Many public schools have defunded sports programs, and most offer physical education just a few days a week, reinforcing a pay-to-play youth sports culture with few free and low-cost opportunities at a time when they are most needed.
When students are encouraged to explore exactly who they are and who their classmates are — and not to expect everyone to conform to one homogenous view of the world — school becomes not just a place of education, but one of humanity.
California school districts are developing "graduate profiles" that help focus teaching and learning on ensuring students can think critically and creatively, collaborate with others, tackle real problems and contribute to society.
After the devastating emotional and mental toll of the pandemic, it is almost unthinkable to imagine asking students to learn to read, play an instrument, or solve algebra equations without first rebuilding a nurturing and safe environment.
Young people need role models. That means that educators, families, and policymakers must show what it looks like to have empathy, to solve problems collaboratively, and to insist on perspective-taking.