BACK TO SCHOOL: Free resources to supplement remote learning this year

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- As a growing number of local schools move to virtual-only for the fall, many families are trying to figure out ways to fill the gaps. Learning pods and home schooling are two options, and there are many things to consider, including cost and how to make these potential solutions sustainable.

"My thought is if we could find a smaller group to facilitate some socialization/learning to provide that piece of what was really missing in the spring," said Allison Suflas who lives in Philadelphia's Graduate Hospital neighborhood.

So for her rising 1st grader and six others, Suflas is creating an in-person learning pod with an in-person tutor. But be aware, learning pods can cost hundreds, if not thousands per month.

"Sometimes it can be as much as a private school education, its tuition, let's face it, you're paying a person to educate your child. Now, what's good here is you're often splitting the cost with a few other families. So that takes the cost off," said Tally's personal financial expert Bobbi Rebell.

Rebell said families should try to work with their schools to access additional home resources.

"So maybe bring that to the school board and say, 'Hey, here's a resource, it could help our teachers, it can help our kids, maybe we can get a bulk rate, maybe we can even get it donated for free," she said.

Whether it's for a learning pod, home schooling, or to supplement your school's remote learning, take advantage of affordable, even free resources, like Quarantine Tutors.

"It's a free online tutoring program where we pair individual students with high school or college tutors for free," said Julia Schnipper, president and co-founder of Quarantine Tutors.

Tutors include Jake Rice of Toms River, New Jersey.

"I focus on math with the students that I've done, and the students that I've done so far are usually around the 3rd or 4th grade," he said.

Big Universe and Khan Academy offer free books and learning resources. And while the free library buildings are closed you can access its virtual books and services, too.

Homeschool Legal Defense Association allows you to see your state's legal requirements for creating a home schooling program.

Outschool offers online camps and classes.
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