The Delaware Campaign for Achievement Now launched in 2017 as a nonprofit education advocacy organization to empower, mobilize and collaborate with Delawareans to advocate for a high-quality education system. Due to the pandemic, its efforts have shifted online.
Delaware CAN has been able to leverage social media platforms to continue its mission. One way members are staying connected is through the Education Possible Facebook group, which was formed to involve Delawareans in discussions happening across the state. Delaware CAN Executive Director Daniel Walker said, “This group is about imagining, creating, and witnessing what is possible with our education system.”
Delaware CAN utilizes the platform to highlight great teaching and education innovation; share ideas and opportunities for learning at home; and connect families with resources, and individuals with volunteering opportunities in education. Walker said, “Our group welcomes everyone who is interested in transforming the education system into one that serves all students. We ask the public to join and share information they see around innovative approaches to learning and education. We inspire the group to engage in conversations with each other around best practices and ask the questions they have.”
Group members have spoken to media outlets about their experiences and opinions on COVID-19 and education. Some participated in weekly people's task force calls to monitor distance learning implementation and share on-the-ground experiences. These conversations led to the creation of a distance learning comparison tool that looked at district and charter plans.
The group recently posted important questions that parents should ask teachers so they can be confident about their students’ virtual learning environment. The group is constantly sharing ideas for online schooling, different educational accomplishments in overcoming the virtual challenges, and new online events like the Books, Balls, and Blocks workshop which encourages parents and kids to get on Zoom and engage in activities such as reading and play.
Walker said, “Parents, students, and educators are making their voices heard. Across Delaware, we see the need for a new approach to learning and culture. The group has also been involved in amplifying the voices of students to create more racially just schools. This work is important as we grapple with the weight of recent events.”
For more information, follow Delaware CAN on Facebook or join its Education Possible Facebook group.