This spring, school leaders and educators across the world entered what the superintendent of one major district has called “truly uncharted waters.” The spread of the novel coronavirus—and the subsequent shutdown of many school systems—has created a new reality in K–12 education, one in which many educators and families have had to make a rapid, unplanned-for transition to remote (or distance) learning and in which issues of student equity and well-being loom larger than ever.
This special issue of Educational Leadership was designed to provide guidance and spark reflection, discussion, and problem-solving on these issues. Bringing together a range of expert educator voices, the issue spotlights technological, infrastructural, and instructional best practices for remote learning in difficult circumstances. At the same time, it explores the social-emotional, cognitive, and resource challenges that many students and families are facing today, in effect providing a whole-child lens on distance-learning practices.
Of course, as our contributors make clear, there are no easy answers in a time like this. But we hope this special issue serves as a basis for impactful collaboration and decision-making as schools move forward.
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