As there is uncertainty as to what the next school year will bring, communities are coming together to form learning pods, where small groups of families work together to create an environment that meets children’s educational and social needs, while providing protection from COVID-19 and staying away from large groups.
Dr. Katy Bulkley, Professor and Chairperson of the Educational Leadership Department, commented on how these learning pods may ultimately fall short. She stated, “Even in more diverse school settings and districts, my hunch is that you’ll have increasing segregation in those pods. It’s hard to envision a scenario in which that does not increase inequities, rather than even holding steady.”
Additionally, Dr. Bulkley said that she hopes to see school districts getting involved — they could lead pod formation and help guide where these groups ultimately assemble as a way to help overcome the discriminatory effects of self-selection as well as provide some regulatory oversight.