Back to School: More Than One Meaning
Tali Raviv, PhD
Midwest Regional Site Co-Director
Fresh school supplies. School forms. First day of school outfits. Laughter on the playground. Nervous Kindergarteners clinging to their caregivers. The hallmarks of the back-to-school season are more welcome than ever, and the COVID years reminded us how precious these rites of passage are for young people and for our communities.
However, they are only one side of the back-to-school story. On the other side are the children of Uvalde, TX returning to school after the horrific massacre. Migrant children bussed from Texas to Sanctuary Cities with no plans for their schooling. Students in Jackson, Mississippi unable to attend school due to lack of clean water.
More than ever, our schools must be prepared to nurture and support students, as well as the staff and educators that help them learn and thrive. The Department of Education has recognized the central role schools play in the healing of our nation. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona will launch the “Road to Success Back to School Bus Tour,” joined by First Lady Jill Biden and Second Gentleman Douglas Emhoff, to highlight the resilience of school communities, as well as the supports the federal government is providing to address post-pandemic learning loss, rising rates of youth mental health problems, teacher shortages, lack of access to post-secondary education, and longstanding inequities in educational attainment.
Our NCS3 center is proud to equip schools and districts with the tools they need to better implement Comprehensive School Mental Health Systems that are Trauma-Informed, Culturally-Responsive, Anti-Racist, and Equitable. Please join us!