A report commissioned by the Minneapolis Foundation offers research-based insights for educators, suggested actions for policy makers, and practical tips for parents designed to ensure that online learning during COVID-related school closures is effective and equitable. The report, Implementing Principles of Reimagine Minnesota in a Period of Remote Teaching and Learning: Education Equity in the Age of COVID-19 (21 pages, PDF), notes that COVID-19 has highlighted social disparities in health care, education, job security, housing, and other areas, creating opportunities for youth to develop a "critical consciousness" — defined as "learning to perceive social, political, and economic contradictions and to take action against the oppressive elements of reality" — and suggests resources for teaching self-reflection and humanizing "the other." To ensure that digital inequities do not exacerbate societal disparities, the report's authors write, district leaders need to apply a multi-tiered system of supports, including assessment, data-based decision making, multi-level instruction that includes social-emotional resources, and infrastructure. Emphasizing the importance of supporting "the whole student" by balancing academic, social, and emotional learning, the report suggests frameworks, resources, and activities focused on developmental relationships, supplemental learning, mentoring, and trauma-informed approaches to teaching during the public health emergency.
(Photo credit: Rick Smith/Charles Stewart Mott Foundation)