Collier schools, parents wrestle with virtual learning tech as students return to class

Reporter: Rachel Cox-Rosen Writer: Joey Pellegrino
Published: Updated:
Back to school in SWFL. (Credit: WINK News)

Virtual students in Collier County have had to work around technical difficulties going into this unconventional school year.

While more than half of Collier public school students walked back into the classroom this morning, home became the classroom for many others.

Olivia Angeles’ two children, preschooler Sofia, and fourth-grader Liam, got off to a smooth start.

“I feel like he’s less anxious being surrounded by familiarity, and it is a little different for him,” Angeles said of her son, “but I feel like if he asks me a question it’s easy for him to say ‘mom!’ We just signed up in Webex. We just waited until 8:30, everybody was there and they just started saying good morning!”

β€œIt’s kinda lonely because I don’t really see my friends, but it’s just my gut saying that,” Liam said. “But I’m doing great.”

But for some, the first day did not go as planned.

Jannelle Scott’s daughter, Marley, couldn’t do schoolwork all day because of scheduling issues.

“The courses are different, in a different order and some are missing,” Scott said. “I think it’s a bit of a mess, but at the same time I think everybody’s in the same boat, everybody’s trying to figure it out. I think the school is trying really hard.”

Collier Superintendent Dr. Kamela Patton called for patience, saying the weekend outage of the CenturyLink chat service put them behind.

“So what we say to those parents is ‘Hang tight, we’re working with the company all this past weekend, they’ll be ready to go,” Patton said.

Collier County Public Schools says anyone having problems with the virtual learning program Canvas should email canvas@collierschools.com.

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