'Working parents have to have somewhere for our kids to go': Mom plans to turn gaming center into classroom

Posted at 5:05 PM, Aug 10, 2020

VIRGNIA BEACH, Va. – The Game On Gaming Center is a place where people of all ages come to play video games and compete in tournaments.

In less than a month, it will turn into a classroom.

“During the spring, it was hard between being a working mom,” said Milly McKeel, a local mom who has a child in the Norfolk Public Schools system.

Trying to teach her rising fourth grader, Remy, with his coursework was also a challenge.

“He’s in advanced math and coding club. I don’t know any of that,” she adds.

On the first day of school, the center will have former substitute teachers and teacher's assistants who can help students with their school work.

“We are also having college interns come in that are going to help with learning,” said co-owner Deidre Thompson. She has two teens in high school.

“I had to figure out what am I going to do with my own children,” she adds.

The center will be a place for students 10-16 years old, with adults supervising while practicing social distancing.

Thompson says, “I can see what they are doing, right, and if they have Fortnite up, they aren’t doing English.”

Related: List of back-to-school plans for Hampton Roads schools

Every morning before a student comes in, their temperature will be taken with a thermometer. From there, they will be assigned a seat where the stations are separated at least six feet apart for students to learn safely.

Remy is currently enrolled in the summer camp, but his mother says she’s thinking about signing him up for distance learning at the center.

“Why not? It’s reasonable and much cheaper than a daycare center,” McKeel adds.

It’s also a place where she knows her son will be safe while she’s a work.

For more information on the Game On learning center, click here.

Click here for more Back to School coverage.