Students are feeling stressed; so are their teachers

The mental and emotional health of students is becoming just as important during COVID-19 as their academic development. Two recent surveys have examined the social and emotional well-being of K-12 students but from opposing sides — one focused on the students and the other focused on teachers. Both were undertaken by companies that sell products and services to help teachers teach or participate in well-being activities.  READ MORE

School’s reopen…Business as usual?

Even amid the uncertainty of what the school year will look like in the fall, teachers are itching to get back to some semblance of normalcy. Greeting students at the door each morning, chatting with them about their weekend, providing in-person feedback on projects and facilitating student-led conversations are among the many joys we miss during this pandemic.  READ MORE

CASE Statement on Equity and Social Justice

June 3, 2020
Dear Colleagues,
The Council of Administrators of Special Education (CASE) is dedicated to the enhancement of the worth, dignity, potential, and uniqueness of each individual in society and we reaffirm these commitments and beliefs as leaders in the field of special education today. We recognize, however, that beliefs and commitments are not enough and, as an organization, we believe the systemic conditions and underlying factors including institutional racism resulting in the deaths of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, and Breonna Taylor and many other untold victims require immediate actions to redress the harms caused. Our country is in the midst of two national crises – the COVID-19 pandemic and the racial unrest. Both of these crises are disproportionately impacting communities and individuals of color across our country.
We can and must do more. CASE commits to working with its members across the country to strengthen our systems, engage in difficult conversations, and develop resources to bring about meaningful, positive change so the civil rights of everyone, and in particular, those who have been marginalized in society, are honored. In the words of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.” CASE will engage in a planning process to ensure our policies and positions are inclusive. We will also focus on strategies to increase the representation of people of color in leadership roles in special education across the country. We will consider actions and mindsets that center equity, inclusion, respect, collaboration, deep listening, and unity in a way that brings us all together toward better outcomes. Members or others with specific ideas about how to undertake this important work should contact Phyllis Wolfram at pwolfram@casecec.org or our President, Erin Maguire at emaguire@ewsd.org.
In partnership,
Erin Maguire, President
Dr. Mike Asip, Unit Development Chair
Dr. Pam Baker, Product Committee Chair
Dr. Mary Lynn Boscardin, Journal Editor
Dr. Julie Bost, Membership Committee Chair
Eric Hoppstock, Treasurer
Dr. Adam Leckie, Publications Chair
Myrna Mandlawitz, Legislative Consultant
Kindel Mason, President-Elect
Gary Myrah, Past-President
Heath Peine, Professional Development Chair
Dr. Kevin Rubenstein, Policy and Legislative Chair
Dr. Gina Scala, Research Chair
Greta Stanfield, Secretary
Carrie Turner, Technology & Communications Chair
Phyllis Wolfram, Executive Director
About CASE
CASE, The Council of Administrators of Special Education, is the largest division of the Council for Exceptional Children. With close to 4900 members, it is the professional organization of choice for special education administrators across the country. CASE’s mission is to provide leadership and support to members by shaping policies and practices that impact the quality of education. Disclaimer: The views, opinions, and information expressed in this statement by CASE may not reflect the official policies or positions of the Council for Exceptional Children (CEC). CONTACT: Phyllis Wolfram at (417)-427-7720

Addressing teacher burnout during the pandemic

It’s hard to believe two months have passed since Edutopia contributor Carly Berwick wrote about her school’s sudden closure for the coronavirus — our very first article on the topic. At the time, her district in Bergen County, New Jersey, was ahead of most, but within days, school systems across the country, like toppling dominoes, rapidly followed suit.  READ MORE

School will be different when students return

When schools reopen this fall — if they reopen this fall — students and teachers will not be returning to the classroom learning environments they left behind in March, when school districts across the country shuttered for more than 55 million children. Some of the most obvious differences will be the increased sanitization of classrooms and buses, teachers and children wearing masks and other personal protective gear, frequent temperature checks and hand-washing and new rules that allow for as much social distancing as possible.  READ MORE

Parents can be co-teaching partners

Elizabeth Stein, a contributor for MiddleWeb, writes: “Did you ever stop to really think about parents as your co-teaching partners? It’s far from a new idea. See this Educational Leadership article from ASCD that dates back to March 2015 as an example. We are all living the reality of not just being ‘Two Teachers in the Room.’ Rather, we are all teachers beyond the room — reaching into many rooms. The meaning of this reality is tremendously variant as we all experience the COVID-19 pandemic in very personal ways.”  READ MORE

Remote learning continues, but students with disabilities are still falling behind

Samantha Wagensommer expected to finish her last semester on Stockton University’s campus and walk in her graduation ceremony this month. Instead, she’s been back home in Manahawkin since March, finishing her degree remotely and taking on the role of helping teach her little brother Dean, an 18-year-old who has autism spectrum disorder. Dean normally goes to school nearly year-round at Southern Regional High School.  READ MORE