Keeping Up In The Classroom

Many Silicon Valley Families Face Challenges in Distance Learning

Some families in the Bay Area do not have internet access or the necessary resources for students to participate in online classes during the pandemic.

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The only way the Cardoza family can go online is on their cell phones.

Even if they had a laptop, the San Jose family would still be able to go online because they are unable to pay to continue internet service.

Gabriela said it's very stressful. Their home is in a cramped apartment complex. The family's living room has been converted into a makeshift bedroom.

The Cardozas share their one-bedroom apartment with another family to help pay the $1,800 a month rent. There is a total of four adults and three children living in the apartment.

Gabriela said their situation is very complicated.

Now school is about to start and their small apartment is about to become a classroom for three students.

The family's story is reminiscent of many others across the Silicon Valley with multiple families living in cramped quarters, perhaps no internet and parents are being tasked with becoming teacher's aides.

In a study conducted over the past year, the City of San Jose found that out of 1 million residents, nearly 100,000 were living without broadband access in their homes.

Schools are now rushing to get families that access in time for the resumption of distance learning.

Gabriela said she does not know how to keep her future kindergartner focused, especially when she won't be able to help her child with schoolwork because classes are in English, a language she is trying to learn.

Meanwhile, the families remain unsure what distance learning will mean for their children as the school year approaches.

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