This week, the leadership and members of the National School Boards Association (NSBA) met with U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona in a virtual town hall meeting to discuss back-to-school challenges and the Education Department’s Return to School Roadmap.

“Secretary Cardona understands that the COVID-19 pandemic has thrust school board members into the spotlight like never before,” said Dr. Viola M. Garcia, President of NSBA. “Our members greatly appreciated the opportunity to speak with Secretary Cardona about the challenges of creating safe environments for students and educators as they return to school buildings this fall.”

“The Education Department’s Return to School Roadmap provides an excellent guide for school board members as they address what I see as three huge challenges facing the nation’s public schools and students,” said Chip Slaven, interim Executive Director and CEO of NSBA. “First, repairing the social, emotional, mental, and academic damage the pandemic has already inflicted on students. Second, addressing present challenges, including solving teacher shortages, helping students with disabilities, expanding internet access, and planning for a safe reopening this fall. And, third, preparing for the future by implementing lessons learned from the pandemic to transform schools to better prepare all students for success in the years ahead.”

“We appreciate Secretary Cardona’s continued support and advocacy for the tools and resources that schools and school districts need to not only safely return to school buildings this fall, but to ensure that students can recover from the damage inflicted by the pandemic and receive the education and support they need to succeed in the future and live productive and happy lives,” said Slaven.

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