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Lincoln father living in homelessness struggles to help kids with remote learning

Published: Sep. 7, 2020 at 7:09 AM CDT
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LINCOLN, Neb. (KOLN) - For many parents, helping their kids with remote learning has been a challenge. Imagine having to do that, all while living in a homeless shelter. For one Lincoln father, that’s his reality.

After some recent setbacks in his personal life, Illinois native Jabreco Guyton is living at the People’s City Mission in Lincoln with his five kids. His oldest is 17 and the youngest is only three years old.

He says after finding a new, good paying job, he had no other option but to send his kids back to school in person.

With his new job, Guyton works 12-hour shifts, beginning at 6 a.m. and ending at 6 p.m. Because of this, he’s no longer able to help his kids out with remote learning.

Even though his children had help from tutors in the Mission’s Learning Center, Guyton tells 10/11 balancing remote learning at the shelter wasn’t at all easy.

“When I was looking in the screen, I could see some other kids that were at home, engaged and paying attention. Kids that pay attention to that computer screen and have nothing else going on around them then that’s fine, but if your kids can’t pay attention to it and it’s too much going on around them, then your kids need to go back to school,” Guyton tells 10/11.

He says all he wants is for his kids to have structure and stay engaged in school, and right now, he just isn’t able to provide them with that.

“When I get off of work, it’s late. So, if they haven’t done their homework on their own, then we’re up to like 10 o’clock, and I have to help them go back through things when they should’ve been sleeping around 9 o’clock,” said Guyton.

A few years ago, Guyton used to work at the shelter, so he tells 10/11 he was quite ashamed and hesitant returning as a resident with his kids.

Now that his children are back learning in person, he’s able to concentrate more on work and getting his family back on their feet.

Not only is Guyton working a new job, he’s also back in school himself, taking online classes. Right now, his main goal is to save up and be able to get an apartment for his family.

Guyton says through all of this, his kids have acted as his driving force to keep going and stay motivated. He tells 10/11 all of his kids are happy they’re back in school with their friends and teachers.

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