If the pandemic has shown us anything, it’s that small businesses are so resilient. Forced to close their doors due to COVID-19, many digitized their businesses for the first time or enhanced their online presence to attract a new source of revenue. We saw this firsthand with Finli Classes. 

Most recently, responding to a critical need from families and educators, some small businesses have converted their spaces into childcare co-ops, overseeing online learning. As families continue to settle in for the long haul, we predict there will be more families looking for this type of support. 

Our very own founder, Lori Shao, shares her first-person experience as a parent of two young children, who has explored various childcare options before finding one that worked for her family.

Lori, tell us about how you first approached distance learning. 

From the very beginning, distance learning was always a concern. However, due to the safety of our children and their educators, the public school system we belong to decided to close classrooms, which we understood and supported.

However, both my husband and I are entrepreneurs and we work well over 40 hours a week, so we knew we needed support. Our first idea was to find someone to homeschool our children who are in kindergarten and first grade. 

Adjusting to distance learning was not easy. Our kids were visibly stressed and feeling isolated from a lack of social interaction. They were acting out and regressing in school. They are also so young, and had trouble disassociating the home environment as a place to relax when they needed to focus on their classes. 

We quickly realized that having someone come to our house to support our children was not the right fit for us.

We imagine the process was extremely stressful for every member of your family. What did you try next?

I looked to my Finli network and learned that some of our small business clients were transforming their enrichment centers into monitored educational facilities. There’s a number of benefits to this set up. Their owners and instructors know our children and are trained to support them and foster learning. Children are able to get out of the house and enter into a classroom environment with peers. The staff and facility are following procedures and practices set by local jurisdiction, which includes social distancing, wearing masks, and checking temperature daily. 

How has your family responded to this new learning experience? 

This new arrangement has helped my children, who previously were struggling with distance learning. Also, it has saved all of our sanity. I’m able to focus 100% of my energy on Finli and I have peace of mind knowing my children are in good hands.

After trying a couple methods, we found this type of schooling to be the best option for our family as the pandemic lingers and classrooms remain closed. 

For any of our small business owners who are interested in learning what resources are available to them, or who have recently become education facilitators, let our team at Finli know. We appreciate everything you do to help families, and we have tools and support available to help you expand your business.

Learn more about what we’re up to here, or contact us at

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