How an unprecedented, indefinite crisis forced education leaders to change the ways school districts operate

Snowstorms. Hurricanes. Shootings. Educators and the students they serve have long been at the mercy of crises; most have some sort of plan for disasters.

But with coronavirus, a new national emergency forced districts to rewrite their playbooks. While it’s obvious how COVID-19 changed the structure of school, what’s less known is how districts had to overhaul their operations.

To continue working safely, they had to change, and fast: Lengthy in-person meetings went online, where districts had more control over interactions and public input. Transparency laws changed. Some districts, like Seattle Public Schools, enabled superintendents to spend large sums of money without bureaucracy through the end of the 2019-2020 school year. And many local districts did not let reporters observe their first days of classes, citing privacy concerns and technical issues.

more about this project

Schooling solutions amid COVID-19

This story was produced with support from the Education Writers Association

Read More

Former Glossier Employees Demand Change With Letter Accusing Company Of Mistreatment

A group of former Glossier retail employees sent a letter to the beauty and skin care brand demanding “accountability” and “change” amid accusations that the company’s culture has been far from inclusive.

Over the weekend, “a collective of former Glossier retail employees” banded together to create a series of social media accounts called “Outta the Gloss,” a riff on Glossier’s blog, “Into the Gloss.” Additionally, they put together a Medium post outlining accusations against the company with anecdotes from employees’ time at the company.

Earlier this month, Glossier announced that it would be closing all of its physical stores and laying off its retail staff, who had been furloughed since June.

The open letter addressed “hostile” interactions retail employees allegedly experienced in the stores, the human resources department being a “dead-end resource,” “rat-infested” workspaces, an environment that touted “anti-Blackness,” and a “work culture that renders its broadest tier of employees

Read More

Recovery or separation for Messi as Barcelona face up to change

Lionel Messi’s body language said it all as Barcelona were sent into full-blown meltdown in their historic Champions League quarter-final humiliation at the hands of Bayern Munich on Friday.

He could only look on helplessly as the club to which he has brought so much glory succumbed to a record 8-2 defeat in Lisbon.

By the end, even with the ball he could not make anything happen — he was robbed of possession in his own half to start the move which brought Bayern’s seventh goal at the Estadio da Luz.

Earlier, in a photo taken through the door of what appears to be Barca’s changing room at half-time and which has widely circulated online, Messi can be seen sitting alone at the end of his bench, turned away, wearing both the captain’s armband and a look of total resignation. 

He looked beaten as he stared at the floor with

Read More

6 Ways 2020 Will Change Our Children, According to Psychologists & Pediatricians

Hey Mama, how ya doing? Hanging on by a thread? Same, same.

But amidst all the worrying about schools and pods and daily case counts, many parents are also up at night with a far more existential question: How will this absolutely bonkers year affect our children, long-term?

We checked in with the experts—two pediatricians and a pediatric psychologist—to learn what they’re seeing, what they’re fearing and how they think the current world will shape our kids’ lives. (Spoiler: It’s not all bad.) 

1. Kids will be more technologically savvy and computer literate

Does your 4-year-old now know how to un-mute himself? Is your budding Mia Hamm completely comfortable with Zoom soccer lessons? While we parents may look on in horror, the fact is that this pandemic will inevitably make our children more computer literate, and that’s not necessarily a bad thing.

Says pediatric phycologist Dr. Ann-Louise Lockhart, “Due to

Read More

One woman weathers a career change and upside-down car loan to pay off $133,000 in debt

One-third of adults age 30 or younger have student loan debt, with the median burden hovering at $17,000. In Debt Diaries, we introduce you to those who took on their debt and came away with a better understanding of themselves. Their testimonials offer hope — and tools — to show that you, too, can overcome debt.

Amanda Williams is the founder and owner of Debt Free in Sunny CA, where she helps guide others to debt-free living by sharing tips, and fostering an in-person and online community. She and her husband, Josh, celebrated paying off more than $133,000 in debt in less than four years on July 5, 2018.

Amanda Williams Debt Diaries Profile (ABC Photo Illustration / Photo Courtesy Amanda Williams)

How Amanda’s student loan debt began

I took out private student loans to go to school for massage therapy. After graduating, I worked on several cruise ships

Read More

5 ways COVID-19 will change higher education forever, and how colleges can adapt

The coronavirus pandemic is changing higher education. Campuses are closed, students are taking classes online, and the number of colleges announcing budget cuts and furloughs is growing. Students, faculty, staff, families and others are wondering what comes next.

It’s a transformative moment for higher education. But the trends driving the disruption are not new or unexpected.

Higher education has been going through a disruptive phase for at least the past decade, as highlighted by the steady drumbeat of commentary from Clay Christensen and others, who predicted that as many as half of all U.S. colleges and universities would close within the next 15 years.

The disruption has been slow, making it too easy for many in higher education to argue that it wasn’t happening. Now, COVID-19 is accelerating the change at breath taking speed. The trends are speeding up rapidly and will cut deep and in unexpected ways. We will

Read More

Pac-12 player movement for change is positive, but unrealistic

Close your eyes for a minute and begin to ponder the drumbeat leading up to the 2021 college football season. The COVID-19 pandemic will – insert a word synonymous with a prayer emoji – be mercifully in the rear-view mirror. The normal rhythms of media days, full-contact fall camps and 12-game schedules lie ahead. The only relevant conversations about masks will involve 15-yard penalties.

That coveted slice of normalcy feels light years away, as college football remains shrouded in uncertainty by the coronavirus and beset by debilitating budget issues.

Here’s the reality we saw over a chaotic weekend. That normalcy we’ve longed for – when it finally arrives – is going to bring a jarring new normal with it. Whether this is a better place for college sports will be the upcoming decade’s bar debate.

Within a calendar year, college athletics will be operating in a seismically different way. There’s

Read More

Maryland colleges are planning for students to return to campus. But that could all change.

The incoming freshmen had barely taken their first tentative steps onto the campus of McDaniel College in Westminster when it became clear this would be no ordinary orientation.

Among the swag they received: face masks in McDaniel’s signature green. The setting: the Gill Center, normally home to the school’s Green Terror basketball team, where blue painter’s tape marked safe distances on the bleachers and hallways. The message: Welcome, and please stay 6 feet apart.

This wasn’t quite what Shakia McKinnon expected college would be like when as a student at Green Street Academy in Baltimore she plotted her next educational step.

But with the coronavirus looming overhead, students will find campus life upended: Much of class time will transfer from in-person to online. Many students will reside in single dormitory rooms rather than with roommates. And sports, concerts and other events have been canceled.

McKinnon is not deterred but rather

Read More

TV ‘trailblazer’ Ed Ansin, who helped change the flavor of news, dies in Miami at 84

A leader. A philanthropist. And a trailblazer who changed the television news industry forever.

Those are the words anchors, reporters and producers are using to describe Ed Ansin, owner of South Florida’s WSVN-Channel 7 in Miami. Ansin died Sunday at 84.

“Far from a hands off owner, Ed Ansin walked through the doors of WSVN-TV every day … He was a true leader, not just by title, but by example,” WSVN said in a statement on its website. “Ansin told the Boston Globe, ‘I want to die with my boots on,’ and that’s what he did. Ansin was in the office just this past Friday still doing what he loved.”

WSVN news anchor Alex De Armas wrote on Instagram that they had recently walked out of the station together and had their regular conversation about lunch. He was going to have Oggi, his “usual.”

11/2/98 Al Diaz/Herald staff--Ed Ansin and son James at the Channel 7 studio.
11/2/98 Al Diaz/Herald staff–Ed Ansin and
Read More

Thousands of you told us you want California to change. We want to hear from even more of you

The 110 Freeway leads south toward downtown Los Angeles. <span class="copyright">(Robert Gauthier / Los Angeles Times)</span>
The 110 Freeway leads south toward downtown Los Angeles. (Robert Gauthier / Los Angeles Times)

It was almost three months ago, but it might as well have been another epoch: In early May, the L.A. Times Opinion section asked readers to envision life in California after the pandemic and share with us their thoughts on what the COVID-19 health and economic crisis reveals about us as a society, and what transformations may be necessary to heal the trauma.

And respond our readers did — more than 3,700 of you. With such a large volume of responses, the topics covered were diverse, but there were some areas of broad agreement among our readers — namely, that government should expand its role in healthcare and the economy to prevent a crisis such as COVID-19 from causing so much shock. Traffic, housing and the environment were also on the top of readers’ minds;

Read More