The recent COVID19 pandemic and subsequent school shutdowns have many parents, teachers and education enthusiasts (like myself) wondering, “Where do we go from here?” In an education system where: An estimated 1 billion students are at risk of falling behind due to school closures and teachers are not wanting to return to work, is there a light at the end of the tunnel? Here’s how I think education can emerge stronger than it was before COVID-19.

Parent Engagement

One benefit, of the COVID-19 school shutdowns, is the increase in parent engagement and participation in their child’s education. When the schools shut down, parents were no longer able to be the third wheel in their kids’ education; they were thrust into the driver’s seat. Having to now ask the questions “What are my kids learning?”, “How do my students learn best?” and “Are their needs being met by their current school?”

These questions have long been unconsidered by parents pre-COVID. Many parents had gotten into the routine of leaving their child’s education COMPLETELY up to the school, school administration and even the county/city school district. Parents’ voices and participation in their students’ education will be one thing that will make education stronger than ever before, and will continue to be a theme in k-12 education from here on out 

School Choice

More educational options will make education stronger than ever before. The COVID shutdowns have parents realizing there are more options, than brick & mortar schools, out there. More parents have tried traditional homeschooling, co-ops, online school and many other options as a result of school shutdowns. The freedom to choose an education that best fits the learning style of the student will turn things around for our education system. 

Funding & Transparency

The way brick & mortar public schools are currently funded has been heavily scrutinized through the recent shutdowns. How our education dollars are being spent? The COVID shutdowns have made it clear that there are several non-essential expenditures in our county education systems. When schools reopen, it will give school districts the opportunity to re-evaluate their priorities and build their budget in such a way that puts our students first.