In mid-March, as COVID-19 began spreading in earnest in the United States and the economy ground to a screeching halt, one of the biggest casualties was a sense of normalcy for America’s youth. As businesses closed their offices and sent their employees home to work remotely, schools ceased normal operations months ahead of the summer holidays. At first, schools intended to resume after just a few weeks—then, it was a few more weeks—and finally, the in-person school year simply ended.
Educational institutions around the country scrambled to salvage their semesters by pivoting to distance learning, virtual homework, and online testing. While school districts and colleges varied their models, almost all educators shared the assumption that by the fall, things would be back to normal and in-person schooling would resume.
Despite the continued presence of the virus, some schools reopened—and many have been linked to upticks in COVID-19 spread. In Michigan, as of August 19, there have been 14 COVID-19 outbreaks at colleges and K-12 schools. In Mississippi, an elementary school reopened, experienced a COVID-19 outbreak, and closed its doors again within the space of a week. Similar anecdotes in nearly every state are calling into question the wisdom of resuming in-person learning so soon. They are also prompting an overdue conversation about what the future of education could be, with or without a pandemic disrupting its procedures.
In this white paper, we will examine the new educational normal that COVID-19 is creating and what it could mean for the future of schooling, from virtual-dependent schools to video chat tutors to parent-family pods. We’ll also explain what these changes mean for due diligence vetting to ensure a safe and responsible future of education.
Follow the link to read or download the full white paper.