Lincoln CLCs still serving students, families

The COVID-19 pandemic hasn’t stopped Lincoln’s Community Learning Centers from continuing to serve their students and families.

"I am so proud of all of our school community coordinators and lead agencies for immediately shifting from our in-person daily programming to connecting with families and students, troubleshooting and solving basic and immediate needs, and keeping students and families connected and supported,” said CLC Director Nola Derby-Bennett. “Our goal continues to be to provide support to students and families so that they can be successful in school and at home. This really is what full service community schools are all about."

The numbers back that up:

  • 1,560 phone calls made to families to check in and connect to resources
  • 2,361 supplies and materials dropped off or in grab-and-go form. Materials include: activity kits, trees (yes, they delivered 50 trees to families on Arbor Day), books, crayons, snacks, chalk, socks, school supplies and stomp rockets
  • 180 virtual clubs created
  • 24 read-alouds recorded
  • 14 WiFi hot spots delivered to family homes
  • 225 meals delivered to homebound families
  • 297 students attending in-person CLC at off-site locations, such as Willard Community Center, Northeast Family Center, Belmont Recreation Center, Calvert Recreation Center and Malone Center
  • 847 hours of professional development
  • 1,537 formal hours of planning for summer and the 2020-21 school year
  • 2,288 hours of Zoom meetings
  • 47 parent engagement virtual meetings

But the numbers don’t tell the full story. Derby-Bennett asked CLC staff members from sites across Lincoln to share their favorite stories of serving students and families. Here are some examples:

  • “CEDARS CLC (Clinton and Hartley elementary schools) has done monthly care packages to our families. The care packages included hygiene products, school supplies, clothing, etc. When dropping the packages off, our families came out to tell us how great it was to receive this and see us.”  
  • “Since Culler Middle School closed, I have been working out of the Malone Center. During this time, I have created, implemented and am overseeing a program that supports remote learning, fun, and safety for children of parents who are essential workers. I have also been delivering activity bags for my CLC students and Culler students in general.” 
  • At the Northeast YMCA (Pershing and Elliott elementary schools, Mickle and Lefler middle schools), the first week that we started the grab-and-go curriculum, we sat by the windows all day and watched families pick up the kits and leave sweet, chalk messages for us. Every time someone new stopped by to grab a bag, we all got so excited. It was so fun to see our students and see people actually take advantage of what we were providing.”
  • “We have been able to provide care for children of essential care workers without missing a beat. At Northeast Family Center we are serving 22 students every day and they are all participating in their daily remote learning and class Zoom calls. We are facilitating 18 hours of student Zoom calls with their classes each week. We actually had to hire an additional staff person just to help manage the students’ Zoom calls!”
  • “By creating a Prescott Community Learning Center group on Facebook I have been able to connect families to community resources, educational activities and club leaders. Although it has started small I envision this becoming a vital resource to families when we return to school and they are looking for more information regarding clubs.”
  • “I think the best one happened on Monday, May 11. The Boys & Girls Club started our dinner program for families that served 650 meals. The location was close to Park Middle School so some of my North Star families needed to have the meals delivered. Myself and some volunteers delivered the meals.” 
  • “I think another great piece of this has been having the high school students still wanting to remain in contact as we've continued our ‘after-school’ time through Google Classroom and Zoom. I've been able to connect with close to 150 North Star students.”

Published: May 14, 2020, Updated: May 15, 2020

Food distribution at Boys & Girls Club CLC