Your guide to return to school with confidence...
The Back to School Playbook contains curated best practices for education leaders to implement during remote learning. Reach out if you have questions on how to manage the implementation of these practices.

Contributors to the Playbook

Register for an upcoming
playbook deep dive session
The Back to School Playbook webinar helped me focus my team's efforts
on best practices of what should be done now, leading up to, and
through school reopening.

Speaking with leaders across the country helped me to think about
circumstances that my team might not have considered.

In these unprecedented times, it's nice to know that I have a community
outside of my own four walls that shares my team's values when thinking
about how to return to school safely and effectively.

Emily Twyman
Principal at Brookside Charter Elementary School
As a leader, I am always looking for multiple perspectives on whatever challenge I may be facing. Participating in the Back to School Playbook webinar sessions allowed me to collaborate and network with school leaders across the country to have thoughtful conversations and start a plan for how to prepare for the fall.
Fatima Cooke
Principal at Sumner Math & Science Community Academy

Past PLAYBOOK deep dive sessions


Speakers: NextWave STEM

Join NextWaveSTEM, a Chicago-based startup, and other school and district leaders to talk about how to bring more STEM -- Science, Technology, Engineering, Math -- into today's classroom, whether it is remote, in-person, or hybrid. STEM education creates critical thinkers, increases science literacy, and enables the next generation of innovators, which is certainly what the world can use more of today. We will discuss leadership's role in STEM programming and how best to use existing and readily-available resources to enhance current STEM programming or build a STEM program from scratch. Wherever your district or school is in their STEM journey, NextWaveSTEM can help identify ways to get more STEM in front of more students to best prepare them for an ever-changing world.


Speakers: Consortium for Educational Change

Our school systems are deeply rooted in interconnected relationships. Any sustainable change requires collective action to ensure improvement is lasting. We are in a pivotal moment where significant change is required to meet the current demands. Organizational health must be part of the improvement journey. Come learn about research-based approaches to ensuring your system is ready to receive and maintain the change you are leading.


Speakers: MusicMath

During this session participants will learn to differentiate between emergency remote teaching and online learning. Participants will be exposed to the meaningful use of technology that will expand the possibilities on how to support student learning and engagement in a virtual setting.


Speakers: Sanarai

During this session, we will become more aware of the impact of the pandemic in our communities' mental health & wellness. We will learn actionable strategies to improve our stakeholders' and our own mental health & wellness from industry experts.

Closing the Critical Thinking Gap: The Equity Case for Making Rigorous

Speakers: ThinkLaw

Brilliance is distributed equally. But too often, opportunity is not. The dual pandemics of COVID-19 pandemic and racial justice has given us the strongest possible case for prioritizing critical thinking instruction, but we still treat critical thinking as a luxury good. Equity requires educators to remove the systemic barriers far too many students face to unleashing their critical thinking potential

Setting Transformational Goals and Driving to the Finish Line

Speakers: Educate LLC

Join Educate LLC and other school and district leaders to engage in an interactive session where you will be guided to turn your instructional priorities and vision into a set of transformational goals for your school. In the second part of the session, Educate will share the proven strategies from our 20 years of instructional technology coaching experience to help you fill in the journey from start to finish. We’ll wrap up with a reflection around what your biggest roadblock is and how you can overcome it to provide the learning experience your students deserve.

Using gamification to boost student engagement during remote learning

Speakers: Boddle

In this session, attendees can expect to learn about human-centered core drives and how and when to implement gamification techniques in the remote learning environment effectively to increase engagement and motivation.

Family Engagement in the Time of COVID

Speakers: designEDengagement

COVID-19 has transformed partnerships between families and educators from a "nice to have" to an "absolutely must-have." Schools need culturally relevant, innovative, effective tools and strategies for this new normal to improve relationships with families and engage them like never before. The new level of partnership must put students’ hopes and dreams at the center and equip families and educators to partner like never before.

Building student ownership through design thinking

Speakers: WhyMaker

During this session, participants will be exposed to design thinking and the role empathy plays in developing student ownership and authentic relationships.

Beyond Data: The role of research and its impact on education

Speakers: LEANLAB

During this session participants will understand the role of innovation in education, familiarize themselves with the different levels of research and evidence, and identify a problem of practice in the context of their school community.

Activating Social Innovation in Schools & Communities

Speakers: Cambio Labs

In this workshop, participants will be introduced to the practice of social innovation in education, understand how change-centered education can impact their schools and communities, and be equipped with tools and strategies for local implementation.

How to lead for anti-racist practices and healing justice in your school

Speakers: Project Restore Initiative

During this session, we will educate participants on the importance of healing-centered engagement strategies and the tools to support their work of creating a just and anti-racist school environment.

SEL rooted in the systematic cultivation of love

Speakers: Lovescaping

During this session, we will introduce a pioneering and unprecedented approach to building social-emotional learning skills through love-informed practices.

Returning to school with confidence

Speakers: Innovare

Innovare is releasing its Back to School Playbook to school leaders. During this session, participants will gain insights into strategies and actions of how to return to school effectively and with confidence, gain a first look at how their Inno™ application update will help them achieve their back to school planning goals, and be provided with additional research and supporting organizations to help implement their back to school plan.

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