Just like every other school in the nation, the classrooms at Queen of Peace in Mesa, Ariz., are empty. The parochial school serves a largely immigrant community, with families tracing their roots to Mexico, El Salvador and Peru, among other Latin American countries. About 95 percent of students at Queen of Peace are Latino, and most of their teachers are Latino and speak Spanish.
The classroom closures have meant that many parents are struggling to balance their own work with their new role as teachers during the Covid-19 pandemic. Parents are overwhelmed with schooling at home, according to Renée Baeza, principal of Queen of Peace. The school is doing its best to ease the transition. “Parents aren’t teachers,” she said. “They know that and we know that. We’re adjusting.”
Students in fourth through eighth grades each had Chromebooks from the school even before the pandemic, Ms. Baeza explained. That has helped in the transition, but it has not been perfect. “We’re going to make mistakes,” Ms. Baeza said. “It’s a learning experience for all of us.”