Independent Schools Association of the Southwest

Education News

News

By Denise Pope, NAIS (from September 25, 2020)
Before COVID-19, many students were stressed out and overworked, racing to complete assignments. A typical day might have started before 7 a.m. and ended after 11 p.m. because of sports, other extracurriculars, paid work, commuting, family obligations, and homework.
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By Peter Gow, Sarah Hanawald, Liz Katz, & Brad Rathgeber Independent School Magazine (Fall 2020)
This past spring, schools adapted as quickly as they could to truly unprecedented circumstances. Closing physical campuses and rapidly moving teachers, students, and parents to an online learning environment was perhaps the greatest challenge that many heads of school had ever faced. Many parents expressed gratitude as schools pivoted, solidified logistics, and achieved a steady state of functioning. School leaders, however, still grappled with one challenging group: parents who struggled to reconcile online learning with their expectations of what a school should be.
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By Thomas L. Friedman, The New York Times (from October 20, 2020)
The good Lord works in mysterious ways. He (She?) threw a pandemic at us at the exact same time as a tectonic shift in the way we will learn, work and employ. Fasten your seatbelt. When we emerge from this corona crisis, we're going to be greeted with one of the most profound eras of Schumpeterian creative destruction ever — which this pandemic is both accelerating and disguising.
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By Sarah Manes, EAB (from October 15, 2020)
In the wake of the anti-black police violence our country experienced over the summer and increased demands for racial justice, many independent schools are looking inward at how their policies and practices may contribute to racial inequity. Many alumni have signaled to schools through social media and other feedback channels, that they experienced racism during their tenure, highlighting the need for honest evaluation of institutional practices, including those related to advancement. While an inclusive school community is critical to student success, many EAB partners have also acknowledged that it is important for ensuring long-term financial sustainability and engaging donors.
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By Lee Gardner, The Chronicle of Higher Education (from October 28, 2020)
The pandemic has locked down parts of the country for more than seven months now, and colleges have made it at least halfway through their fall terms. What have they learned? Which predictions from the spring came true?
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By Rachel M. Cohen, The American Prospect (from October 28, 2020)
Many families are desperate to get their kids back to school, and many political leaders agree, worried about harm to children's educations and believing that key to fixing the economy is making it easier for parents to work. But the pandemic, which is still raging and getting worse nationwide, has made many of these school plans more challenging, if not elusive. It's also led to one of the most politicized and divisive debates in America: Can we safely reopen schools?
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By Lee Gardner, The Chronicle of Higher Education (from October 29, 2020)
People looking for clues about higher education's future fiscal health saw reasons for worry in a new report by Moody's Investors Service. The bond-rating agency announced on Wednesday that, for the first time in the 12-year history of its annual tuition survey, both private and public colleges are likely to lose net tuition revenue in the 2021 fiscal year.
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By Jennifer Gonzalez, Cult of Pedagogy (from September 29, 2020)
Let's go back for a moment to a simpler time, back to 2019 when you may have "struggled to differentiate." When you tried to meet the needs of all students who came to you with different levels of readiness, who had different physical, emotional, and cognitive profiles, and who learned best under different scenarios.
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By Jeffrey Sheilds, Net Assets (from October 7, 2020)
The NBOA Board of Directors convened last week for our fall meeting. Like you and your schools' boards of trustees, we are charged with conducting good nonprofit governance in a socially distant videoconference setting. All of us have important work to do.
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By Emily Oster, The Atlantic (from October 9, 2020)
In early August, the first kids in America went back to school during the pandemic. Many of these openings happened in areas where cases were high or growing: in Georgia, Indiana, Florida. Parents, teachers, and scientists feared what might happen next. The New York Times reported that, in parts of Georgia, a school of 1,000 kids could expect to see 20 or 30 people arrive with COVID-19 during week one. Many assumed that school infections would balloon and spread outward to the broader community, triggering new waves. On social media, people shared pictures of high schools with crowded hallways and no masking as if to say I told you so.
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By Eric Hudson & Kawai Lai, Global Online Academy (from October 15, 2020)
There's an enormous amount of change happening in education right now, change that has both required rapid response and has raised long-term questions about school. Leaders have had to balance supporting students, staff, and community members in the moment while looking ahead and strategizing for the future.
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By Stacey Colino, The Washington Post (from September 22, 2020)
If ever there were a time for people to know the important skills that make up what mental health experts refer to as "psychological first aid," a pandemic is it. Like regular first aid, PFA is a way of helping someone in pain — except rather than cleaning and bandaging a cut or applying ice to a sprained ankle, you tend to someone's anxiety or distress in a way that will ease it and help restore a sense of equanimity. Many disaster responders and public health professionals have been trained in PFA, but it's time for the rest of us to join them, so we can help our families, our friends and ourselves.
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By Christopher S. Maynard, Net Assets (from September 10, 2020)
How should independent schools record Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans on their Statement of Financial Position? The answer to this question is not as binary as it may first appear. Some argue that PPP disbursements are true loans and should be recorded as debt, but others maintain that those funds should be considered revenue since the loans will be forgiven. Unfortunately, the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB), IRS and the Small Business Administration (SBA) have not definitively stated how independent schools should account for PPP loans. We must instead rely on non-binding technical advice and industry practice to guide us.
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By Aaron De Smet, McKinsey & Co. (from September 17, 2020)
Look around and you'll see grief everywhere—that stew of loss, longing, and other emotions we experience when something we value and feel connection to is gone. During the COVID-19 pandemic, everyone has suffered losses—for some, it's the loss of loved ones; for others, the loss of routines and the familiar, the missed family gatherings or coffee with friends, the canceled vacations and postponed weddings, even the loss of going into the office every day. The sources of loss, big and small, are radiating across our work and personal lives.
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