SCHOOLS ARE IRREPLACEABLE—not just as places of learning, but as resource hubs that provide connections and opportunities for youth and families beyond classroom instruction. When schools across California closed their doors and went online in response to the spread of COVID-19, many students and their families lost access to this critical resource.
Now, districts in California are beginning the long process of getting students and educators back to in-person school. Without careful attention to equity and a focus on relationships, mental health, wellness, and healing, the return to school risks further failing to deliver on the promise of an equal education for all, especially for students of color, English-learners, LGBTQ students, rural students, students with special needs, and students in low-income communities.
This isn’t a time to return to a pre-pandemic status quo where your zip code determines the quality of your education. It should have never been that way.
With the record amount of state and federal funding flowing to school districts and local governments, we have a critical window of opportunity to transform our schools once and for all into nurturing communities committed to equity, diversity, and anti-racism. That begins by taking a restorative, whole-child approach that centers the leadership of students, families, and educators to reimagine California as a place where every student goes to an amazing, equitable school.
The California Partnership for the Future of Learning believes that investing in racially-just and relationship-centered community schools where every student, educator, and family thrives will allow everyone to heal from the pandemic and transform the future of California. To take advantage of this generational opportunity we must:
- CENTER RELATIONSHIPS
- ADDRESS WHOLE-CHILD NEEDS
- STRENGTHEN AND SUPPORT DIVERSE STAFFING & PARTNERSHIPS
- MAKE TEACHING & LEARNING RELEVANT & RIGOROUS
- EMPOWER TEAMS TO REBUILD & REIMAGINE SYSTEMS
Read California P4L’s Beacons of Hope Shared Story Brief