NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) - Safety and a good education are two of the most important things Portia Sabin wants for her 9 year old son this school year. 

“I live with my 83-year-old father. And if my son is going to school every day and coming home, I don’t feel like my dad is necessarily safe,” Sabin said. 

He’s on his way to the fourth grade at Julia Green, a Metro Public School. Hearing the news the district’s allowing kids to participate in virtual learning is a relief, but she’s also worried about the ripple effects of COVID-19, and how it’s impacting students.

It’s why she decided to get her son a tutor. 

“I think parents, we’re all talking about how no one has ever had to do this before and so it’s really difficult to try and figure it out,” Sabin said. 

"Students have been behind, even before the pandemic. Students have needed academic support. Now more than ever,” Thrive Tutoring Owner Katy Schmitt said. 

Schmitt says she’s noticed a large increase in calls just over the last week. Parents looking for tutors. 

“I”m also hearing a lot of ‘Gosh, my kid was just hitting the ground running, we just had a good set up going, and figured everything out,’ whether it’s with my students IEP or 504 plan or just in general, they were just kind of getting going and feeling good. And then March hit and everything sort of just went out the window,” Schmitt said. 

Schmitt says she’s jumped into the world of student management by building a team of teachers to support students, while following CDC guidelines. 

“Sending teachers into the home to manage multiple children as they are engaging in their virtual learning. To make sure they understand the directions. They’re interacting with the teacher. They’re able to have a little bit of online help in case they have a question that pops up,” Schmitt said.

Jennifer Johnson, Director of Communications at the Learning Lab and Gateway Academy’s also seen an uptick in calls.  

“What we’ve seen is an increase because there are a lot of kids that have autoimmune disorders that prevent them from safely re-entering,” Johnson said. 

So social distancing, while making sure kids stay ahead, is important now more than ever. 

“I think our students will continue to go...barring any kind of regulation from the government. IN MASKS..until it’s safe,” Johnson said. 

Click here to visit Thrive Tutoring's website and here for Learning Lab. 

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