California Educator

December/January 2021

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Page 8 of 67

A Wealth of Talent & Heart Y O U ' L L N O T I C E in "A Path to the Future" (page 30) that the photos show educators in class with students. Kids of all ages are laughing and smiling, their teachers right next to them. Of course, this was pre-COVID. The story, on help- ing students with chronic trauma, was reported and photographed before schools shut down in the spring. We held it so we could address the pandemic and its impact. But when a UCLA report on student homelessness came out this fall (page 35), we decided to pair the two, as homelessness is one of the "experiences" that make for chronic trauma (defined as trauma that i s rep etitive over tim e and includes neglect, abandonment, violence, abuse and bullying). B a c k t o t h e p h o t o s : It 's si m - ply w onder ful to see happy and en ga ged stud ents, and th e love and care given to them by their teachers. I can only imagine how you must miss this, even in current in-person, socially distanced class- rooms. I know students — and we parents — miss this terribly as well. A better 2021 is on the horizon, and in that spirit we bring you our annual Innovation Issue: Beacons of Hope (page 17). We showcase eight educators who not only are excellent teachers but connect beautifully with students during this pandemic with innovative instruc- tion and resources at hand. Jennifer Hines makes video lessons for her Deaf and hard of hearing students — as well as their parents, so Pre-pandemic, Alli McCart greets one of her students, many of whom suffer from chronic trauma. Story on page 30. parents can better communicate with their children. Davida Scott created a successful leadership program for her adult school students, many of whom cope with difficult circumstances. Keara Williams attributes her success in tracking down unresponsive students following school closures to the relationships she built with them — "ey know I'm coming from a place of love." Jose Gonzalez's middle schoolers assist their communities by building pandemic-related apps that advise, for example, how to stay healthy and where to find staples in short supply. Donna Woods' work teaching cybersecurity guides the next generation in protecting our net- works and data. Wajeha Chaudhry reaches young minds and promotes literacy by reading bedtime stories on her popular YouTube channel. Jennifer Escobar preser ves knowledge and heritage by recording oral histories. Don Dumas goes beyond textbooks to teach the truth about America's past. We know our 2020-21 innovators are but a few of the thousands of you in California making an enormous difference in students' lives. Flipping through this issue alone demonstrates our trove of teacher treasures, from the heroes in "A Path to the Future" to this year's California Teachers of the Year (page 55) to "A Backstage Pass to Life" (page 48), where Doug Green's journalism students learn real-world lessons. We are so grateful for the wealth of talent and heart you give to our children and youth. May the new year bring the health and healing we all need and deserve. ank you, educators. Katharine Fong E D I T O R I N C H I E F What About You? You spend your career helping students plan for their future. CTA wants to help you plan for yours — and nurture yourself right now. Read our story on taking care of you on page 51, and how to build a secure financial future on page 56. 7 D E C E M B E R 2 0 2 0 / J A N U A R Y 2 0 21 E D I T O R ' S N O T E

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