Right now parents are scrambling to put together “pods” of learners to form groups

Right now parents are scrambling to put together “pods” of learners to form groups. These groups are still figuring out their vision – Are they following public/private school virtual schedules and curriculum? Teaching students as homeschoolers and therefore need curriculum? Trying to accomplish a hybrid by keeping kids logged into their home school while homeschooling on the side?

Educators are being approached by parents to take on the lead role in these groups. Parents haven’t budgeted for private education, so everyone has a different idea of how and what and who to pay.

Before starting a “pod,” consider that there are MAJOR logistics to work out:

1. Has every family committed for a certain length of time? You can’t pull kids out in the middle if the group’s infrastructure will break? Where does that leave the other kids or the teacher/group leader?

2. If students are following their regular school’s curriculum and the pod leader is supposed to support them but the group has kids following public/private school live taught instruction on different zooms, those kids need headphones. How will the teacher/tutor/pod leader/parent be able to adequately support students whose online classrooms they can’t hear?

3. How will liability be addressed? What if the teacher/tutor/pod leader or a student/family member gets sick? How will the group operate a “Plan B”?

4. How will curriculum be curated for mixed age and ability learners? One teacher/tutor/curriculum curator typically spends 30 mins prepping for each hour of instruction. For learners with different challenges, abilities and learning styles, further customization may be needed. Is that time built into the price?

5. How will the curriculum progression be documented? Will standards be tracked and a transcript issued?

6. How will the tutor/teacher/pod leader be compensated for any benefits they may be leaving behind? What job security is in place if the group pulls out to go “back to school” at some point in the year?

7. What if the teacher/tutor/pod leader gets sick? What is the transition plan for a substitute?

There are so many options right now, and many parents are choosing what sounds good to meet the immediate need. Consider though – the need is longer term. Students need CONSISTENCY, COMPLETION AND NURTURING right now. They are coming back to school stressed and out of practice. It’s important to have all of these logistical kinks worked out BEFORE the year starts so everyone can be super successful!

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