Almost a full year into the COVID-19 pandemic, we once again find ourselves at a critical juncture. As we head into the spring, schedules are still uncertain. But there is growing confidence schools will reopen in the fall.
With this is anticipation of reopening, there is broad commitment to build back better. There is increased recognition of the role that community partners and families can play and that the impact of the last year on teens and young adults will have lasting ramifications. COVID and the racial reckonings have exposed inefficiencies and inequities. This means we are now face to face with a tangible opportunity to challenge and support school districts and community partners in creating equitable learning and development ecosystems that unleash the potential of all learners, recognize the power of all committed adults, and optimize all learning settings and approaches.
If we are truly intent on not going back to normal, we must recognize the interdependence of systems and center on young people and their families. To do so, school and community leaders must work collaboratively to reflect and take stock to:
I retired as CEO of the organization I started and love to refire my engines as a thought leader of the field I helped create. I am pleased to have recently become a proud investor and partner in KP Catalysts, helping friend and colleague Katherine Plog Martinez strengthen and expand her nimble, field-capacity building business.