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Many Arizona Grandparents Raising Grandkids Worried About Going Back To School

Published: Friday, July 24, 2020 - 7:39am
Updated: Monday, February 22, 2021 - 11:58am

Nearly 60,000 Arizona children are being raised by their grandparents, and many are worried about going back to school in the midst of a pandemic. 

The coronavirus can be devastating for older adults. Sherry Griffin is the kinship support coordinator at Benevilla, a family resource center in the West Valley. She talks to a lot of grandparents and says right now, they fear what could happen:

"They are afraid," said Griffin. "They're concerned that if they get sick, who's going to then have to take care of my grandchild?"

But it’s not just their health they worry about. 

"We have great-grandparents actually who are caring for kids," she said. "I have a couple that's 80 and they have just adopted a two-year-old and they also have two little boys, seven and nine."

They’re also concerned about possibly having to home school.

"They feel inadequate to be the teacher, because it has been so long since they were in school," said Griffin.

But they have limited options: send their grandkids into an environment where they could be exposed to the virus or keep them home and navigate the challenges that come with online learning. 

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