Remote learning and more: A brave new world for schools
Perhaps no part of our lives is as routinized--taken for granted, even--as school. From K-12 to Higher Education; from students to families and staff; from bus stops and bell ringings to dining halls and final exams, school provides a rhythm to daily life.
A rhythm that’s being massively disrupted with ubiquitous school closures and remote instruction during the COVID-19 pandemic. Everyone who touches education is indeed entering a brave new world of experiences. A world of social distancing which challenges the very foundation of teaching and learning.
Schools are on the frontlines. In entirely uncharted territory, they’re springing into action to capture time-sensitive data from key stakeholders and using it to make remote teaching and learning as fruitful an experience as possible.
What We Are Seeing
As primary and secondary schools and higher education institutions around the world are being forced to close their physical doors, administrators scramble to plan for uncertain scenarios. In so doing they face incredibly difficult decisions on everything from how to administer tests and meals to canceling graduation ceremonies. We’ve been in close collaboration with schools as they course-correct through this fluid crisis to best meet the needs of their students, families and employees.
In K-12, 95% of schools provide daily school lunches (and in many cases, breakfasts) to over 30 million students, the majority of which are free or reduced. Equity is top of mind for system- and school-level leaders as they wrestle with issues such as:
- Addressing gaps, as close to real-time as possible, in school services ranging from food to mental health, and more
- Understanding the local digital divide: where access to devices and adequate internet connectivity is lacking
- Teaching and learning options that educators favor
- Remote work: Whether online academic activities should count (and tracking instructional time if so), and engaging all staff during this time
Higher-ed leaders are focused on understanding and acting on challenges including:
- Student travel history and plans
- Faculty receptivity to, and ability to deliver on, online instruction
- Being supportive of employees who are transitioning to working remotely
How We Can Help: Resources for Schools
With direct input from dozens of schools and informed by thousands of studies, Qualtrics has created several free XM solutions to help education institutions get critical information, fast.
These customizable solutions include a Remote Learning Pulse for K-12 and higher-ed—with a ‘Snapshot’ component to assess macro needs, and a ‘Check-In’ to quickly and regularly monitor experiences. Reports provide a one-stop source of truth which can be made public, such as in King Co., Washington.
As a companion to the Remote Work Pulse—a great starting point for all your staff (faculty included)—the Remote Educator Pulse is a teacher-specific resource that gives districts/schools and higher education institutions the ability to assess preferences and tailor distance teaching and learning experiences.
There are also several features of our platform we want to make sure education users know about for best-in-class experience management amidst crisis. Specifically:
|School or District Need||Qualtrics Tool||Support Resources|
|Communicate quickly with a range of stakeholders||Web/App feedback For pop-up on website messaging apps (FB)||Getting Started with Web Feedback|
|Always-on listening from parents/guardians and community members||Survey dissemination strategy
|Quickly and easily ingest open-ended feedback, such as on ‘Contact Us’ forms or buttons on web||TextiQ||TextiQ Functionality|
|Communicate with staff||Frontline feedback||Frontline Feedback|
|Closing the loop on questions/concerns||Ticketing||TextiQ for Ticketing|
|Student or faculty authentication||Single Sign On Support|
Staying Connected in a Brave New World
Adjusting to school sans walls will not be without hiccups.
But despite unprecedented challenges to health and learning time, we are reminded of the resilience of the next generation (just try to stop them from singing!). The baseline for moving forward—to staying connected in learning environments that separate us not by six feet, but by screens—is to understand the new experiences that students, families and educators are having. And then to take quick actions to improve those experiences.
All of these free resources are available at Qualtrics’ COVID-19 Here to Help portal.
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