Lent and Holy Week is a special time at East Boston Central Catholic School (EBCCS) with special events, Masses and a whole host of activities that lead up to Easter Sunday.
However, the COVID-19 pandemic has put life on hold for the staff and students at EBCCS after the school closed earlier last month.
While much focus has been on how public schools are handling the pandemic little has been said about small private schools like EBCCS that rely on tuition, grants and donations to provide a quality Catholic education to its students.
With less resources than well funded public schools, EBCCS Principal Robert Casaletto Eastie’s last remaining Catholic School hasn’t ‘missed a beat’.
“In anticipation of the closure, we had the students take home their books on March 12 and 13, and we mailed packets to families of students who were absent those two days,” said Casaletto. “We conduct multiple “Live Lessons” weekly for every grade level along with other assignments posted in Google Classroom or sent daily to parents via email. This includes our three and four year olds, knowing how important social interaction is at this age. We are using ZOOM, Facebook Live, and Google Hangouts for our “Live Lessons” and upper grades have been and continue to use Google Classroom as well.”
Casaletto said EBCCS also uses multiple online resources such as ABCmouse, Khan Academy, GrammarFlip as well as posting videos to YOUTUBE to keep the school community connected.
“Teachers email families every morning for an update on that day’s expected activities,” said Casaletto. “Our teachers are working pretty much all hours to support the needs of our families via one-on-one ZOOM meetings, email exchanges, phone calls, and various other means of communication. We also provided Chromebooks to families in need of them.”
A month into closing due to the COVID-19 outbreak, Casaletto said he couldn’t be more proud of the students, staff and families.
“Parents, students, and teachers have been amazing so far,” said Casaletto. “The entire school community has worked hard to make the best of a difficult situation.I feel blessed to be a part of such an amazing school community.”
The school also posts regular COVID-19 updates from the CDC and DPH and is available on the EBCCS website via a link to both agencies.