Ready News: May 14, 2020

Supporting the Whole Child During Restart & Recovery-COVID-19 Response: Webinar Hosted by the Council of Chief State School Officers and the Learning Policy Institute

Tuesday, May 19, 2020
4:00 – 5:00 PM EST

As the 2019-20 school year winds down virtually, state, district, and school leaders are turning their attention to how school buildings can safely reopen. They are exploring how to evaluate and address learning loss, ensure the physical safety and well-being of everyone in the school building, and support the social, emotional, and mental health of students and teachers. They are also considering the best ways to address trauma their students may have experienced because of the COVID-19 pandemic-especially for traditionally underserved students, including students of color and those from low-income families.

Next week, the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) and Learning Policy Institute (LPI) are hosting a webinar to discuss both how lessons from the science of learning and development can inform restart and recovery plans to support student well-being and learning, as well as how state chiefs are already taking a whole child approach to pandemic response.

CCSSO Executive Director Carissa Moffat Miller will facilitate a conversation with Linda Darling-Hammond, President and CEO, LPI and President of the California State Board of Education, as well as state education leaders on the importance of policies and practices that support students’ social, emotional, mental and physical health, and well-being during restart and recovery. The panel will also discuss actions state leaders can pursue in response to the COVID-19 pandemic to support the whole child.

Register now.

At Our Best: Building Youth-Adult Partnerships in Out-of-School Time Settings

The book series Current Issues in Out-of-School Time, by Information Age Publishing, has spread research, promising practices, and policy perspectives from practitioners to further grow the out-of-school time (OST) field. Karen Pittman and other Forum staff have been featured in the series. The fourth book, At Our Best: Building Youth-Adult Partnerships in Out-of-School Time Settings, brings together the voices of over 50 adults and youth to explore both the promises and challenges of intergenerational work in OST programs.

This new volume features empirical research, conceptual essays, poetry, artwork, and engaged dialogue about the complexities of youth-adult partnerships in practice. At Our Best responds to key questions that practitioners, scholars, policymakers, and youth navigate in this work, such as:

  • What role can (or should) adults play in supporting youth voice, learning, and activism?
  • What approaches and strategies in youth-adult partnerships are effective in promoting positive youth development, individual and collective well-being, and setting-level change?
  • What are the tensions and dilemmas that arise in the process of doing this work?
  • And, how do we navigate youth-adult partnerships in the face of societal oppressions such as adultism, racism, and misogyny?

Learn more.

CASEL CARES: SEL Resources During COVID-19

As the country and the world absorb the impact of COVID-19, our interconnectedness has never been more clearly on display. Social and emotional learning (SEL) offers a powerful means to support one another – children and adults – during this challenging time. Now, more than ever, we understand how important it is to demonstrate empathy and resilience, build relationships across distance, and call upon our collective resolve to strengthen our schools and our communities.

CASEL CARES is a new initiative that connects youth-serving leaders with experts to address how SEL can be most helpful in response to today’s circumstances.
Resources and guidance are available, and there is a free, weekly webinar series every Friday on a variety of topics.

Learn more.

COVID-19 Resource Sheet for Opportunity Youth United

Opportunity Youth United and the Forum’s SparkAction built a dynamic, collaborative sheet to share resources among the Opportunity Youth and youth-organizing community. It includes events and opportunities, funding opportunities, general resources and supports, and a space for community asks.

Check it out here.

Lashon Amado, Project Director with Opportunity Youth United, and many other leading voices will be speaking on a Center for Law and Social Policy (CLASP) webinar next Tuesday, 5/19 on the topic of youth, young adults, and allies community response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Learn more and register.

Recovery and Renewal: Principles for Advancing Public Education Post-Crisis

The coronavirus pandemic has upended the school year for 50 million American students and revealed the best and worst of public education: the best in terms of the response by so many educators, support staff, students, and parents; the worst in terms of the intense light shone upon inequities that plague our system.

As policymakers and education leaders plan to re-open buildings for the 2020-21 school year, they face important questions about how to capitalize on strengths and finally deal with weaknesses. There must be an open discussion of the inequities outside of school – like food insecurity, the digital divide, and the uneven experience of stress and trauma – that is replicated and exacerbated by pervasive inequity inside of school.

In a new paper, the Aspen Institute’s Education & Society Program proposes five principles to guide recovery and renewal:

1. Ensuring equity and engagement
2. Using a holistic view to set a coherent strategy
3. Being guided by the science of learning
4. Taking a long-term view of student success
5. Setting an agenda for innovation

Read more.

Framing Adolescent Development During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Even during these uncertain times, it’s a sure thing that adolescents-young people between childhood and adulthood-are still developing biologically, socially, and emotionally. It’s also a sure thing that some of the necessary conditions for healthy adolescent development have been disrupted by COVID-19.

Adolescence is a time when youth need safe and satisfying ways to go to new places, form new relationships, and test out new ideas and experiences-but exploration and stay-at-home measures don’t mix well. It’s a stage when it’s important to maintain academic trajectories- but unequal access to critical resources like computers and the internet means some young people will get off track. It’s a time when skills to manage strong emotions and setbacks are developing-but with so many worries about family health and finances, and so many new responsibilities for sibling care, the situation could outpace young people’s ability to cope in healthy ways.

Frameworks Institute just released a brief guide, suggesting five ways we can help to reframe the conversation about adolescent development in this challenging time.

Learn more.