Some parents hiring babysitters and relatives to educate their children

Published: Aug. 3, 2020 at 4:06 PM AKDT
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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - With ongoing uncertainty surrounding school fall, some parents are turning to babysitters and relatives to help educate their children.

When Shelby Furtado found out the Anchorage School District would be going online this fall, she panicked.

“I just don’t have enough faith in ASD to go with that program due to the failed distance learning that we had right after spring break, that was a mess, and very disorganized and chaotic” Furtado said. The mom of three works full-time and her six-year-old son Brayden was going into the second grade at Northwood Elementary.

“My husband recently passed away and so the security of having friends and having his teacher and support and different resources that ASD allows, I was totally pulling for them to go back to school, but safely go back to school,” she said.

Staying home is not an option.

“I have to work to support my family, we have a single income now that my husband has passed away,” she added.

She’s now enrolling her son in homeschool through Frontier Homeschool.

“Found a babysitter that my two daughters, my younger daughters go to and she offered to help me homeschool my oldest and she had homeschooled all seven of her children,” she said. A burden that’s now off of her shoulders.

“It never crossed my mind that I would find someone else to teach my child with it not being me, but in my situation being a widow, I think, that’s not an option,” she said. “And you have to do what you have to do in order to just live.”

For Erin Ruebelmann, a mother a four children, it’s a similar story.

“I went the route of advertising for a nanny and for probably the last month I was actively looking and got little response, if any,” Ruebelmann said.

Ruebelmann says she is keeping her three elementary-aged kids enrolled in ASD.

Staying home is also not an option, as she and her husband work full-time.

“My sister and nephew moved into our mother-in-law apartment and she’s actually taking a leave of absence and going to administer their online schooling for the three school-aged kids and we are paying her to do that,” she said.

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