Going back to school for the 2020-2021 school year will look very different for students, parents, teachers, and administrators. Education nonprofit Newark Trust for Education Executive Director Ronald Chaluisan participated in ABC New York’s “Back to School Town Hall,” an hour-long show on how to help children succeed in this new learning environment.
One of the central points Chaluisan made is that learning is a social activity and, whether going back to school or learning remotely, we should always be thinking of how to safely increase socialization for students so they can succeed emotionally and academically. He also commented that communication between parents and children is important, and having an open dialogue before going back into the classroom can be helpful. This means asking kids questions along the lines of what excites them about the new school year, their plans, and their concerns. He suggests having parents and children role-play situations, like the child seeing his or her friends at school again.
Another education-related issue Chaluisan brought up is anxiety. We need to acknowledge that the world has changed, and so have children’s relationships. Having activities like a peer-to-peer forum would allow these kids to either rebuild or build up new relationships with others. Parent-to-parent forums to discuss how they feel and what is working for them are also very helpful in easing parents’ anxieties.
He looks at this situation as an opportunity to better our education system and bring about more equity – in instruction, technology, socio-emotional learning, communication, and resources. He believes inequity in schools can turn into a front-burner issue that brings parents’, students’, and teachers’ voices together. Watch the Town Hall segment here: https://abc7ny.com/education/abc7nys-back-to-school-town-hall-your-questions-answered/6386869/.