Tech Wellness Check Team 

Berkeley Schools Volunteers made “Tech Wellness Check” phone calls this spring to families that received a loaner Chromebook from BUSD. This major undertaking is a critical piece of BUSD’s strategy to minimize the deepening of the digital divide due to the forces of COVID-19.

Goals: This spring, tech wellness volunteers:

  • ensured that every family called had a working Chromebook and internet
  • assisted all families in accessing 1) students’ weekly assignments on Google Classroom and 2) “live” instruction/office hours on Zoom/Google Meet 
  • supported all families in accessing online e-books and audio books through BUSD and the City of Berkeley collections

Supports: Tech Wellness volunteers were provided with training and a detailed (and constantly updated) script, with links and resources. Volunteers were also provided with a reference guide for non-tech related needs (food, utilities, health, and housing, etc.). 

Scope: Tech wellness check phone calls were made from home, at times that worked for the volunteer and the family. BSV assigned volunteers a roster of families based on the hours per week the volunteer had to give. This project was active through June 12, 2020. Based on learnings from end-of-project surveys and debriefs, some form of Tech Wellness support for families will continue during the 2020-21 school year.

Skills Required: In addition to familiarity with technology and online learning resources (which could be gained through training and links), this project asked volunteers to exercise emotional intelligence, patience, and resourcefulness. 

Interested in Joining Tech Support for Families for 2020-21? First, join Berkeley Schools Volunteers, using this link. In the skills section, please check the box for “Tech Support for Remote Learning/ Tech Wellness Checks.” You will be contacted in late summer as this project reconfigures under new structures and leadership.

Questions? Daniel Johnston: