The Georgia Partnership has assumed a lead in coordinating a collaborative response to the unprecedented challenges and opportunities COVID-19 presents to local and state leaders in addressing the needs of students and their families. Having laid a solid foundation in addressing issues of equitable access to quality education for all Georgia’s students, particularly so in recent years, the Georgia Partnership is now building upon and accelerating those efforts to combat equity issues that have been exacerbated by the enormous challenges brought about by COVID-19.
In addition to meeting the immediate challenges presented by the COVID-19, to ensure long term recovery, Georgia must understand what systems are and can be in place to respond to short-term and long-term disruptions and how those systems are financially supported. The Georgia Partnership is working to use this time/opportunity to reform the systemic structures, infrastructures, policies, practices and funding deficits that have consistently left vulnerable children and communities behind.
In response to COVID-19, the Georgia Partnership is leading the EdQuest Georgia Coalition in examining the priority policy and programmatic issues that need to be addressed for our state’s equitable road to recovery. The foundation the Georgia Partnership laid over several years in leading the Coalition has allowed it to pivot seamlessly/quickly to spearhead these recovery efforts.
The Georgia Partnership’s Rural Learning Networks (RLNs) are providing valuable insight into the impact of COVID-19 on local systems. Having firmly established RLNs over the last several years has allowed the Georgia Partnership to seamlessly/quickly pivot to play a key role in COVID-19 recovery efforts, both locally and on a state level.
In the Georgia Partnership's latest 2020 Top Ten Issues to Watch report, we put a spotlight on many of the issues that are now closely associated with COVID-19, particulary the inequities within Georgia’s education system. Looking ahead to the 2021 Top Ten report, we will be diving more deeply into issues of equity and how we can overcome them.
The Georgia Partnership recently selected its 13th cohort of the Georgia Education Policy Fellowship Program. The 20 Fellows, who represent a diversity of sectors, will commit nine months to an intensive professional development experience concentrated on three program strands: public policy, leadership, and professional networking. They will attend monthly colloquium to deepen their knowledge of education policy. Given the looming uncertainty within our public schools due to COVID-19 and the increasing need for strong leaders supporting education, we've tailored the program to provide an even more powerful and relevant leadership development experience for the Fellows that will build their professional educational policy expertise and equip them to better serve Georgia.