The need to rapidly shift courses to remote instruction and meet research and service obligations while also ‘working’ from home has further intensified the already demanding conditions of academic work. Women have been hit hardest. The pandemic has exacerbated existing gender and other inequities among faculty.
In a webinar marking the 25th anniversary of the UN Fourth World Conference on Women, former Secretaries of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and Madeleine Albright reflected on their work in Beijing and its continuing impact. Ambassador Melanne Verveer led the discussion, titled “Beijing +25: Commemorating a Watershed Moment for Women’s Rights” and hosted by the Georgetown Institute for Women, Peace and Security.
While many industries have halted hiring in the face of the global pandemic, one is actively seeking workers: elementary school education.
“Learning pods” are popping up across the country: Students from multiple families gather in one home to receive otherwise inaccessible in-person instruction.
Fueled by zero tolerance policies, school districts across the country frequently push kids out of school and toward the juvenile and criminal justice systems. The presence of police officers in schools makes a bad situation worse, too often punishing students who are Black, Latinx, LGBTQ and/or have disabilities.
Our children need more nurses and counselors, more social workers and school psychologists—not more police.
As the new school year begins in the midst of the pandemic, students and teachers are adjusting to a multitude of changes, with districts nationwide shifting to distance learning systems. But in addition to coping with remote instruction, many teachers are trying to address the summer of protests for racial justice in their classrooms. And some of them are being persecuted for it.
The coronavirus is offering a chance to ‘reimagine’ education, but if the new landscape doesn’t include efforts to recruit and retain more Black teachers, reform will be a farce.
If the purpose of education reform is to boost students’ academic outcomes, reduce suspensions, raise expectations, and even recruit (less racist) teachers into the profession, research suggests that increasing the number of Black teachers should be part of any serious strategy.
COVID-19 is compromising significant recent progress made towards global girls’ education equity, as schools close and migration increases. The painful and protracted interruptions to girls’ education are a global emergency, with incalculable potential losses to follow.
Some schools already have banned students from wearing pajamas during remote learning. And dress-coding targets girls and women of color more than others.
Rather than disrupt dress-coding, the pandemic exposes who gets to be comfortable and what “comfort” means.
Grace, the Michigan teen whose story went viral a several weeks ago after she was incarcerated for failing to complete homework assignments, has been freed. The Michigan Court of Appeals ordered her release from Children’s Village, where she’d been detained since May, on Friday.
“We can’t forget Grace is just one case in our broken criminal justice system. Let this case shine a light and raise awareness of the work we still need to do.”
“While I understand school districts are struggling through a crisis they didn’t create, we still desperately need them to step up with creative, out-of-the-box solutions that work for all kids and families in this unprecedented time.”
Here are three.