In light of recent school closures due to COVID-19, below are a few of the education stories we've bookmarked recently, which we hope you will find useful during this challenging time.
Education Week’s Denisa R. Superville talked with principals in Minnesota, Georgia, and Illinois about how their roles have changed and been affected by coronavirus. Kelly Corbett, principal of Otsego Elementary School in MN, explains, “Being that calming and motivating presence is essential. I think that's the most important thing that leaders need to do right now," she said. "We need to be prepared. We don't need to panic. We have the resources in front of us. We have great educators. We just need to plan.”
Over on The 74, Robin Lake, director of the Center on Reinventing Public Education at the University of Washington Bothell, details how Northshore School District rapidly transitioned to digital learning. “Now is the time to innovate,” she explains. During this difficult time when school districts are trying to balance keeping students safe, and keeping them engaged in learning, it’s important to tackle challenges head on.
While many schools in the U.S. have already taken steps to transition to distance learning, The 74 spoke with educators in China to learn about their experience switching to distance learning. “Given the speed at which the coronavirus has moved around the world, getting schools, teachers, students and parents prepared for an extended period of distance learning should be a top priority for education leaders.”
On EdSurge, Beth Rabbitt asks this important question: “In a time requiring literal distance, how will we ensure continued interpersonal and emotional connection across our learning communities?” She outlines different ways educators can foster a sense of emotional connection between students, between students and teachers, and between staff.
Education Dive rounded up a list of valuable lessons learned based on how districts are navigating coronavirus. Their first tip? When implementing e-learning, focus on equity and access. When Random Lake School District in Wisconsin was impacted due to a snowstorm last year, they realized that approximately 10% of families didn’t have access to the internet. To address this, the district partnered with local internet providers.