Navigating back-to-school during the pandemic

Back-to-school time is upon us. What normally would be a time filled with making final preparations to welcome new students, soaking up the last days of summer vacation, and feeling excitement mixed with nervous jitters of starting a new school year, is instead wrought with stress and anxiety felt by many families and teachers. 

The stressors are numerous and wide-ranging, and likely come as no surprise to our audience. Parents and caregivers are not sure how they’re going to work and care for their children at the same time. Families are wondering what virtual learning will be like and/or how to get and use the technology they need in order to be successful. Some are also concerned with meeting the basic needs of their families, or are facing evictions. Teachers are concerned with reaching all of their students and families and helping them address basic needs while also making academic gains. Everyone is concerned with making the right choices for the health and safety of their families.

With all of this in mind, NCFL recently hosted a panel conversation on Facebook, discussing how to manage emotional health while heading into the new school year. Allison Miller, Family Learning Specialist at NCFL, was joined by Lauren DeGeorge, Director of Programs at Backside Learning Center (Louisville, Ky); Elena Diehl, Founder of GrowBabyGrow (Louisville, Ky); and Julie Hilton, Early Childhood Instructional Coach at Jefferson County Public Schools (Louisville, Ky).

Panelists discussed a variety of topics, ranging from resources to help families manage the emotional toll of our present situation and practice self-care to ways teachers can support families emotionally.

Watch the full replay here: