Student Well-Being Video

Ideas for How to Build Confident, Engaged Learners Now

By Jaclyn Borowski — September 28, 2020 18:11

COVID-19 toppled every best-laid plan that schools have had for their students. Beginning in March, as educators scrambled to figure out their best instructional options, they often struggled to get a sense of whether their students even had some of their basic needs covered, like internet access or a space to work, in order to pursue remote learning. When in late May, as the pandemic continued unabated, the largest movement in U.S. history erupted with a national call for racial justice. Students and their educators stood up and took notice. Many stories are coming to light of educators working with young people, taking advantage of this inflection point to help define, build, and develop with students what it means to reflect on their own well-being, as well as serve the larger, collective good. There are also accounts of young people leading the charge in some instances, demonstrating motivation, leadership, commitment to community, and civic awareness in ways that no one could have anticipated. What does that look like? And who are the educators—and the students—who are leading this charge? What lessons can educators, researchers, and policymakers glean from these examples in order to apply them to learning going forward? And what might these promising approaches of elevating character have to say about the future direction of our schools, social institutions, and workforce?

Jaclyn Borowski is the visuals editor for Education Week leading video and photo initiatives.

Elizabeth Rich, Opinion Editor; Kevin Bushweller, Assistant Managing Editor; Director of Editorial/Business Collaboration; Mary Hendrie, Deputy Opinion Editor; and Stephen Sawchuk, Associate Editor contributed to this video.
Coverage of character education and development is supported in part by a grant from The Kern Family Foundation, at www.kffdn.org. Education Week retains sole editorial control over the content of this coverage.

Video

Equity & Diversity Video An Educator Asks, ‘How Do We Define Diversity?’
An administrator at a Seattle independent school discusses the importance of considering the many elements that make a school diverse.
Equity & Diversity Collection VIDEOS: K-12 Staff Diversity Matters. Here's Why
The lack of teacher diversity dates back to the establishment of America's public school system. A look at the history and some early signs of hope.
Elizabeth Room smiles a welcome to the integrated group of kindergarten students at John Muir Elementary School in Berkeley, California on Sept. 11, 1968, as full integration of all schools got underway.
Elizabeth Room smiles a welcome to the integrated group of kindergarten students at John Muir Elementary School in Berkeley, California on Sept. 11, 1968, as full integration of all schools got underway.
AP
Recruitment & Retention Video Black Principals: How Schools Can Hire and Support Them
People of color have long been underrepresented in the teacher ranks. The disparity is even greater among administrators.
5:02
Leslie Alexander, right, talks with North Forsyth High School Assistant Principal of Instruction La Quisha Linder about what to expect while interviewing for the Winson-Salem/Forsyth County School District principal talent pool. Alexander is the Area Superintendent of Leadership Development and is working to develop a principal workforce that is representative of the district's demographics.
Leslie Alexander, right, talks with North Forsyth High School Assistant Principal of Instruction La Quisha Linder about what to expect while interviewing for the Winson-Salem/Forsyth County School District principal talent pool. Alexander is the Area Superintendent of Leadership Development and is working to develop a principal workforce that is representative of the district's demographics.
Alex Boerner for Education Week
Equity & Diversity Video Why Latino Representation on School Boards Matters and How to Make it Happen
School board decisions impact every aspect of students' education. A look at the value of Latino representation and work being done to get more elected.
5:23
Stephanie Parra, Governing Board Member at Phoenix Union School District and Executive Director of ALL in Education Arizona, sits for a portrait at the nonprofit’s space at Galvanize Phoenix in downtown Phoenix, Ariz. on Nov. 15, 2021. Phoenix Union is majority BIPOC students, but school board and educator demographics in Arizona lag behind in representation and opportunity.
Stephanie Parra, Governing Board Member at Phoenix Union School District and Executive Director of ALL in Education Arizona, sits for a portrait at the nonprofit’s space at Galvanize Phoenix in downtown Phoenix, Ariz. on Nov. 15, 2021. Phoenix Union is majority BIPOC students, but school board and educator demographics in Arizona lag behind in representation and opportunity.
Caitlin O’Hara for Education Week