Shane Skinner

Shane is currently a middle school student who was thrust into remote learning along with many other students in March of 2020.  Shane found the transition to be difficult to navigate and frustrating at best, as he and his three siblings struggled to manage the demands of remote learning with limited, inadequate devices provided by the school in conjunction with the family’s one, much older device.  When in-person learning became an option, the family opted to continue remotely even with these challenges, as the Shane’s younger brother is extremely susceptible to respiratory compromise and high risk for infection.  Needless to say, remote learning remained difficult, and the family struggled to remain positive within such emotionally trying circumstances.

However, through The Arc of Weld County’s Inclusive Technology Access Fund, the Skinner family was provided two Chromebooks, the same devices used by their school for remote learning, and things started to improve.  Now the four Skinner children can use devices concurrently, including additional ones provided by the school district; and they are thriving, Shane in particular.  You see, Shane is very independent young man who did not always appreciate his mother’s efforts to support his learning.  He is motivated to achieve one overarching goal in all that he does, be independent and self-sufficient.  Shane is the kind of guy that prefers to go it alone and the materials provided with the new device supported Shane right where he was at and via the means that most resonates with him.

Along with each device, The Arc of Weld County provides tech coaching through customized printed user guides, along with the installation of that individual’s virtual platform of preference.  These inclusions were the gamechanger for Shane.  His mother reports Shane dove right in, all on his own, as she would have expected, and digested the contents cover to cover.  Now he is remotely learning with an expanded level of independence that may not have otherwise been achieved and there is opportunity to do more.  With grant funds from The Greeley Area Chamber of Commerce, The Arc of Weld County was also able to create 14 short video tutorials for Chromebook and Gmail users.  While Shane has been unable to participate in the other in-person tech coaching opportunities hosted by The Arc of Weld County this year, he is excited to access these new tutorial resources found on our agency website for all to use and learn from. 

Shane and his family are excited for this school year and very optimistic. The experiences will be vastly improved from March 2020.  The Arc of Weld County will continue to support Shane and his family with remote tech coaching opportunities with frequent check-ins to maximize their ongoing use of the devices and expanded engagement with our agency via our virtual community outreach and events.