Survey: Parents concerned children will be behind due to school closures, poor internet access

Source: Sacramento Bee

This was also published in The San Luis Obispo Tribune and The Fresno Bee.

Nearly 90 percent California parents surveyed are worried about their children falling behind academically due to school closures to help stop the spread of the coronavirus, according to a new poll released by student equity advocates.

The survey, which took place between March 26 and April 1, included responses from more than 1,200 parents from across the state.

“Communicating effectively with parents when schools close is no easy task, and teachers, principals, and district administrators deserve a lot of credit,” said Elisha Smith Arrillaga, executive director of The Education Trust-West. 

“But this is a time to accelerate our work. The poll results show that parents want consistent contact with their children’s teachers and are still lacking equitable access to academic resources. Right now, we must step up planning to ensure teachers and school leaders have the resources they need to stop learning gaps in their tracks when schools reopen.”


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Karla Fernandez

Communications Manager

Karla Fernandez (she/her/hers) joins Ed Trust–West as a Communications Manager with over 11 years of experience advancing social impact initiatives.

Karla started her career as a teacher at Chicago Public Schools and UIC College Prep. After teaching, Karla joined United Friends of the Children to support LA County’s youth in foster care as a college counselor. Through Leadership for Educational Equity, Karla also served as a Policy Advisor Fellow for the office of a Los Angeles Unified School Board Member. She solidified her interests in policy analysis and quantitative research during her time with the Price Center for Social Innovation, the Housing Authority of the City of Los Angeles, and the USC Presidential Working Group on Sustainability. Before joining The Education Trust–West, Karla was the Associate Director for the Southeast Los Angeles (SELA) Collaborative, a network of nonprofits advocating for communities in SELA.

Karla holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Anthropology from the University of Chicago, a Master of Public Policy from the USC Price School of Public Policy, and a Graduate Certificate in Policy Advocacy from the USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism. Karla is based out of southern California and is passionate about using data analysis, communications, and digital strategies for policy advocacy and social justice efforts.