Parents sound the alarm as YCSD remote learning drags on
The strike between Youngstown City School teachers and the district is entering its third week, with no end in sight.
Contract negotiations failed once again Wednesday, as there's still disagreement on the Academic Distress Commission contract language.
As remote learning continues for the 4,000+ students in the district, more parents and community members are getting involved.
"Parents need to open up and say something about what's going on," explained Sadie Muhammed, organizer of Wednesday's town hall at Wean Park in Youngstown.
The town hall welcomed parents of the Youngstown City School District who wanted to discuss ongoing issues with the current online learning plan.
While Superintendent Jeremy Batchelor says there are teachers and administrators on the other end of the learning platform, there's concern students are only falling behind.
"They're already behind as a district," Muhammed added. "You have to do something. Because what's going to happen, the teachers are going to be extremely frustrated when they do go back because these kids are still in summer mode."
Parents are concerned if students aren't in school or extracurriculars, they could end up in other situations.
"I think the crime is attached to all of the inconsistencies with the educational achievement," one man said representing the local NAACP.
A handful of parents 21 News spoke with refuse to send their children to online school. Another group of parents is concerned about the quality of education their kids are receiving through this online learning.
"These children who have autism, ADHD, mental illnesses can not learn from an iPad," one mother who sends her children to YCSD.
Many parents in attendance are also teachers in the district. They said they feel guilty acting as both a parent and educator seeing their kids struggle.
"My kids are sitting at home sleeping and they're not being benefitted by any of this," another woman added. "And I'm in the middle because I'm a parent and teacher."
"The changes of not being able to go to school are affecting her so mentally and so badly because the school district won't solve it and won't just reword something in a contract," another woman added.
There was added concern from some parents at the town hall that their child's college credit classes could be affected by the strike. Another woman explained she only speaks Spanish and can not help her children through remote learning.
Parents who attended the townhall were mad that other parents were not present. About 50 parents and teachers attended the townhall. The school board was invited but no one was present.
Negotiations continue Thursday at 4 p.m. at East High School.
The Mahoning County Democratic Party will host a fundraiser on Thursday evening to raise money for the Youngstown Education Association strike fund.
That's from 5 to 8 p.m. at Westside Bowl.