Whether students return to school in person or continue with distance learning, this year it’s vital for families and educators to work together to support children who learn and think differently. As students who learn and think differently enter a school year unlike any before, Understood’s back-to-school resources center around the power of parent-teacher relationships.
Our goal is to help strengthen communication and collaboration between families and educators by providing information about:
- Safety considerations for students who learn and think differently
- Special education during the pandemic
- Social-emotional learning for students with and without disabilities
- How to address the impact of the COVID slide
- Accessibility approaches for in-person and distance learning
- Creating a safe space for open conversations about racial injustice
Many children will be entering the virtual and physical classrooms of teachers they’ve never met before. By sharing information about how students fared this past spring, families and educators can start the school year strong. A lot of kids have experienced trauma or food insecurity, or they’ve had loved ones pass away. Open communication can help educators understand each student’s unique needs and situations.
Juliana Urtubey, an Understood Teacher Fellow and fourth- and fifth-grade special education teacher in Las Vegas, is also prioritizing parent-teacher collaboration to ensure that the school can make thoughtful considerations on the child’s behalf. “The only way educators and schools can do that is through close and genuine partnership with families,” says Juliana. “No matter what the need is, let us know. No matter what the challenge is, let us know.”
Understood, teachers, and families are working toward the same goal: exceptional care and education for all students.