spring.
“It’s a little bit more streamlined, more structured, which is what I think every parent was looking for and needed,” said Stevens.
“This year it seems to be better organized, and the teachers are definitely more accessible," said Clark.
The plan is for schools to open in about three weeks, right after Labor Day.