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The Day the Earth Stood Still: COVID-19 is Demanding that We Rethink Education

In the famous 1951 science fiction classic, "The Day the Earth Stood Still," and in the 2008 remake with Keanu Reeves, the alien visitor named Klaatu warned the world community that the violence we perpetuated daily would lead to the extinction of the human race. We are now faced with a new alien visitor-- COVID-19 and it is challenging us to rethink how we operate as a local and global community.
Every sector of our society (financial, health and human services, education, and government) was not prepared for this crisis. The crisis also demonstrated how interdependent these sectors really were and are.
In education, we are scrambling to find solutions. Unfortunately, we are not following Albert Einstein's sage advice, "We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them." Education is falling back into the rut of recycled solutions such as "we need to amp up online learning." This online solution still has not addressed the underlying problem:  relevance. COVID-19 is a reminder that education is not used to supporting students and families in navigating the central questions and concerns of their lives. COVID-19 is the question and concern for every community-- especially communities of color.
Equity Lab is advancing an education model where students and families are supported in exploring the questions and problems that are relevant to their local and global community-- especially issues related to equity. Our hope is that the collective education community takes this opportunity to rethink how we can better ground learning in the questions, concerns, and aspirations of local communities.