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LEARNING ON THE GO | Mobile classroom helps Immokalee students and parents

Posted at 10:08 PM, Dec 21, 2023
and last updated 2023-12-21 22:08:05-05

IMMOKALEE, Fla. — To help migrant students and parents, Collier County Public Schools is pushing ahead with it's Migrant Education program in Immokalee.

The CCPS Learning Express, which is part of the program, provides additional educational resources to families.

"It has a great impact on closing that learning gap for students, making those gains," said Marlene Dimas, a Learning Express worker. "They go to school and have that support, and they come here and have that extra support.”

The bus works as a classroom on wheels, helping students with homework, ACT prep and more.

Juana Franco and her high school student, Alvin, said they go to bus often.

"No todos estamos preparados (We're not all prepared). No todos sabemos íngles (We don't all know English). Este es cómo ayudar nuestros hijos, por eso, buscamos el bus (This is how we help our kids by looking for the bus.)," Franco said.

Franco says it's hard for parents who don't speak the same language their student's homework is in.

"Es que darnos estrés. Es muy feo (It gives us stress. It can get ugly.)," Franco said. "Está fustrada en la casa sin poder ayudar los niños. Ellos lloran y nosotros también (They're frustrated at home with out the ability to help them. They cry and then we cry.)."

To bridge that gap, the program offers English lessons for parents like Juana.

"Para los padres para aprender íngles para tener una conversación mejorar tu íngles, gramática (For the parents to learn English and to have conversations to improve your English and grammar,) she said. "Este bus tiene de todo (This bus has it all)."

The bus operates every day for three hours and will stay open over winter break, except for Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, New Year’s Eve and New Year's Day.