MANATEE COUNTY, Fla. — Remote learning just isn't working out for Shayne Citara and his little brother, Gage. 

What You Need To Know

  • State Sen. Lori Berman fileds bill to allow parents to hold their kids back a grade

  • If passed, the bill would only last for a year

  • Parents would have to fill out the required paperwork by June 30

Their father, John, is disabled and can't always help them. On top of that, he says their internet is spotty at best. And he says they're often overlooked, even forgotten, by their teachers. 

“You think all the teachers would be computer whizzes and use computers, but that’s just not true,” John Citara said. 

All of this has led to more than 40 absences this year for the boys, even some failing grades. 

A bill filed by state Sen. Lori Berman, a Palm Beach County Democrat, was just approved by the education committee Wednesday that would allow a parent or guardian to hold their child back. If the bill passes, it would be good for one year and would give the parents the option of holding their children back for the 2021-2022 school year. 

“If a parent choses to hold their child back there will be procedure, a form for them to fill out. They must file it with their superintendent with their school board, and it will automatically be granted,” Berman explained. 

If the bill passes, a parent or guardian would have to fill out the required paperwork by June 30. 

However, that may not work for families like the Citaras.

“If you repeat the same structure that you failed, until you make changes, you’re going to get the same results,” John Citara said.