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Professors discuss effect of COVID-19 on education

Lauren Leathers

May 29, 2020

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Stephanie Jones, a Josiah Meigs Distinguished Teaching Professor in the Mary Frances Early College of Education's department of educational theory and practice, and Hilary Hughes an associate professor in the same department and graduate coordinator, participated in UGA's Ask Me Anything series on Thursday, May 21.

The episode, titled Teaching and Learning in a time of the COVID-19 Crisis: Imagining What's Next, is part of a series of interactive online sessions between alumni and UGA faculty members from diverse academic disciplines. Experts from UGA discuss the effects of the pandemic on their area of expertise and provide participants the opportunity to ask questions.

Jones specializes in literacy, social class and poverty and their effects on education and social justice education. Hughes' areas of expertise include middle grades education, social justice teacher education and adolescence. Together, they codirect the Red Clay Writing Project, which helps K-12 students grow and develop as writers.

Facilitated by Denise Spangler, dean of the Mary Frances Early College of Education, Hughes and Jones discussed their thoughts on how Pre-K through 12th grade teaching has changed during COVID-19 and how it will continue to evolve in the future.

"If we think about social and emotional learning and we have a population of students who have been historically marginalized before COVID-19 as being behind, then bringing anyone back to school and telling them they are behind will add more trauma and a deficit-oriented perspective to how we construct," Hughes said. "For us, it's about taking the time to rethink the education system and changing the way we approach education so that we are not creating a gap for our historically marginalized students."

Watch the full Ask Me Anything Q&A on the UGA Alumni YouTube.