Information for Parents and Family
Visit Coe's COVID-19 webpage for daily updates and more information.
Keeping Students Engaged
The Student Activities Committee (SAC) is planning virtual events throughout the month of April to keep students engaged and connected to campus.
How to Support Your Student at Home
We realize home dynamics have significantly changed in the last few weeks for families of many Coe students. We want to share some thoughts for the new reality of online, at-home learning and how to support your student.
1. Your student is at home to safely learn online rather than at home for a break.
Your student is still carrying a full course load and class schedule. Because of their coursework, it may be difficult for them to participate in normal family activities or routines. We encourage students to create a work space and schedule that will be productive to learning in their new environment.
2. Check in with your student about resources needed to be successful.
Campus WiFi, hardcopy textbooks and physical notes may not be accessible to your student. Students should reach out to their professors about online access to textbooks and other materials. Many publishers are providing free e-book access at this time. Likewise, some internet providers are providing free internet to college students who may not have access.
3. Remember that your student’s natural schedule may be different at school than at home.
Students have acclimated to their campus schedule, which may involve late-evening meetings or early morning classes. As much as possible, we encourage students to maintain a daily routine that works for them and keeps them focused on their studies and other campus involvements.
4. Talk about health and safety guidelines with your student and what that means for your family.
Students are grieving the sudden loss of access to their classmates, friends and roommates. While it will be tempting to visit local friends and family, nationally current health and safety guidelines include social distancing and self-isolation. Encourage social interaction through the phone or online for the immediate future.
5. Help them identify their stress and encourage healthy coping skills and practices.
We are entering the most stressful time of the term with final projects, papers and course material at its peak difficulty. We are asking students to navigate new online systems they may not have used before, while being displaced from their normal routine, their social interactions and in-person campus resources.
It is natural to experience different and strong emotions during this time. We also want to encourage students to check in with themselves and their families and know when and how to seek support when needed. In these times, mental health can suffer, and we don’t always know it’s happening. For those who already struggle with mental wellness, negative thoughts and feelings can be exacerbated further. If your student is struggling, here are some things they can do to take care of their mental health in the face of uncertainty:
Help them separate what is in their control from what is not.
There are things we can do, and it’s helpful to focus on those. Students may be upset they are not on campus finishing their spring term; those feelings are valid. Help them control what they can while putting things into perspective. Encourage them to set boundaries on consumption of news and social media and to seek information updates at specific times during the day from credible resources to stay informed and get the facts. Try to help them do other activities they enjoy to maintain routine as much as possible.
Do what helps them feel a sense of safety.
This will be different for everyone, and it’s important not to compare to others. It is OK if they’ve decided what makes them feel safe is to limit time spent with others to practice social distancing; however, make sure they are isolating based on potential for sickness versus isolating because it is a symptom of anxiety or depression.
Encourage them to stay connected and reach out if they need more support.
Encourage them to talk to trusted supports about what they are feeling. Connect with others. Maintain healthy relationships. They don’t have to be alone with their worry, and it can be comforting to share what they are experiencing with those trained to help. Recognize when they need help. We have many resources available for your students. We want to help your student be successful: academically, emotionally and socially.
Most of all, enjoy having your kids back under your roof for a while. Stay healthy!
P.S. Remind them to be kind to their professors and staff. Most of us have had a week or less to completely revise classes, assignments, meetings and assessments to an online platform. We are using technology that we have never used or never used in this way. Many of us also have children home from college, school or day care — or elderly parents we are concerned about. We will do our absolute best to provide your students with the quality education they deserve, but we will make some mistakes, and some things we try are going to fall flat. Help them be patient. Kohawks fly together!