Teaching Interactive

Reasons for Hope

Amid a persisting pandemic, educators and students are optimistic about the new school year
By Jaclyn Borowski , Kaylee Domzalski, Eric Harkleroad, Emma Patti Harris & Brooke Saias — August 26, 2021 1 min read
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Students and teachers are returning to their classrooms for a third school year disrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic. In many communities, rancor and division over masks, vaccines, and teaching about race and America’s history of racism compound the disruption.

But for the teachers, principals, school nurses, librarians, counselors, and superintendents who were celebrated in the early months of the pandemic for going above and beyond for their students, and adapting amid unprecedented circumstances, they’re ready and they’re hopeful.

In a series of videos, students and educators from across the United States share what they’re hopeful for as they head into the 2021-22 school year. Gathered from June through August, the voices of these educators and kids reflect the changing state of the pandemic during the summer. For those we talked to in June, it seemed a normal school year was in reach, while those we spoke to in more recent weeks were seeing Delta’s surge disrupt the start of their new academic year.

Click on each state below to view the videos:

Browse videos by occupation below:

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This project is sponsored by Scholastic. Education Week retains sole editorial control over the content of this coverage.

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