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Kids and counselor at a summer camp.

Dear colleagues and friends: 

The last four weeks have felt like a roller coaster transition from school to summer. My girls wrapped up third and first grades at our local school (replete with a salmon-themed end-of-year performance and classroom popsicle treats). After sorting through unending stacks of art, worksheets, and missed notices, we began cobbling together child care and day camps and setting up new routines and habits. This interstitial period has always struck me as the very most hopeful and challenging time of year; it is both a moment to celebrate and set intentions for the future as well as rest, heal, and reflect on the wins and losses of the year.

In many ways, the feelings I’m experiencing as a parent reflect those I’m holding generally as a professional. The last month brought both the return of joyous in-person graduations as well as needed rest for educators and learners after another extraordinary pandemic school year. It also brought continued grief for the preventable loss of student and teacher lives in Uvalde, TX and significant uncertainty generated by seismic Supreme Court decisions that will affect the lives of generations of families and students to come.  

It strikes me that holding this complexity and moving through it is the task. Our recognition of and grappling with the inequities and pain that exist must be held alongside our urgent hopes and resolve for a better present and future for every student. At TLA, we are so thankful to be in this work with you, building equitable, inspiring education systems in every community. We hope you are celebrating a year of growth and learning and getting some much-needed rest as we prepare for the year(s) ahead. As always, we share news and resources below for your thinking, and we look forward to hearing from you.

With thanks,

Beth Rabbitt, CEO

Featured Updates

New Release: Edtech Systems Guide in Partnership with MA DESE

TLA collaborated with the Massachusetts Department of Elementary & Secondary Education’s Office of Education Technology to develop a guide for edtech leaders in Massachusetts. This free EdTech Systems Guide offers support in developing and strengthening systems for edtech selection, implementation, and evaluation to ensure that edtech is effectively chosen, powerfully implemented, and properly assessed for effectiveness across the state. While this guide was created with Massachusetts in mind, school and system leaders can use this resource to inform their own edtech processes in districts across the country. TLA is excited to work on developing guides that center equity throughout the process and focus on the needs of every learner. 

Three children sitting on the ground outside looking at a laptop screen.

New Profiles of Virtual & Hybrid Schools

TLA is excited to announce the expansion of our selection of school profiles to include virtual and hybrid schools. Working alongside schools with established virtual and hybrid learning models, TLA documented best practices from innovative schools like The Forest School Online, VLACS, Map Academy, and Gem Prep Online. Stay tuned as we launch more virtual and hybrid school profiles on our Resources & Guidance site throughout July.

TLA Welcomes New Partner and Research Fellow

Ashley Fellows headshot

Ashley Fellows joins TLA as Partner, Practitioner Learning, leading our work with educators and the people who support them to capture and share promising practices, cultivate networks for learning, and tackle collective challenges across the field. She brings 14 years of experience in teaching, educator coaching and development, and school leadership to the team, most recently participating in a selective leadership development program with the Denver School of Science and Technology while leading her school’s pandemic response work. As a first-generation college student and educator/school leader of color, Ashley is deeply committed to disrupting inequitable education outcomes for students in every aspect of her work. Ashley graduated from the University of Denver with a bachelor’s degree in history and political science and holds a master’s degree in education from Arizona State University.  

Kirsten Elliot headshot

TLA has also welcomed 2022 Southern Education Leadership Initiative Fellow, Kirsten Elliott, to the team. Kirsten is a Ph.D. student at the University of Southern California’s Rossier School of Education, focusing her studies on educational equity and culturally relevant technology. She has been organizing and analyzing data on TLA’s first Strategy Lab: Virtual & Hybrid cohort. Her work will inform future Strategy Lab cohorts and TLA publications. (See more on the Southern Education Foundation in our partner highlight below!)

Other Recent TLA Perspectives and Publications 

Partner Highlight

Southern Education Foundation logo

The Southern Education Foundation (SEF) is a nonprofit advancing equitable education practices and policies for low-income students and students of color in southern states. The foundation’s work is accomplished through developing and disseminating research-based solutions for policymakers and growing the capacity of education leaders to create systemic change in K-12 and post-secondary education.

We are happy to share resources and opportunities from our partners. If you are interested in collaborating with TLA and learning more about how we can work together to make strides for education equity, please contact Jessica Mayorga.

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