The heart. While science was never my favorite subject in school, one (seemingly) simple takeaway from my human anatomy and biology classes was this: we need our hearts. Simple, right? Or maybe not. The heart is a complex muscle comprised of veins, arteries, thousands of capillaries, valves, and tissues. The act of pumping blood throughout our bodies requires a synchronized process of contracting and expanding. Pushing and pulling. Carbon dioxide-laden blood is sucked into one side, circulated through the lungs for oxygenation, then routed back through the heart to be distributed to the body. A beautiful banality whose ordinariness masks its brilliance. Education is like that. A beat that has become so much a part of our lives that we don’t see it. Until something goes wrong. Like our hearts, we ignore the essential nature of learning until there is a blockage. A collapse. When the poisonous blood flows in, but there is no way to revitalize the stream because we’ve run out of oxygen. And then the entire system seizes. Arrests. Stops.
So, what is the point? That education is the same way. Education is a HEART matter. This past year has reminded us of this truth. We have been separated from one another and while the rudiments of “school” have continued, the HEART of learning is getting weaker and weaker. This is not an indictment against anyone in education. Dedicated teachers are working hard to reach students effectively. Committed school leaders are striving to stretch funds and resources to meet unprecedented needs. Parents are scrambling to support their children while dealing with work challenges and financial needs. Students are juggling feelings of loneliness and isolation while trying to focus on work and plan for an (even more) uncertain future. The mechanics are still operating, but there is a life and vitality that we are missing. The beats are getting fainter. The arteries are clogged. The system is in arrest, but it doesn’t have to be the end. As long as there is a pulse, we can revive the heart and start restoring
This is what we want to help do. We want to make this a place where we begin to heal the H.E.A.R.T. of education. We want to rejuvenate the hope, experience, aspirations, reach, and transfer for ALL stakeholders. We will be sharing ideas, strategies, and tools to start pumping life back into this necessary core of our society and we want to hear from you about your needs. So as we prepare to share, please post a response to the 1-question survey we’ve attached to this post. We will start with support for our parents and teachers, but we also want to hear from the entire community: principals, community and business leaders, students. Join us here every Monday in March for insights on
H – hope. We truly ARE in this together, let’s work on the HEART of the matter.