While universities across the globe prepare for online or face-to-face learning during COVID-19, Stephanie Jones, a Josiah Meigs Distinguished Teaching Professor in the Mary Frances Early College of Education's department of educational theory and practice, says there is a lack of thought in the all-or-nothing approach to teaching.
Jones, who specializes in literacy, social class and poverty and their effects on education and social justice education, has long been interested in unconventional learning settings. Coffee shops, barber shops and other locations are all within her vision for community-based schooling. She says the downside of online learning is that many young people are not given the equal educational experience that face-to-face provides.
“The choices of “fully online” and “fully in-person” lack any possibility for nuance, for being responsive to local needs, and for taking seriously the importance of stable and relatively predictable learning environments that teachers and students need to feel safe and be productive,” Jones said.
In her essay, published in the Washington Post, Jones advocates for community-embedded learning under four conditions:
Jones is a former elementary school teacher and has worked in teacher education for 20 years. She codirects the Red Clay Writing Project, which helps K-12 students grow and develop as writers, with Hilary Hughes, an associate professor in the College.
Related links: Department of Educational Theory and Practice