With schools across the country moving to online learning, many families are quickly having to find ways to cope with having children at home whole parents work.

When it became clear that many Northern Texas schools would not be opening for in-person learning, Buzzballz/Southern Champion, LLC., a woman-owned and family-operated Texas Winery and Distillery, realized they needed a solution for their staff.

“Many of our employees have dual-income households, and during COVID, their children need supervision while the parents go to work,” said Merrilee Kick, founder and CEO. “So, we hired a certified TEA elementary teacher, Christine Drumm, to work in our classroom with them while they do their online learning with their respective schools.”

Using a conference room and the aid of a Texas Education Agency-certified teacher, Christine Drumm, and teacher’s aide, Sergio Diazdeleon, The Nest was born. The program is starting with five students, ranging from grades 1-6, with a schedule coinciding with the production team’s first shift from 6 a.m. to 3 p.m. Despite having its challenges, the classroom is outfitted with plenty of supplies and offers students a free lunch and ample attention and care.

“We are a family-owned business and, as a former teacher, we take education seriously,” Kick said. “Kids shouldn’t be shortchanged on their education during this pandemic.” The classroom has temperature checks and safety protocols in place to ensure everyone remains happy, healthy, and ready to learn.