It’s August. That means we’re kicking off a new theme. All month we’re focusing on our XQ Learner Goals to build the academic core needed for college, career, and life. Put another way, we think all students should graduate as “masters of all fundamental literacies.” As the country collectively wrestles with a “back to school season” like no other, we hope these resources will help you to stay focused on what matters most for students.
Check out this issue’s Give Me Five resources for re-opening advice and more.
1. REIMAGINE: School Reopening Plans Offer a Chance to Rethink High Schools
The COVID-19 pandemic served as a pressure test on our education system, making it clear that the system, as it exists now, cannot hold.
Why it matters: The pandemic exacerbated inequalities in our education system. YOU can confront these inequalities and make a difference for your students. By creating a more equal education system for every student, students can better demonstrate mastery of and progress through academic coursework.
Here are some ways to make schools more equitable:
- Focus on every student’s holistic needs
- Confront institutional inequalities head-on
- Ensure access to distance learning necessities
2. APPLY: 8 Tips From School Leaders to School Leaders on Remote Learning
School leaders share their strategies for building and sustaining school networks remotely that are supportive and inclusive.
Why it matters: Staying connected with students while navigating a crisis is a challenge that no one was prepared for; however, maintaining that connection is essential to maximize learning and success. This is why we spoke directly with school leaders for advice!
They challenge educators to:
- Personalize feedback to staff members
- Create space to plan, process, and have fun
- Support staff members through virtual flexibility
- Continue with daily huddles and professional learning communities
- Encourage student engagement
- Create connections through structured planning
- View the current circumstance as a design challenge for new learning practices
- Establish structures to support all learners, focusing on the most vulnerable
3. SHARE: High School Resources for Remote Learning During COVID-19 Schools Closures
We compiled a huge collection of resources for educators, families, and students facing the challenge of remote learning
Why it matters: We’re sharing what we’ve learned from educators, families, and communities to help guide you towards and through an uncertain school year.
Our resources include:
- Resources for reopening
- Community partnerships
- COVID-19 and beyond
- Education policy
- Equity in education
- Health and wellness
- Meaningful, engaged learning
- School mission and culture
- Smart use of time, space, and tech
- Youth voice and choice
4. ENGAGE: iCivics and the Importance of Civics Education in This National Moment
There’s never been a better time to engage students as young citizens.
Why it matters: The 2020 election is an important one. iCivics helps students, educators, and families learn how to participate in our democracy.
These interactive resources are fun and educational!
- iCivics’ Remote Learning Toolkit
- iCivics’ 2020 presidential election headquarters
5. RECRUIT: The Anti-Racist Guide to New School Hires
To create a more equitable and just education system, we need to hire teachers and staff who understand and embrace social change.
Why it matters: Teachers play a crucial role in creating a learning environment that offers refuge from the racist ideologies and violence that plagues the country.
Here’s what to look for in a candidate:
- Compassionate and supportive of students
- Accountable for what their student do and do not learn
- Knowledgeable about Black history and Black pedagogy
- Reflective of the students they serve
- Aware of the difference between schooling and education
- Courageous problem-solvers
Become A Guest Blogger
We’re looking for educators and students to guest blog about their experiences. Upcoming topics include: implementing anti-racist education practices, decolonizing the curriculum, addressing systemic racism through education policy changes, and rethinking high school in service of equity. If you’re interested in writing for us or being interviewed about your story or your work, learn more here.