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#3Heroes: St. Vincent-St. Mary teacher goes the extra mile to keep students digitally connected during coronavirus shutdown

Kelly Gupta, the library/media specialist at the school, is safely making house calls during the COVID-19 outbreak.

AKRON, Ohio — The coronavirus outbreak has shut down schools, leaving kids to navigate home schooling and online learning. But when technology breaks down, the true hero is the person who helps you get back up and running.

For students at St. Vincent-St. Mary High School in Akron, that hero is Kelly Gupta.

Gupta, the library/media specialist at the school, is making house calls.

“That's really the goal. To help them be the best students that they can be, and if they don't have the right equipment, then they don't even have that opportunity,” Gupta tells 3News.

That's why Gupta moved beyond her job description to make tech deliveries.

“I actually had to call our president twice to ask him to do this because he was like 'no, I don't want you to do that and put yourself at risk."

But her persistence and love for students turned that "no" into a "yes."

“And then when I told him that by the end of last week I had 22 kids that I had gone to visit, he was like 'what?' So, it really was like necessity for these kids. Now I’m like the Chromebook on wheels.”

Gupta doesn't make physical contact with students. She leaves needed items outside of their homes.

The mother of four, has only been with St. Vincent-St. Mary high school for close to eight months. 

“But everything that's she's done since she's been an employee here has showed that her top concern is the students,” says Kimberlee Gorr, St. Vincent-St. Mary High School Principal. “Most families aren't equipped to be the facilitator of learning at home. She's trying to ease the burden on those parents.”

Gupta was nominated for #3Heroes by a coworker. To nominate your 3Hero, share details with 3News through Facebook, Twitter or Instagram. Make sure you use the #3Heroes hashtag when posting. You can also text the information to 216-344-3300. That's a text, not a phone call.

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