McGill Experts Advise on Back-to-School


Published: 9Sep2020

Back-to-school is an exciting time, but this season came with uncertainties and anxieties like no other. With experts in mental health resilience, teacher preparation pedagogy, child development, and more, McGill’s Faculty of Education works in consultation with community partners to support a challenging re-entry to school during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Here are some of the highlights:

Dr. Mindy Carter (DISE) and Dr. Jeffery Derevensky (ECP) were both interviewed by The Gazette to comment on the “summer slide” phenomenon and the learning discrepancies between households that will require teachers to do more review with their students this fall. Carter was also quoted in Prevention Magazine, advising parents to celebrate their kids’ at-home educational activities and reminding them to not only support their children but their teacher as well.

Dr. Gigi Luk (ECP) was involved with the National Academy of Education (NAEd) in the U.S. with research exploring the effects of school disruption with regard to children's academic progress and social-emotional development and recently appeared as a panelist for the American National Academy of Education’s web-forum, “Reading Instruction in the COVID-19 Era". Drs. Joseph Levitan, Bronwen Low, and Lisa Starr (DISE) published an Op-Ed piece in The Gazette, advising educators on providing a positive and equitable learning environment should a second wave force elementary and high schools to close again.

Dr. Nancy Heath (Department of Educational and Counselling Psychology) and her Development and Intrapersonal Resilience (DAIR) Research Team developed a bilingual interactive e-flyer called “A Student’s Guide to Managing Stress During Difficult Times”. It explores techniques to calm one’s mind and body, providing tips to boost your wellness using yoga, practicing gratitude, and staying social among others.

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