August 30, 2020

‘Herculean’ task: San Antonio area schools still working to get every student online

By Alia Malik and Krista Torralva

IT manager Vanessa Aguilera hands out laptops during a drive-through pickup event at the KIPP Academy on West Commerce on Aug. 20. Students from KIPP schools were able to get devices needed for remote learning days before school started.

When the coronavirus pandemic shut down San Antonio schools in March and forced students to begin learning remotely, many worked with paper packets or shared computers with their siblings.

But for the fall semester now underway, area school districts are stressing real-time, virtual interaction with teachers and classmates. Most have jettisoned paper packets. Until students return to physical classrooms in September or October — in numbers still unknown — the revamped online instruction means about 350,000 students each need their own laptop or tablet and reliable internet.

And despite months of effort to make sure they have those things, and staggering numbers of computers distributed since the spring, some students still are without. Click here to read the full story.