MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - School for Shelby County students kicks of Monday, Aug. 31. Starting Wednesday, essential workers with kids in SCS can register for the child care program the YMCA is providing across Shelby County.
"Essentially what we've done is created options for parents who don't have another option," said YMCA's Senior Vice President Brian McLaughlin
WMC toured Lindenwood Christian Church, one of the 70 virtual learning academies the YMCA of Memphis and the Mid-South has set up to provide childcare to SCS students. It is where students who register will be able to do their online learning.
The YMCA’s virtual learning academies will be open Monday through Friday from 6:30 a.m. until 6 p.m., beginning Aug. 31.
At locations like Lidenwood Christian Church, students will be separated by grade level. Each classroom will have an instructor present while students are logged into their online classes.
The sites will be following COVID-19 protocol established by the CDC and Shelby County Health Department such as limiting the number of students in a classroom, requiring masks, and screening students for symptoms of the virus when they arrive.
The YMCA has been providing childcare for essential workers since March. McLaughlin said they have some responded to some positive cases already this year.
"One child that was in our actual care that was a positive case, we did contact trace that back. The transmission was not in the center," he explained.
If a child is feeling sick or shows symptoms, McLaughlin said they are sent home and are required to get tested before they come back.
The YMCA anticipates 5,000 students will sign up for the virtual learning academies. They are already looking to open more sites.
"Despite all the other things going on. Kids can come to The Y and be a kid, learn how to keep themselves safe, but at the same time still have fun and still support their learning which we know is critical," said McLaughlin.
To register for the virtual learning academy, go to www.ymcamemphis.org/virtuallearning.