The ECLC Team
Check out our new ECLC Fall Community Convenings flyer below for details on our drop-in meetings over the next few months, on the third Tuesday of every month from 3:00-4:30pm. All ECLC members across Cohorts 1 and 2 are welcome and no pre-registration is required!
The ECLC Team
Last week, ECLC was profiled in The Gloucester Times by guest columnists Stratton Lloyd and Michelle Xiarhos Curran as an effective approach for addressing the impact of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic upon learning in Essex County. Check out an excerpt here:
For both youth and adult learners, the COVID-19 pandemic has thrown a wrench into a system already burdened by deeply rooted challenges and inequities. The virus didn’t just blow through, damaging the walls of a structure that could easily be rebuilt. Rather, it stormed in like a tornado and exposed the faulty lines of our educational foundation. The pivot to virtual learning has exposed a deep digital divide between those with and without access. Educators, already tapped before the pandemic, are burning out trying to meet the evolving needs of their students while caring for their own health and families. There is the annual “summer slide,” which disproportionately affects economically disadvantaged and minority students. And now there’s “COVID slide,” which some experts predict will be defined by as much as six to 12 months of learning loss, and the “COVID career slide,” which hinders adult learners from pursuing advanced education – and, subsequently, higher wage jobs – because of heightened anxieties about cost.
The good news is that pre-pandemic systems work to start dismantling foundational challenges and inequities across Essex County – work proudly supported by ECCF – continues today. And at its core, this work aims to solve our region’s most pressing issues at their roots, which COVID has so starkly reminded us is crucial if our systems are to be resilient in the future.
Strengthening K-12 by creating a network of support.
When COVID-19 forced the physical closure of public schools, 11 of Essex County’s districts – serving more than 35,000 students – had immediate access to critical resources as members of the first two cohorts of the Essex County Learning Community (ECLC), an intensive, two-year professional development experience funded in large part by the Peter and Elizabeth C. Tower Foundation. It is aimed at helping local educators better meet the diverse needs of students with learning disabilities, learning and attention issues and exposure to trauma – as well as those who experience systemic bias related to race, ethnicity, language, income and gender.
In the midst of a global pandemic, this work has become more important than ever before. “Our mission has met its moment,” said Jane Feinberg, director of the ECLC.
You can read the full article here, and please share widely with your networks!
Join Our Partner Essex County Community Foundation for Webinar on the Digital Divide in Essex County...
The ECLC Team
STRIVING FOR DIGITAL EQUITY
A report on the challenges and opportunities the Digital Divide presents to Essex County
The COVID-19 pandemic has intensified the Digital Divide in Essex County as residents have been forced to transition their lives online. Suddenly, education, healthcare, employment and other critical services are unreachable for those without the means or ability to shift to a fully digital world.
To better understand these challenges and explore real opportunities for equity, ECCF partnered with the Center for State Policy Analysis at Tisch College, Tufts University to produce a baseline analysis of how the Digital Divide impacts each of Essex County’s 34 cities and towns.
YOU ARE INVITED to join ECCF and other local community leaders for a Zoom presentation of the Digital Divide data and learnings.
Together, we will...
YOU ARE A CRITICAL VOICE IN THIS CONVERSATION.
Join us for this special event.
Tuesday, October 20
9:00 AM - 10:30 AM
RSVP by October 16
Special thanks to our Corporate Partners for making this event possible.
The ECLC Team
This fall, ECLC's second cohort will embark upon a professional journey around universal design for learning (UDL), an evidence-based framework for inclusive practice. The upcoming UDL Professional Development (PD) Series will be open to ECLC Cohort 2 district participants from Andover, Essex North Shore Agricultural & Technical School, Hamilton-Wenham, Manchester-Essex, and Saugus Public Schools. The Series is titled "Universal Design for Learning: Managing Change for the Pandemic and Beyond," and will begin on Tuesday, November 10th.
Last year's UDL PD Series for Cohort 1 received overwhelmingly positive feedback. Led by Dr. Gabbie Rapolt-Schlichtmann, Cohort 1 districts worked on reflection around universal design and accessibility for every learner, along with empathy mapping. You can read more about this UDL training experience that our first cohort of districts completed here on the blog.
It seemed ironic to us that legislators and architects were working very hard to ensure that educational buildings were universally acceptable, but no such movement pursued universal accessibility for the methods and materials used inside the buildings--the curriculum.
--David Rose, Founder of Universal Design for Learning
Universal Design for Learning (UDL) is a framework that is focused on proactive, goal-driven design to support learner variability. UDL recognizes that many learners’ difficulties in the classroom can be attributed to the learning environment, not the learner. When educators design more accessible environments, a much greater number of learners can be successful in the general classroom—whether in a live, hybrid or distance format. With UDL, educators can work smarter, not harder, especially during such a demanding time.
About Our Series
Gabrielle Rapolt-Schlichtmann and Laura Vanderberg, two seasoned learning scientists who specialize in UDL, bring a unique equity lens to the framework. This series will be tailored around the current context, the unique needs of our Cohort 2 schools, and the SEL focus that your districts have chosen as an ECLC theme.
The series will consist of four virtual 2.5-hour sessions over several months, with customized coaching and asynchronous pilot work between sessions. Each district is asked to select a team of 15 participants who will become equipped to help lead the adoption of UDL in the district. Administrators and teachers are encouraged to participate.
Dates: Tuesday 11/10/20, Tuesday 11/24/20, Thursday 12/10/20, and Thursday 1/7/21
Please contact Diana or Emily for more information about registration for Cohort 2 members, at firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com.