Educational Equity & Coronavirus

The State of Michigan is taking important steps to protect the health and wellbeing of students and the general public during the coronavirus pandemic. While we hope that the need for school closures will not need to be extended, we also recognize the need to respond to continually evaluate community health needs and respond appropriately.

Addressing educational equity throughout the current crisis starts by recognizing that vulnerable students are at particular risk during this time of school closures. As a result, planning by the state, school districts, and schools should include specific steps to ensure that extended school closures do not exacerbate educational inequities and that all students receive the services and support they need.

As school leaders adjust emergency plans, we’ve identified 8 specific steps they should explore in order to promote instructional equity and preserve student well-being throughout this period of school closures.

Addressing Impacts of School Closure

The following resources provide information on the potential impacts of school closure and how they can be mitigated:

  • S. Department of Agriculture
    • Secretary Perdue Announces Proactive Flexibilities to Feed Children When Schools Close
    • Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) Program Guidance on Human Pandemic Response
  • Harvard EdCast: Schools, Families, and the Coronavirus
  • How to find free lunch for Michigan kids with schools shut down
  • Coronavirus prompts Newark and districts across the U.S. to reconsider perfect attendance goals
  • Closed schools could get OK to not give state tests amid coronavirus ed department says

Supporting Learning During School Closures

Michigan parents and educators must be adequately prepared to continue student learning during the time of school closure. The following resources allow for continued student learning:

Addressing Racism and Xenophobia

Michigan educators should be supported in preparing to address xenophobic and racist bullying. The following resources can help prepare for engaging with students around this topic:

State & Federal Guidance

Michigan school personnel and communities should be aware of the general and school-specific guidance released by national and state agencies:

  • State of Michigan
    • Michigan Coronavirus Website
    • Michigan Department of Education and Michigan Health and Human Services COVID-19 Updated Guidance Memorandum
  • S. Department of Education
    • COVID-19 (“Coronavirus”) Information and Resources for Schools and School Personnel
    • Office of Civil Rights Coronavirus Statement
    • Fact Sheet: Impact of COVID-19 on Assessments and Accountability under the Elementary and Secondary Education Act
  • Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)