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UTSA experts hold panel to discuss future of K-12 education in San Antonio

‘Many believe this semester was lost completely,’ official says

SAN ANTONIO – The University of Texas at San Antonio held another panel with experts on Wednesday, this time discussing the future of K-12 education in San Antonio.

To view the live stream, which started at noon, click below. If there is not a livestream currently available, check back at a later time.

Six UTSA education experts took part in the third edition of Community Conversations, an interactive dialogue hosted by the university.

According to a press release, each educator had vast experience and research focus on important segments of education, which has been forced to undergo changes due to the impact of COVID-19.

Topics slated for discussion during the hour included:

  • The benefits and limits of distance learning
  • Addressing San Antonio’s digital divide
  • What does quality remote learning look like?
  • Long-term impact of a lost semester
  • How struggles with online learning can impact mental health for students and their families
  • The pandemic’s financial impact to public schools
  • Teacher preparation for new modes of learning
  • Implications for students and their postsecondary dreams

The event was free and open to the public, with those interested getting the opportunity to ask questions via chat, according to a press release.

“There are so many topics of discussion surrounding education since students were abruptly taken from the classroom to remote learning,” said Margo DelliCarpini, dean of the College of Education and Human Development and vice provost for strategic educational partnerships, who will be the panel moderator. “For example, many believe this semester was lost completely and teachers may need a new type of preparation to instruct students partially online and in the classroom. There are financial, mental health and economic issues to consider going forward. Though none of us knows exactly what our situation will look like in the fall, it is sure to be a thought-provoking discussion about changes on the horizon.”

The press release said other panelists include Michael Villarreal, director of the Urban Education Institute; Ann Marie Ryan, professor and chair of the Department of Interdisciplinary Learning and Teaching; Vanessa Sansone, assistant professor in the Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies; Heather Trepal, professor and graduate adviser of record in the Department of Counseling; and Lloyd Potter, professor and director of the Institute for Demographic and Socioeconomic Research.

COVID-19, the respiratory disease caused by the new virus, stands for coronavirus disease 2019. The disease first appeared in late 2019 in Wuhan, China, but spread around the world in early 2020, causing the World Health Organization to declare a pandemic in March.

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