Reaching Out to All Essex County Principals for Soul of Leadership PD Series Kicking Off in February 2021!
The ECLC Team
We are calling upon all principals in Essex County public schools to consider joining ECLC for a unique leadership development experience designed specifically for you, called Soul of Leadership. In this time of unprecedented challenges posed by the coronavirus pandemic, as well as a national reckoning on racial justice, we deeply believe that your role as school leaders and your well-being are crucial. In order to be able to lead and thrive, you need time to slow down, reflect with your peers, nurture your personal resilience, and expand your capacity to build a trusting and culturally responsive school community.
This complimentary, four-part series is free of charge and will be capped at 25 participants. Slots are already filling up, so please take this opportunity to sign up before we reach capacity and close registration. Registration information is available here.
You can find more information about this opportunity, including presenters/facilitators, dates/times upon which the series will be held, and who to contact with questions in the flyer below. Please feel free to reach out any time to ECLC Project Manager Emily Wilson. We hope you will be part of this exciting series, which is made possible thanks to generous support from the Essex County Community Foundation and The Tower Foundation.
The ECLC Team
As 2020 draws to a close, we want to encourage our members to take full advantage of the Fall 2020 PD programming that ECLC provided this season on a range of timely topics from best/emerging practices for remote learning to universal design for learning (UDL). All of the resources from the Fall 2020 PD sessions are archived and available for ECLC educators and districts in our secure District Hub, which is exclusively available to you as a member of our learning community and located on ECLC’s website. These resources typically include recorded sessions, curated readings, slide decks, and more. If you misplaced your password for the District Hub, please reach out to Emily Wilson, ECLC Project Manager, for assistance at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Also, here are some photos from within the community during the Fall 2020 PD season - thank you to our members for being part of this learning community. We are wishing everyone a peaceful, restful winter holiday season and a renewal in the new year for 2021!
The ECLC Team
ECLC's monthly newsletter, Learning in Community, brings current news highlights and resources from within the Essex County Learning Community as well as the region to our membership. The newsletter is archived monthly on our website. Please visit our "About Us/Newsletter" page to access our current newsletter edition for the month of November and all past editions from 2019 through 2020. If you are interested in joining our mailing list to receive Learning in Community regularly, please reach out to Emily Wilson, ECLC Project Manager, at email@example.com and request to be added to our newsletter list.
As we near the end of 2020, we wanted to take a moment and remind our members to check out the ECLC District Hub for all PD resources. Not able to attend one of the fall PD sessions this season? Looking for that helpful resource or slide deck you saw at this year’s ECLC Summer Institute? Want to grab a refresher of this spring’s PD series on Teaching and Learning in a Pandemic?
All resources for ECLC educators and districts are regularly archived in our secure District Hub, which is exclusively available to you as a member of our learning community and located on ECLC’s website. The Hub is password protected and limited to ECLC members. If you misplaced your password to access the Hub, please feel free to reach out to Emily Wilson, ECLC Project Manager, for assistance at firstname.lastname@example.org
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 email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org.
Last Month's Summer Institute 2020 a Resounding Success: Visit Conference Site and District Hub for Resources!
On August 4th through 6th, ECLC held its annual Summer Institute virtually for the first time due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Also for the first time, we brought together ECLC Cohorts 1 and 2, along with special guests from other districts and partner organizations. Participants were invited to engage around this year’s theme, "Cultivating Belonging and Resilience in Uncertain Times,” which was developed with the challenging pandemic conditions before us and a new virtual world in mind. We want to thank our partners, guest expert faculty, participants, and the ECLC project team for an amazing professional development event full of learning and growth across all three days of Summer Institute. Your contributions allowed us to foster community in new ways on a virtual platform, and this collaboration would not otherwise have been possible without you. We received overwhelmingly positive feedback from your evaluations, and we look forward to following up and incorporating your insights from the virtual Summer Institute into our fall lineup of professional development offerings!
If you have not done so already, please visit ECLC’s Summer Institute Conference Website and our District Hub for all Summer Institute resources. Conference-related readings, including recent articles by our guest expert faculty on teaching/learning topics are available through the Conference Website. Slide decks, handouts, and foundational workshop session recordings/transcripts can be found on the District Hub, which is password protected. We ask that you do not share slides outside of ECLC districts without permission from presenters, in order to protect the intellectual property of our guest expert faculty. If you need a password to access the District Hub, please reach out to Emily Wilson, at email@example.com. Last but not least, we invite you to visit the Virtual Goody Bag section of the Summer Institute Conference Website for some curated fun we hope you will enjoy!
Summer greetings ECLC member districts and friends of ECLC! As many of you know, ECLC's newsletter Learning in Community transitioned from a regular monthly format to a weekly digest back in March, in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and our efforts to keep in close touch with our member districts.
This summer, we will be transitioning back to a monthly format, and have archived all past weekly and monthly Learning in Community editions from 2019-2020 on ECLC's website so that ECLC members and friends of ECLC can access them!
Please visit this link to view all past editions in PDF format. The next issue of Learning in Community will be published and shared electronically in late July 2020. If you would like to receive our monthly newsletter to your inbox, please contact Emily Wilson, at ewilson [at] fullframecommunications.com to sign up.
Wishing you a safe and healthy summer from ECLC!