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New program to connect RPS students with resources they need for virtual learning

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Posted at 12:01 PM, Nov 16, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-16 12:01:31-05

RICHMOND, Va. -- The City of Richmond and Richmond Public Schools are partnering to ensure students in Richmond Redevelopment & Housing Authority (RRHA) communities have the resources they need for virtual learning.

The program, called the Virtual Learning Project, is a community engagement response to ensure RPS students and families have what they need for a productive day of learning.

Under the new program, a Community Connector will be responsible for checking in with each household and student to ensure they are prepared to learn each school day.

“Considering the expansive network of support the city, school district and nonprofit community offer, sometimes the most valuable resource for families is a trusted navigator,” said Mayor Stoney. “This program will employ neighbors to point families in the right direction and keep children engaged.”

The Community Connector will also offer support to parents, engaging students, and help students gain access to resources like online programming, meal distribution, and tutoring sessions.

City officials say the Community Connectors will focus efforts in the six RRHA communities.

The Virtual Learning Project comes one month after data revealed that virtual class attendance had decreased during the COVID-19 pandemic. The data revealed the highest number of absences were recorded among 13 elementary schools and one middle school.

Richmond Public School Superintendent Jason Kamras said the fact that the absences is happening more at the elementary level is an indication that the cause was adult supervision issues.