Advice From College Presidents On Building Trust to Weather a Crisis

College leaders may be feeling some relief as the spring semester draws to a close. The arrival of May means that many of them officially survived the first wave of important decisions required to respond to COVID-19. As I wrote a few weeks ago, those leaders who put people first as they made these decisions and communicated with vulnerability, kindness and empathy were most likely to get the best results. As we enter summer, though, college presidents, Read More

Scheduling the COVID-19 School Year

Five days a week, 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. That traditional school day—so coveted now for its normalcy and essential contribution to how our families, communities, and economy function—probably won’t make a full comeback this fall. Some school communities will forge ahead with a return to the typical school calendar, but that carries large risks. If there’s an outbreak of the coronavirus, they’ll have to shut down abruptly. But in many school districts, the sheer Read More

Whistleblower: Education Department Killed Website That Made Applying for Loan Forgiveness Too Easy

THE TRUMP administration rejected a website that the Education Department’s Federal Student Aid office designed to help students who have been defrauded by their colleges apply for loan forgiveness, arguing the tool made the process too easy, according to a whistleblower complaint. The development of the website was part of a $90 million federal contract to build one main hub for all federal student aid needs that modernized existing loan servicing portals and made them more Read More

Going Back to a Better School: NEA Issues Guidance on Reopening

Many schools across the country will in all likelihood reopen in the fall for the 2020-21 school year. States are currently reviewing potential models that maximize both learning – whether in-person or continued remote instruction – and health and safety. Still, because of continued uncertainty surrounding the coronavirus pandemic, “back to school” for many districts and college campuses remains more of an “if” than a “when.” As some states are currently discovering, reopening plans that ignore or Read More

3 coronavirus challenges for curriculum directors this fall

Robert Dillon knows any plan to bring back 2,700 students this fall can’t be boilerplate. That’s why the director of innovative learning for The School District of University City in Missouri instead envisions a scenario that dips, dives, moves forward and back — all throughout the year. To him, the best solution is one that’s flexible, so if students have to learn from home again for a period of time, their learning needs are still met. “We’re trying Read More

Secretary DeVos Approves 10 Additional Perkins Career and Technical Education Plans

U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos announced today the Department of Education has approved 10 additional career and technical education (CTE) plans. Arizona, Idaho, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Texas and Wisconsin are the latest states, along with the District of Columbia, to have their CTE plans approved under the new, bipartisan Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act (Perkins V), which was signed into law by President Donald J. Trump on Read More

Performing In A Pandemic: Taking The High School Play Online

Among the many losses this school year was the chance for students to shine on stage in the classic end-of-the-year theater production. Yet teachers and students across the country turned misfortune into opportunity, creating memorable plays and performances that will live on — online. For many student performers, there was that one week, back in March, where everything shifted. One moment everyone was at school, going to class and hanging out with friends … and Read More

Senate Asks for Estimate on Costs to Reopen Schools Safely

SEN. LAMAR ALEXANDER, A Tennessee Republican and the chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee on Wednesday 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. Read More

Reflections On A Lost Senior Year With Hope For The Future

Emma Cockrum was in her second week of quarantine when her father discovered an old bike behind their house. And that bicycle turned out to be a gift: With school closed at East Ascension High School in Gonzales, La., bike riding for Emma became a way of coping with the loss of the rest of her senior year. “I would say the first two to three weeks we were out of school, I was not Read More

Report: Most districts lacked clear plans in shift to remote learning

It’s almost a given that districts will continue some level of distance learning this fall — either to maintain social distancing, respond to future coronavirus outbreaks, give families more choice or a combination of all of those reasons. District leaders can now begin planning “to align the resources, create teacher professional development and assess community priorities to design plans for the fall that have high expectations for each student’s learning and are responsive to each Read More