UCF creates hotline to help parents with virtual learning

If you are navigating virtual school for the first time and need help teaching your children concepts, or if you are a student who needs support, the University of Central Florida has created a free resource.

The Parents as Teachers Hotline can be reached at 407-823-0687.

The hotline will be open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

You can also email parentsteachccie@ucf.edu.

The service connects callers to a professional at UCF’s College of Community Innovation and Education who can help with school questions. 

Questions can be subject-oriented, like math or science, or behavioral. 

“It may be a behavior-related question, like, ‘My child is really just not showing any interest in following up on doing the homework for this class. Can you help me figure out how to make her more interested?’” said Dr. Pamela Sissi Carroll, dean of the college. 

“We have a great combination of faculty members who are professors in the preparation of teachers across all grade levels and subject areas, and we have some faculty members that are also counselor educators and school psychologists,” she said.

When one calls or emails, a staff member will answer and then find an appropriate route for the question. 

Dean Carroll said 35 to 40 faculty members are on hand to help. 

“When you call, you’ll talk to someone who will take down your information and your question and pass your question along to exactly the expert,” she said.

The program was launched at the end of last year when schools in Florida started distance learning because of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

As the Orange County school district starts its school year virtually, Dr. Carroll expects an uptick in calls. 

“As a former classroom teacher myself, I realized how important it was to provide some support for the teachers,” she said. “We have a lot of faculty members who are parents, who are struggling to balance their life as full-time workers and as full-time parents when in March schools closed.”

When emailing, you should receive a reply in 24 hours. 

Messages left on Fridays after 5 p.m. will be answered on Mondays.