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News and Opinion Jun 7, 2020

The 74: D.C. Public Schools Chancellor Ferebee On Work with Turnaround

Chancellor Lewis Ferebee

In an interview with The 74, D.C. Public Schools (DCPS) Chancellor Lewis Ferebee cited the school district’s collaboration with Turnaround for Children in its coronavirus recovery and fall school reopening plans.

Ferebee explained that as DCPS prepares for the fall semester, the district is seeking to determine the best way to assess students and gauge the extent of their learning during the school closings associated with the coronavirus pandemic. He outlined the district’s approach to addressing the mental health of adults and students, stressing the need for strong positive relationships:

“…We will pivot to developing strong relationships and trust with students — what language should we be using [in class]? And then we are going to provide a very intensive, trauma-responsive school model. We’ve already had a relationship with Turnaround for Children, and we’ve partnered with them to go even deeper with that work over the summer and well into the school year. And what that would mean from a practical standpoint for teaching and learning is we’re going to need to check on our students and their relationships before we start to open up books and our laptops.”

Turnaround is participating in DCPS’ “Reopen Strong” virtual professional development sessions for elementary and secondary school leaders.

Read the full article on The 74.