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Photo credit: Michele Griffin P'22, 25Packer has made every effort to maximize in-person learning since the fall. As this pandemic has shown, remote learning has had to remain part of every family’s experience at various times during the 2020-21 school year.

For children, the biggest challenges of remote learning, according to Jeff Kauffman P’29, P’33, are the lack of steady, face-to-face peer interactions and the ever-present risk of technology failures. Tati Nguyen ’84, P’25 lamented the loss of teachers’ “usual, over-the-shoulder access to their students’ work. Students are more ‘on their own’ to figure things out.”

Photo credit: Tati Nguyen ’24, P’25

For parents, knowing all the experiences their kids have not been able to have this past year—and wondering about the impact—hits hard. Balancing the competing demands of their own responsibilities and those of their children has also been difficult, especially for working families and single-parent households.

But the vast majority see blessings too. “Covid-19 has been devastating, and I’ve lost a loved one,” said Mary Park P’30. “But having my daughter with me has been a silver lining to this terrible pandemic.”

Photo credit: Audrey Weinberger P’30, P’33

Angela Faloye P’25 appreciated that remote learning has given her more insight into her son’s learning, and that the reduced commute has given the family more time for sleep, study, and bonding.“We’ll miss the opportunities to peek into Noah’s day and see him dancing on Zoom or thinking hard on a math problem,” said Tricia Lentini Himot P’32. “He is new to Packer, and I think we’ll miss being the fly on the wall as he makes new friendships and discovers new subjects he likes.”

As Jeff put it: “Is remote learning busy, stressful, and loud at times? Sure. But the time we’ve spent together this year has been wonderful, and I will miss it greatly.” 

More reflections and photos from Pelican parents:

Photo credit: Tricia Lentini Himot P’32

Photo credit: Shannon Portell P'28, '29, '33


All Phillip’s teachers have been wonderful, and teaching remotely is not easy. I have a better understanding of why he leaves Packer each day with a smile on his face!

— Joel Lasher P’30

Photo credit: Ali Schippers P'32, '35

Photo credit: Joel Lasher P'30

Photo credit: Monica Figueiredo P'25, 27


In our house, the solitude was a positive thing, accompanied by quiet and coziness. When remote learning ends, Clio is going to miss independent reading with the help of her furry brothers!

— Pam Brown P'30

Photo credit: Ellen Yang P'33

Photo credit: Amanda Jones P'30, '32        

Photo credit: Fern Ring Elkind P'28, '30

Photo credit: Patricia Runcie-Rice P'33, 31, 29

We appreciate the remote program, as it provides daily structure, consistency, and continuity of a quality education. We get to witness the “classroom” first hand and see that our daughter is having fun learning, is engaged with her teachers and peers, and has built friendships in class.

— Ellen Yang P’33

Photo credit: Bessie Oster P'33, 31

Photo credit: Audrey Weinberger P’30, P’33

Photo credit: Amy Westcott P’30, P’27

Remote learning has shown us how kind and patient our teachers are. We feel lucky to have them in our child’s life during this time when uncertainty and new norms can feel overwhelming.

— Tricia Lentini Himot P’32

Photo credit: Katherine Todrys P'33, 30

Photo credit: Jennifer Roux P'27, 30

Photo credit: Dawn Bradford P'29, 33

Photo credit: Jeff Kauffman 'P29, 33

Photo credit: Pamela Brown P'30

Photo credit: Amy Westcott P’30, P’27

Photo credit: Michele Griffin P'22, 25

Hopefully the upside to this entire experience is that these kids will be immensely resilient and creative, and that they will embrace life fully once it goes back to whatever kind of “normal” lies ahead. 

— Michele Griffin P'22, 25

Photo credit: Mary Park P'30


Read more:

Packer and the Pandemic

Lockdown/Downtime: Faculty and Staff Covid Hobbies