Breaking News
More () »

KGW Digital Q&A | The Do's of Distance Learning

KGW's Galen Ettlin spoke with two education experts, PDX Reading Specialist CEO Barbara Steinberg, and Jesuit High Learning Support Director Colleen O'Mahony.
Credit: Ellen Boynton

PORTLAND, Ore. — School has shifted online due to the COVID-19 pandemic and distance learning has been a challenge for both students and their parents.

Parents are stressed out. They’ve unexpectedly had to become a teacher of sorts to their children. For some parents who have a job, working from home isn’t an option and balancing employment as well as a child at home can be difficult.

For the students, learning all the new software programs and juggling the demands of school without the structure of in-person education is a demanding new way of life.

During this week's digital Q&A, KGW's Galen Ettlin spoke with two education experts: PDX Reading Specialist CEO Barbara Steinberg and Jesuit High School Learning Support Director Colleen O'Mahony.

WATCH: The Do's of Distance Learning | KGW Digital Q&A

The following are among the questions that the two experts answered during this week's digital Q&A:

  • How do you maintain a regular schedule?
  • What to you do if you have multi-aged kids in the house?
  • What are some good tools to help keep kids organized?
  • What can you do if you feel overwhelmed as a parent?
  • What can you do with your seniors right now?
  • How much screen time should you allow your child to have?
  • What's the best way to communicate with teachers?
  • How can older siblings help their younger siblings?
  • How can parents help students who struggle with executive function, reading comprehension and/or other learning disabilities?

The experts also answered viewer questions submitted via KGW's social media channels.

Expert bios


CEO, PDX Reading Specialist

Barbara's experiences as a teacher for 12 years led her to graduate school to study language-based reading disabilities. She created PDX Reading Specialist, LLC in 2009, and Barbara and her team have helped hundreds of students overcome the challenges of dyslexia through remediation. Barbara is proud to support students and their families through assessment, remediation, and advocacy.


Director, Jesuit High School Learning Support

As the director of Jesuit High School Learning Support, O'Mahony is involved in the department's three interrelated areas of support: academic; personal/social; and college admissions preparation and support. She and her team work extensively with parents, teachers, administrators and other support staff. Their primary role is to develop a trusting relationship with students to provide support, guidance and assistance, and ultimately, to advocate on the student’s behalf.


KGW has resources available to help those looking for information about and help with distance learning:

  • Parents, teachers and students at Woodlawn Elementary in Portland share their challenges and successes of distance learning. Learn more
  • KGW has a comprehensive list of resources to help people who are struggling to get through the COVID-19 pandemic.

The following resources were provided by our two experts:

RELATED: Helpful resources for Oregonians impacted by coronavirus

RELATED: The challenges and successes of distance learning | Inside Woodlawn Ep. 8

RELATED: KGW Digital Q&A: How to succeed in a tough job market

RELATED: KGW Digital Q&A | Who's hiring?

RELATED: KGW Digital Q&A: Navigating unemployment

WATCH: KGW Q&A | YouTube playlist

Before You Leave, Check This Out