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News and Opinion Jun 22, 2020

Pamela Cantor M.D. and Jim Balfanz Op-Ed in The 74

Photo credit: The 74

Turnaround for Children Founder and Senior Science Advisor, Pamela Cantor, M.D.,  and City Year‘s Jim Balfanz wrote an op-ed in The 74 about how positive developmental relationships with caring adults can help students thrive during challenging times.

In the op-ed, Cantor and Balfanz acknowledge how the pandemic, the economic fallout and the continued violence against African Americans is disproportionately impacting communities of color, particularly Black students. Cantor suggests that in order to ensure student growth, resilience and educational equity, educators should prioritize the Three Rs – relationships, routines and resilience.

Balfanz suggests that schools should consider national service programs similar to the City Year AmeriCorps program, which increases the number of adults in schools who can form positive, trusting relationships with students.

In closing, Cantor and Balfanz note an opportunity for change:

With this knowledge and power, we have the opportunity to reimagine our education system so every child belongs, learns and thrives, even under the most challenging of circumstances, and in all environments. Do we have the will to do something with it? The answer should be a resounding “yes.”

The op-ed also appearead in the LA School Report in partnership with The 74.