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District Administation Magazine
Superintendents across the nation are responding to the death of George Floyd and the ongoing protests by charting news courses for their districts in combatting racism. In Virginia, Prince William County County Public Schools Superintendent Steve Walts said Floyd's death and other recent events prove "that the voices of many in our community are not being heard."
Classrooms. Hallways. Buses. Schedules. Extracurriculars. Every facet of the school day will have to be fundamentally altered when students eventually return to school. To prevent the spread of the coronavirus, school leaders must ensure social distancing — limiting group sizes, keeping students six feet apart, restricting non-essential visitors and closing communal spaces. Those measures run counter to how schools usually operate, with teachers and students working together in close quarters, children socializing throughout the day and the buildings serving as a community gathering space.
According to a recent cost analysis by AASA, The School Superintendents Association, reopening schools could take an average district nearly $1.8 million in unbudgeted expenses. The report suggests, in some cases, school districts can expect to spend an additional $490 per student to cover costs associated with purchasing required cleaning supplies and protective equipment.
By Bambi Majumdar (commentary)
School's out for the summer in most places and districts are now focusing on how to prepare for classes in the fall. While the number of new nationwide COVID-19 cases is abating, and a large percentage of the afflicted have recovered, new cases are still happening daily. Psychologists agree that no amount of distance learning can replicate the benefits of in-person learning. However, most experts agree that we need more research and information about the virus to guide decision-making for reopening U.S. schools.
Like many parents, Karina Cooksey was looking forward to sending her 8-year-old son Simon back to school this fall. Now she's wondering if he'll have to attend third grade at home in Plain City, Utah, after all. Because Simon has a genetic disease that destroys his immune system, she's less worried about him getting COVID-19. She's more terrified he'll be exposed to measles.
As school district leaders struggle to solve the complex equation of reopening buildings in the fall or maintaining virtual learning, several factors are weighing heavily on their minds. How do you make educators feel comfortable in their work environments when more than half of them prefer school buildings stay shut to slow the spread of COVID-19? What about educators and students with underlying health conditions? And what if remote learning must continue in the fall even though the approach led to declining student engagement this spring?
In 15 years of working in education, Sara Hunter says technology has always played a role in her career. But when she began teaching her third and fourth grade students at Zionsville Community Schools in Indiana how to blog, she said it was a revelation.
At any college, students have the opportunity to take classes two ways: online or in-person. Hybrid classes, a combination of the two formats, are also available and very well liked among students. This pandemic has created three types of classes, two of which are new to students. First, what was once intended to be an in-person experience is now a remote class. And those hybrid classes that were originally meant to include some face time with the professor and other students are now remote hybrids. Online classes seem to remain unchanged.
Michigan State University via Science Daily
Now more than ever, people who want to learn a new language turn to their mobile devices for help as language learning applications have become increasingly available. While these apps allow users to study a new language from anywhere at any time, how effective are they? That is a question Shawn Loewen, professor in the Department of Linguistics and Germanic, Slavic, Asian and African Languages at Michigan State University, is trying to answer.
In the minutes before your next class is set to begin, take a quick look over your students as they come in and get settled. How many do you see with laptops, tablets and phones? A quarter of the students? Half? More? No matter the age, circumstances or geography, this much is true: it's more than it was five years ago, and significantly more than the five years before that.
U.S. News & World Report
Sen. Lamar Alexander, a Tennessee Republican and the chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee requested cost estimates from states for how much additional federal assistance they need to reopen schools this fall. "It would be helpful to me and I think other senators if you could provide some specifics to the committee about exactly what it would take in terms of financial support to open the schools safely," Alexander said.
By Patrick Gleeson (commentary)
Once we're past the horrifying COVID-19 pandemic, states are going to be desperately looking for ways to cut expenses, if they aren't already. Teachers and teachers' unions can expect their salaries, benefits and working conditions to take a hit. But how big a hit? And how should teachers and their unions respond?
What does learning in a post-COVID world look like? Will schools convene in person again, will they have to move back to online learning in case of new viral outbreaks, or will learning remain online for now? Pandemic Planning for Distance Learning: Scenarios and Considerations for Pre-K–12 Education Leaders, a report from New America, asks just those questions. The report makes clear that schools will need to have some kind of distance learning plans in place for the fall — and they'll need to ensure students have reliable internet access.
Teachers from across the country reflect on their experiences teaching during the COVID-19 outbreak. In this post, seven teachers describe the emotional experience of recent months and share some of the successes and challenges of emergency distance learning. Quotes have been edited for length and clarity.
Recent events have shaken me to my core, and the nationwide protests over the killing of George Floyd suggest that people across the country are similarly shaken. These are dark times, but if there's anything that seems like a glimmer of light to me at the moment, it's the fact that so many teachers are reflecting on how to fight racism.
When students return to school, their day-to-day experiences will be dictated by social-distancing rules and recommendations from public health authorities. Long-established routines of how they learn and socialize will have to change. Education Week spoke to more than a dozen experts, including public health officials, education leaders and superintendents, to discuss how students' daily lives may look in this new reality.
Tech & Learning
As the school year comes to a close and the pandemic has forced families to rethink summer traditions such as camps, family reunions and beach outings, Wide Open School is now offering new free content and resources, in English and Spanish, to provide online and offline activities to keep kids active, entertained, emotionally strong and learning.
Before a global health crisis closed schools nationwide, Kristen Roosevelt told her principal that she wasn't interested in teaching summer school this year. Roosevelt, who teaches first grade at a high-poverty public school in Portland, Oregon, changed her mind after her school closed and she saw how the crisis was affecting her students. It took three weeks to get devices to students who needed them. The next hurdle was connecting families to the internet.
Teachers across California are worried that students who are learning English will fall behind in their language skills due to the school closures and are trying various approaches to connect with those students and their families. Even as concerns have been raised about the quality of instruction for native English speakers, those who are still new to the language face an even greater hurdle.
As police shootings take the national spotlight, sparking reflection and discussion about racial equity, one researcher has released a study showing how the effects of those shootings seep into nearby schools and affect students' learning. The report shows that police shootings, particularly when victims are unarmed, lower black and Latino students' grades and the chances they'll graduate from high school.
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06/08/20 — Region Superintendent, Clark County School District, Clark County, NV
06/05/20 — Assistant Principal, Pendergast School District, Phoenix, AZ
06/05/20 — Elementary School Assistant Principal, Mount Vernon Schools, Mount Vernon, WA
06/04/20 — Director of Purchasing and Warehouse, Pendergast School District, Phoenix, AZ
06/04/20 — Executive Director — PK-12 School Leadership, Fort Worth Independent School District, Fort Worth, TX
06/04/20 — Purchasing Technician, Pendergast School District, Phoenix, AZ
06/04/20 — Technology Integration Specialist, Pendergast School District, Phoenix, AZ
06/01/20 — Director of Language Acquisition, Berwyn South School District 100, Berwyn, IL
06/01/20 — Director of Special Education, Berwyn South School District 100, Berwyn, IL
05/29/20 — Teacher on Assignment — Administrator (Centennial High School), Peoria Unified School District #11, Glendale, AZ
05/29/20 — Teacher on Assignment — Administrator (Liberty High School), Peoria Unified School District #11, Glendale, AZ
05/27/20 — Assistant Superintendent, Information Technology, Fairfax County Public Schools, Fairfax, VA
05/27/20 — Assistant Superintendent, Special Services, Fairfax County Public Schools, Fairfax, VA
05/27/20 — Chief of Staff, Hartford Public Schools, Hartford, CT
05/26/20 — Associate Chief, Student Equity and Opportunity, Denver Public Schools, Denver, CO
05/26/20 — Elementary – ESL Teacher, Kansas City Kansas Public Schools, Kansas City, KS
05/26/20 — High School Math Teacher, Kansas City Kansas Public Schools, Kansas City, KS
05/26/20 — Instructional Coach – Arrowhead Middle School, Kansas City Kansas Public Schools, Kansas City, KS
05/26/20 — Instructional Coach – Harmon High School, Kansas City Kansas Public Schools, Kansas City, KS
05/26/20 — Middle School Math Teacher, Kansas City Kansas Public Schools, Kansas City, KS
05/26/20 — Special Education Coordinator, Kansas City Kansas Public Schools, Kansas City, KS
05/26/20 — Special Education Teacher, Kansas City Kansas Public Schools, Kansas City, KS
05/22/20 — Director of Budget and Finance, Pendergast School District, Phoenix, AZ
05/22/20 — Director of Personnel and Human Resources, Mount Vernon School District, Mount Vernon, NY
05/22/20 — Purchasing Coordinator, Pendergast School District, Phoenix, AZ
05/20/20 — Chief of Staff, Syphax Education Center, Arlington, VA
05/20/20 — Panel Manager, Office of Family Assistance, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Administration for Children and Families
05/19/20 — Executive Director, American School Counselor Association, Alexandria, VA
05/19/20 — Superintendent, Austin Independent School District, Austin, TX
05/16/20 — Superintendent, St. John the Baptist Parish Public Schools, Reserve, LA
05/15/20 — Executive Director — PK-12 School Leadership, Fort Worth Independent School District, Fort Worth, TX
05/15/20 — Superintendent, Martin County School District, Martin County, FL
05/15/20 — Superintendent, Piner-Olivet Union School District, Santa Rosa, CA
05/13/20 — .5 Spanish Bilingual Title I Literacy Interventionist, Urbana School District #116, Urbana, IL
05/12/20 — School Designer, West, EL Education, CA
05/11/20 — Chief Performance Officer, Hartford Public Schools, Hartford, CT
05/11/20 — Principal, Alfred E. Burr Middle School (Grades 6-8), Hartford Public Schools, Hartford, CT
05/11/20 — Principal, Global Communications Academy (Grades Kindergarten-8), Hartford Public Schools, Hartford, CT
05/11/20 — Principal, Thomas J. McDonough Middle School (Grades 6-8), Hartford Public Schools, Hartford, CT
05/11/20 — Regional Assistant Instructional Superintendent, Denver Public Schools, Denver, CO
05/08/20 — Assistant Director of Early Childhood and Exceptional Student Programs, Pendergast School District, Phoenix, AZ
05/07/20 — Executive Director, Assessment, Reporting and Data, Denver Public Schools, Denver, CO
05/07/20 — Liaison, Board of Education, Denver Public Schools, Denver, CO
05/07/20 — School Monitor, Hempstead Union Free School District, Hempstead, NY
05/07/20 — Senior Manager, Academic Programs & Planning, Denver Public Schools, Denver, CO
05/06/20 — Coach/Mentor, Puerto Rico Education Foundation, Puerto Rico
05/06/20 — Director of Curriculum and Innovation, Pendergast School District, Phoenix, AZ
05/06/20 — Elementary School Assistant Principal, Spring Independent School District, Houston, TX
05/06/20 — Elementary School Principal, Spring Independent School District, Houston, TX
05/06/20 — High School Assistant Principal, Spring Independent School District, Houston, TX
05/06/20 — High School Associate Principal, Spring Independent School District, Houston, TX
05/06/20 — High School Principal, Spring Independent School District, Houston, TX
05/06/20 — Middle School Assistant Principal, Spring Independent School District, Houston, TX
05/06/20 — Middle School Principal, Spring Independent School District, Houston, TX
05/06/20 — Superintendent, Proviso Township High School District 209, Forest Park, IL
05/06/20 — Teacher, Pendergast School District, Phoenix, AZ
05/05/20 — Executive Director, Curriculum and Instruction, Denver Public Schools, Denver, CO
05/05/20 — Regional Instructional Superintendent, Denver Public Schools, Denver, CO
05/05/20 — Senior Manager, Culture and Engagement, Denver Public Schools, Denver, CO
05/05/20 — Senior Manager, Strategic Human Resources Support, Denver Public Schools, Denver, CO
05/05/20 — Senior Program Initiatives Manager, AR&D, Denver Public Schools, Denver, CO
05/04/20 — Principal, Durham Public Schools, Durham, NC
05/04/20 — Superintendent, Madison Metropolitan School District, Madison, WI
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