Teaching & Learning Photos

Struggling to Stay Connected on Maryland’s Eastern Shore as Teaching Moves Online

By Jaclyn Borowski — April 30, 2020 1 min read
  • Save to favorites
  • Print

As teachers across the country grapple with the challenges that come with remote learning due to the coronavirus pandemic, an elementary school teacher on Maryland’s Eastern Shore faces the added challenge of a lack of internet access at home.

Crossing from Talbot into Dorchester County, over the Choptank River, on April 28, 2020.
Karen Ruark, a third-grade teacher in Dorchester County, parks outside her elementary school, South Dorchester School, to take advantage of the school’s WiFi hotspot during the hours she’s teaching.
Ruark has spotty internet at her home on Hoopers Island in Maryland’s Chesapeake Bay.
South Dorchester School, where Karen Ruark teaches third grade, sits empty on Tuesday, April 28, 2020, as education has moved online due to the coronavirus pandemic.
As Ruark works from the parking lot of her elementary school, she’s often joined by her daughters, who are both in high school and need internet access to upload their assignments.
The route to South Dorchester School, where Karen Ruark teaches third grade, is lined with farms and single-family homes.
Dorchester County sits on Maryland’s Eastern Shore, just over the Choptank River.
A portrait of third-grade teacher Karen Ruark outside her elementary school, South Dorchester School, on April 28, 2020.
Despite the challenge of reliable internet, Ruark has been able to make contact with every single third-grader in her class.
A home along Route 50, the main route through Maryland’s Eastern Shore, has posted a series of signs thanking every industry of essential workers, including teachers, as seen on April 28, 2020.
Dorchester County is home to the University of Maryland’s Shore Medical Center. As of April 28, 2020, the county had seen 51 coronavirus cases and two deaths.

A version of this article first appeared in the Full Frame blog.


Commenting has been disabled on edweek.org effective Sept. 8. Please visit our FAQ section for more details. To get in touch with us visit our contact page, follow us on social media, or submit a Letter to the Editor.


Events

This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Teaching Webinar
What’s Next for Teaching and Learning? Key Trends for the New School Year
The past 18 months changed the face of education forever, leaving teachers, students, and families to adapt to unprecedented challenges in teaching and learning. As we enter the third school year affected by the pandemic—and
Content provided by Instructure
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Curriculum Webinar
How Data and Digital Curriculum Can Drive Personalized Instruction
As we return from an abnormal year, it’s an educator’s top priority to make sure the lessons learned under adversity positively impact students during the new school year. Digital curriculum has emerged from the pandemic
Content provided by Kiddom
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Equity & Diversity Webinar
Leadership for Racial Equity in Schools and Beyond
While the COVID-19 pandemic continues to reveal systemic racial disparities in educational opportunity, there are revelations to which we can and must respond. Through conscientious efforts, using an intentional focus on race, school leaders can
Content provided by Corwin

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Teacher Jobs
Search over ten thousand teaching jobs nationwide — elementary, middle, high school and more.
View Jobs
Principal Jobs
Find hundreds of jobs for principals, assistant principals, and other school leadership roles.
View Jobs
Administrator Jobs
Over a thousand district-level jobs: superintendents, directors, more.
View Jobs
Support Staff Jobs
Search thousands of jobs, from paraprofessionals to counselors and more.
View Jobs

Read Next

Reading & Literacy Spotlight Spotlight on Literacy in Education
In this Spotlight, evaluate the possible gaps your current curriculum may have and gain insights from the front-lines of teaching.
English-Language Learners Spotlight Spotlight on Bilingual Instruction
In this Spotlight, identify potential gaps in your schools, evaluate dual-language education programs, and more.
Teaching Opinion Wanted: Students to Write About This School Year
Classroom Q&A is inviting teachers to have their students write about their school experiences for publication here.
1 min read
Images shows colorful speech bubbles that say "Q," "&," and "A."
iStock/Getty
Teaching Profession Reported Essay Students Aren’t the Only Ones Grieving
Faced with so many losses stemming from the pandemic, what can be done to help teachers manage their own grief?
4 min read
Conceptual Illustration
Pep Montserrat for Education Week