Salem County church creates ‘learning pods’ for students to attend virtual classes together
A church in Salem County has created a place for elementary school students to attend their virtual classes together. They are calling it a “learning pod,” and it has become so popular that they are hoping to add a second.
The pod is located inside Woodstown Presbyterian Church and is set up almost like a mini classroom.
"When we went all-virtual, obviously it put a lot of working parents, and even not working parents, in a position where they had their kids and work and things like that. So, we just saw a need in the community,” says Pastor Eryn Mera.
The pastor says that the pods are a socially distant place for the students to learn.
“We decided to open one pod, which is a 10 to 1 ratio. One adult, 10 children. We were able to service about 14 different families through that because most families are sending their kids here three days,” Mera says.
The organizers say that the learning pods also provide an in-person resource for students to get one-on-on instruction if needed.
Temperatures checks are done daily and the area is sanitized frequently. Students are also required to wear masks.
The church is hoping to add a second pod and is looking for more proctors.
"As a parent, I've witnessed my kids excited to be here on the days they're here and I've seen them kind of be able to spend that time with other kids, and then as a pastor I've witnessed a building being busy again. We've kind of missed that aspect."
The church says they wanted to make it affordable for families. They are only charging $10 a day per child. That money will go to paying the proctor in charge of the students.