Elaine Tholen: A huge part of my job usually is visiting schools and meeting with school administrators and of course attending public school board meetings. I started a #dayinthelifeprogram where I was shadowing students at our high schools. I was planning to go on the middle schools and then the elementary schools. Now, like everyone else, I am working from home and doing everything remotely. We just had our first public, remote school board meeting last Friday. We used Blackboard Collaborate and the screen was live streamed. Today, I am listening to two Blackboard Collaborate sessions with McLean HS students to understand what their issues are regarding our FCPS Distance Learning program. I spend more time answering emails from parents and students that have concerns. I will be holding a remote office hour tomorrow and will plan to do more of that. It's going to be different, but I am going to try and be as creative as possible to keep in touch with Dranesville schools – students, parents, administrators, etc.
Richard Ashton: When the news first broke about the pandemic, my sales plummeted. But when they announced the school closings, my business blew up. I went from being concerned I was going to have to close, to the highest volume I have ever had for one week. Many of my customers commented that they wanted to support all the local small businesses and wanted to make sure I survived. Their support and their words meant a lot to me. There’s still huge uncertainty, but I’m going to try to continue operating as long as permitted and/or safe.