AAIE World News

The Terrible Sweet Smell of Jasmine

By Dr. Andrew Torris, Director of the American Embassy School of New Delhi

Andrew, in his first year as AES director, is recovering from COVID-19, quarantined with the family cat, away from his family, yet still leading AES and what now appears to be an embassy authorized departure declaration.

The narrative is at once horrifying in scope, a tribute to unflinching perseverance and also requiring our concern and outreach. Andrew's writing speaks of crisis leadership on the line.

  • School Stories
Read More about The Terrible Sweet Smell of Jasmine
Our Kids Are Not Broken

Our kids have lost so much—family members, connections to friends and teachers, emotional well-being, and for many, financial stability at home. And, of course, they’ve lost some of their academic progress. The pressure to measure—and remediate—this “learning loss” is intense; many advocates for educational equity are rightly focused on getting students back on track.

But how will this growing narrative of loss affect our students, emotionally and academically. Research shows a direct connection between a student’s mindset and academic success.

Read the article by Ron Berger in The Atlantic

  • In the News
Read More about Our Kids Are Not Broken
Essential Elements of Safe K–12 School Operations for In-Person Learning

Summary of Recent Changes  (as of 19 March, 2021)

A review of the latest Safe School Operations guidelines from the CDC, including:

  • Revised physical distancing recommendations to reflect at least 3 feet between students in classrooms and provide clearer guidance when a greater distance (such as 6 feet) is recommended.

  • Clarified that ventilation is a component of strategies to clean and maintain healthy facilities.

  • Removed recommendation for physical barriers.

  • Clarified the role of community transmission levels in decision-making.

  • Added guidance on interventions when clusters occur.

  • In the News
Read More about Essential Elements of Safe K–12 School Operations for In-Person Learning
 Message from Myanmar:  A Paralyzing Crisis with No Clear End in Sight

The situation in Myanmar has quickly deteriorated since my last update written at the end of February.  At that time, response to the military coup that had taken place appeared in the form of massive peaceful protests, attracting literally millions of people, throughout the country. While the initial response to these protests was one of tolerance, this quickly changed when it appeared the demonstrations were building.  As a result, moving demonstrations began to appear, where people would gather to demonstrate, and then move to another site when the military showed up.

Read the update by Dr. Gregory A. Hedger, Director, The International School Yangon

  • School Stories
Read More about Message from Myanmar: A Paralyzing Crisis with No Clear End in Sight
What Will the Future of International Education Be? 5 Lessons in "Superforecasting"

Even in normal times, there is a lot of crystal-ball gazing around this point in the school year as we try to predict how many students will walk through our doors on the first day of next school year. - But these are not normal times.

So it appears that we are also leaning heavily on our predictive powers right now to look deeper into the future and catch a vision of how things will be several years from now. And not just in terms of student enrollment. The entire future of how our schools will function appears to be the subject of some considerable debate and not an insignificant amount of opinion and conjecture. 

Read the post by Dr. David Willows about how predicting the future could be a skill that can be cultivated.

  • School Stories
Read More about What Will the Future of International Education Be? 5 Lessons in "Superforecasting"
Why We Will Have Failed Them: How to Regain Faculty Trust

In response to the pandemic, some schools are furloughing teachers, freezing pay increases, reducing benefits, and in some cases cutting salaries. At the same time, schools are expecting older, more vulnerable teachers to feel safe returning to campus and/or living in dorms and assuming that all teachers will once again engage effectively and loyally in distance learning exclusively or in combination with classroom teaching. Teachers have voiced anxieties, fears, insecurities and a reduction of trust in boards and in their own leaders. We have heard these sentiments worldwide. 

In this article John Littleford looks at how we, as leaders, can tackle these issues.

 

  • In the News
Read More about Why We Will Have Failed Them: How to Regain Faculty Trust