JASPER COUNTY, Miss. (WDAM) - East Jasper County School District Superintendent Nadene Arrington said the pandemic heightened issues the district had even before COVID-19. She said when the virus hit the state, it hit the district’s way of learning hard and fast.
“Distance learning was definitely a challenge for us, because we basically had to implement it on a dime, the turn of a dime. We did not have a virtual platform,” Arrington said.
She said the district was able to reach their students through Zoom and Google Classroom, but virtual learning only shined a light on another problem.
“The biggest challenge was, because we are not a one-to-one district in terms of having devices for all the children to take home, so that was a challenge for us as well,” Arrington said. “We were not sure of everyone’s ability to connect virtually.”
Arrington said the students learned virtually and through packets from March until the end of the school year. She said with the legislature dedicating $275 million in federal COVID-19 funds for expanding internet to rural areas, providing kids with laptops and expanding distance learning programs, she said this will eliminate many inequities for the students of the district.
“Being able to provide quality education even though students are not in a brick and mortar setting, we are excited,” Arrington said.
Arrington said the funds from the legislature will open up any courses students need, even for college. She added the funds will help the district purchase cleaning supplies and PPE to provide a safe environment for students and faculty to safely return to school.