Secretary of the Smithsonian Lonnie G. Bunch III is the founding director of the Smithsonian's National Museum of African American History and Culture. Bunch joins Washington Post columnist Jonathan Capehart for a one-on-one conversation on the legacy of Juneteenth, the commemoration of the ending of slavery in the U.S. They discuss race, recent protests against police brutality, and his role as the first-ever African American Secretary of the Smithsonian.
The Supreme Court ruled Thursday that the Trump administration may not immediately proceed with its plan to end a program protecting about 700,000 young immigrants known as Dreamers from deportation. Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. wrote the majority opinion, joined by the court’s four more liberal members in upholding the program, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA. The DACA program was announced by President Barack Obama in 2012. It allows young people brought to the United States as children to apply for a temporary status that shields them from deportation and allows them to work. The status lasts for two years and is renewable, but it does not provide a path to citizenship. The court’s ruling means the Trump administration officials will have to provide a lower court with a more robust justification for ending the program.
The so-called coronavirus- or "COVID slide" may be especially troublesome for English-language learners, the 5 million students still learning English in the nation's K-12 schools. Many of them could fall farther behind because of a confluence of factors, including limited access to the internet and the language support services they often receive in school. Along with their native English-speaking peers, English-learners likely will face a battery of tests when school resumes to gauge what they've learned and lost during the extended school closures—but those assessments may not fully reflect what they know and can do in academic subjects, especially if they cannot demonstrate their knowledge in English. A new policy brief from the Migration Policy Institute explores the policy and practical questions for states considering implementing native-language assessments, tests that may be better suited to gauge what students know and what subjects they need support in apart from their English-language instruction.
Teachers across California are worried that students who are learning English will fall behind in their language skills due to the school closures and are trying various approaches to connect with those students and their families. Even as concerns have been raised about the quality of instruction for native English speakers, those who are still new to the language face an even greater hurdle. “The big missing element is that we learn language, usually, in a face-to-face context,” said Leslie Hubbert, who teaches 3rd grade in the small agricultural town of Boonville in Mendocino County. “And English language learners are not getting as much face-to-face contact as they need. It’s just another way that this gap is widening more and more.”
Schools around the world began reopening weeks ago, giving education leaders in the United States different playbooks to study as they wrangle with how to bring students back into buildings this fall. While no other country has been hit as hard by the COVID-19 pandemic as the United States, the early stories of reopening schools in other countries signal a path forward. District leaders here can adapt strategies used by educators in other countries to maintain social distancing and keep students safe. Education Week spoke to educators in Australia, Denmark, and Taiwan to learn about the measures and precautions they are taking as students return to school.
Teachers from across the country reflect on their experiences teaching during the COVID-19 outbreak. In this post, seven teachers describe the emotional experience of recent months and share some of the successes and challenges of emergency distance learning. From Larry Ferlazzo: : “I would have preferred to be able to spend more time with the English language learner newcomers because those are the students — That's one of the vulnerable populations that's going to take the biggest hit from missing these last few months of school. I think most students are going to be fine, right. But ELLs, special ed students and students who face other academic challenges, they're going to take a hit. So I hope that next year, whatever we do, that we look beyond equality and focus on equity so we can provide extra support to the students who need it the most.”