The COVID-19 pandemic has created extreme disruption and extraordinary circumstances for educators, students, and families. Still, we have seen amazing examples of strength, dedication, and passion in the K–12 space—teachers and students bringing the classroom online and navigating new, and often imperfect, systems to connect with one another, and communities working tirelessly to ensure children are safe, fed, and emotionally supported.
While educators frequently grapple with the “summer slide” during the back-to-school season, the impact of this pandemic has led to an urgent imperative that needs our attention now. Of critical importance, the disruptions from this past year will have a greater negative impact on students from high-need communities and those with special needs.
A year ago, I shared my thoughts about the impact of COVID-19 on the future of K–12 education, and I invite you to read more here on Shaped. I noted that we are on the cusp of a new era—the era of connected teaching and learning. Well-established research tells us that teachers have the greatest impact on student outcomes.
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