100 episodes

Class Dismissed Podcast is here to inspire educators through story and keep them up-to-date with the news that affects them directly.



Plus, we'll leave you with a bright idea in education that you can apply in your community.



So relax and enjoy the lighthearted 30-45 minute episodes, while doing chores around the house or commuting to work.



Regular Co-Hosts include Principal - Kristina Pollard, Teacher- Lissa Pruett, Education Data Expert-Russ Davis, and Journalist- Nick Ortego



We would love to hear from you! If you have a suggestion for the show or want to write to say hello, email us at info@classdismissedpodcast.com or find us on Twitter @classdismiss

Class Dismissed SchoolStatus - The Podcast for Teachers

    • How To
    • 4.9 • 59 Ratings

Class Dismissed Podcast is here to inspire educators through story and keep them up-to-date with the news that affects them directly.



Plus, we'll leave you with a bright idea in education that you can apply in your community.



So relax and enjoy the lighthearted 30-45 minute episodes, while doing chores around the house or commuting to work.



Regular Co-Hosts include Principal - Kristina Pollard, Teacher- Lissa Pruett, Education Data Expert-Russ Davis, and Journalist- Nick Ortego



We would love to hear from you! If you have a suggestion for the show or want to write to say hello, email us at info@classdismissedpodcast.com or find us on Twitter @classdismiss

    Now more than ever, educators deserve wellness rooms for themselves

    Now more than ever, educators deserve wellness rooms for themselves

    We’ve seen wellness and mindfulness rooms for students, but this public school decided to create one for their teachers.







    The challenges educators are tackling during the COVID-19 pandemic are extraordinary. Juggling teaching in person with a mask while simultaneously educating other students in a virtual format is a remarkable task. But these achievements can take a toll on even our best educators, and schools can take small steps that can make a big difference for our teacher's mental health.







    For example, just last year, a school in New York designed a wellness room for teachers to decompress.







    Why make a wellness room for teachers? 







    For more than 30 years Debbi Rakowsky attended to the health and happiness of students. She served as the district social worker of the Three Village School District on Long Island, New York. However, over the past ten years, Rakowsky started to notice a shift amongst the staff.  Teachers and faculty would frequently come to her and vent about the stresses that are involved in education.







    “A lot that has to do with the complex parent and family needs and the high stake job demands,” says Rakowsky. “For me, when I started in the district school was a very safe place for people to go. And one of the things that happens a lot with teachers these days is they go through this rehearsed trauma. Where the first day of school we’re learning about what you do if an armed shooter comes into your school and how do you protect your students.”







    Rokowsky had dedicated her life to helping kids, but she wanted to do something for the adults that keep the school running. She began piloting a “Winter Wellness Series.” Rokowsky says the cold winter months in New York are difficult because you leave for school in the dark and you come home in the dark. So she took a faculty room and repurposed it by making it more “Zen” and she brought in practitioners every Wednesday.







    “And the staff just went wild for it,” says Rakowsky.







    After that, she began to think big. What if she could make a permanent place just for teachers and school staff to decompress? A place that was off-limits to students. Not a teacher’s lounge, but a place where staff could come in think and breath without distractions.







    “I’VE HAD PEOPLE WALK IN THEY LITERALLY CRY. THEY SAY I CAN’T BELIEVE THAT THIS IS IN OUR SCHOOL,” SAYS RAKOWSKY.















    Rakowsky wrote a proposal and handed off to administrators and she says they didn’t even blink. “They said let’s do this!”







    The district moved Rakowsky to the high school and they gave her a classroom that wasn’t in use. She applied for grants and they began to furnish the room.







    “When you walk into that room, you do not feel like you’re in a school,” says Rakowsky.







    There is a faux wood floor, window treatments, and the lights are different than the normal school lights. Rokowsky also added a water feature, massage chairs, and a meditation area.







    “I’ve had people walk in they literally cry. They say I can’t believe that this is in our school,” says Rakowsky.







    For Rakowsky and the staff, it’s more than a room. She also offers several programs for teachers, she offers workshops on managing anxiety, she has lunch and learns with practitioners, and they offer free short term counseling.







    To learn more about program listen to Episode 171 of the Class Dismissed on your favorite podcast app or a href...

    • 34 min
    Harvard Professor: Here's how to bring empathy and SEL into your classroom

    Harvard Professor: Here's how to bring empathy and SEL into your classroom

    In K-12 education, there's a strong push for STEM education. It's for good reason, math and science are important. But where should social-emotional learning rank? Psychiatrist Helen Riess, MD, believes we're in a society that's ill-equipped to talk about emotion and feelings. Riess thinks we need more than just information in this world to succeed. She believes we need to be taught how to have difficult conversations. We need to engage with people who are not like us.















    For Riess, teaching with empathy in the classroom is crucial. So important, she dedicated a chapter in her book just for teachers. Riess, a psychiatrist and Associate Professor of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School, authored "The Empathy Effect: Seven Neuroscience-Based Keys for Transforming the Way We Live, Love, Work, and Connect Across Differences."







    Her book, which is supported by research, answers whether or not empathy is an innate quality. Can it be taught? Or is it just something we're born with? She also offers tips on how we can develop into a more empathetic person.







    "Empathy is not one thing, says Riess. "It's actually a capacity to perceive and understand and know to some degree what experiences another person is experiencing." When Riess talks about empathy, she's speaking about capacity for perception.







    Empathy in the classroom







    For a student to be motivated, they need to see that the teacher recognizes them as unique individuals, says Riess. There's nothing more powerful than making meaningful eye contact with students. To show I see you and that you're not just looking at a blur of faces, says Riess.







    Riess suggests that educators should register each student's eye color in their mind. Don't say the eye color out loud, but take time to really look at a person's eyes' unique color. She says it will build a connection with the individual.







    She also suggests teachers should silently "name the affect" when working with students. Affect is a scientific term for emotion.







    There's a well-known phrase, "if you can name it, you can tame it," says Riess. "If you can name that somebody looks confused. You're probably going to be a little more conscious of trying to clear up confusion than if you just look at someone's face and don't try to name what emotion you're seeing."







    Riess also suggests that everyone should learn the ABC of empathy







    * Acknowledge - when you're in a difficult situation* Breathe - take a deep breath. Gives a pause from the trigger to the response.* Curiosity - as soon as we move to judgment there really is no open door left to show empathy. But if we say 'I'd like to understand why you did that.' Once the person is listened to and heard, you might get to a deeper level.







    To learn more from Riess, listen to Episode 170 of the Class Dismissed Podcast on your favorite podcast app or iTunes.







    All Rights Reserved. Class Dismissed Podcast 2017-2020.

    • 46 min
    How should history teachers' react to Trump's 'patriotic education' push?

    How should history teachers' react to Trump's 'patriotic education' push?

    In mid-September President, Donald Trump gave a speech blasting what he called "Left-Wing Indoctrination" in history classes. During the event at the National Archives, the president said "We must clear away the twisted web of lies in our schools and our classrooms, and teach our children the magnificent truth about our country." President Trump also highlighted the teaching of the 1619 Project and Critical Race Theory, saying that it is especially harmful to children of minority backgrounds who should be uplifted, not disparaged.







    The president's speech left social studies teachers with a lot to digest. So we at Class Dismissed asked educator and YouTube star Mr. Beat to help us unpack the president's vision for social studies education in the United States. Matt Beat uses his Youtube channel to make history and geography more engaging. He now how has over 240 thousand subscribers on YouTube all while continuing to teach high school social studies in Kansas.















    The presidents comments definantly caught Beat's attention and left him even a little bit confused. "I've been in the classroom now, this my twelfth year teaching, and most of what we still teach are just all the positive things the United States has contributed to the world," said Beat. "Students are not being taught to hate the United States."







    Beat points out that you can see some of the ironies of the president's comments when you look up the word "indoctrination." It's defined as the process of teaching a person or group to accept a set of beliefs uncritically. "That last word is key," says Beat.







    The whole purpose of common core standards is to push critical thinking. Teaching students to not just believe everything they're told is ultimately the goal of all educators. Pushing students to analyze sources and going to primary sources more and not relying on secondary sources, says Beat.







    To hear our full discussion with Mr. Beat, listen to Episode 169 of Class Dismissed on your favorite podcast app or iTunes.







    All Rights Reserved. Class Dismissed Podcast 2017-2020.

    • 30 min
    Six tips for effective remote math instruction

    Six tips for effective remote math instruction

    Adam Lavallee says a lot of math teachers are unsure as to how to start virtual learning. So the Pennsylvania teacher/learning design coach put together six ideas that can help educators get started.







    Lavallee's checklist has been featured in the Marshall Memo and in Episode 168 of Class Dismissed, Lavallee walks us through each of his ideas.







    Before we dive into his ideas, it's important to know that Lavallee says there is no "one size fits all" in the world of virtual learning. He considers his ideas a "strategy," which can zig and zag for each individual educators. "Teachers know their classrooms the best," he says. "They know their students, they know themselves, and to say here is the only solution wouldn't be honoring the experiences of each individual teacher."







    Lavallee's Six Shifts for Math Teachers Online







    * Content: Identify the essentials.* Delivery: Make strategic use of asynchronous and synchronous instruction. * Reframe HomeWork: Call it "Practice". * Feedback: Make feedback immediate, metacognitive, and collaborative. * Interaction: Organize strategic check-ins. * Assessment: A three-fold approach to summative assessment in math







    To hear a breakdown of each of Lavallee's shifts listen to Episode 168 of Class Dismissed on your favorite podcast app or iTunes. Or you can read more on Lavallee's website.







    All Rights Reserved. Class Dismissed Podcast 2017-2020.

    • 51 min
    Making the Case for the Liberal Arts

    Making the Case for the Liberal Arts

    Liberal Arts in Crisis?







    You don’t have to look hard to find news stories and books questioning the value of higher education. Bryan Caplan recently published “The Case Against Education – Why the Education System Is a Waste of Time and Money.”







    And on Fox News, Jon Stossel recently wrote: “What everyone’s afraid to say about college and jobs.”







    Often, the liberal arts are a prime target of such criticism. Naysayers question the potential job opportunities a liberal arts degree offers. And in all honesty, we’ve even made similar comments on the Class Dismissed Podcast.







    Making the case















    Our guest on Episode 167 of the Class Dismissed Podcast sees value in the liberal arts and humanities. Dr. Andrew (AJ) Ogilvie wrote New Frames for New Futures: Translators as Metaphor for the Value of a 21st Century Liberal Arts Education, a research paper that makes a strong case for a liberal arts degree. 







    Ogilvie argues that the current job market is in need of more liberal arts majors.







    “Some of the challenges that places like Google and Facebook are facing are human-centered challenges,” says Ogilvie. “On how people think about privacy, on how different groups of people think about what is moral, what is right and wrong.”







    Ogilvie says the kinds of knowledge many companies need right now is not necessarily the kind of education you’ll find in a textbook. He says that you need to be translating what your company does for your customers, clients, and stakeholders.







    Translators







    Ogilvie likes to look as those holding a liberal arts degree as “translators.” He says translators have a real feel for how language works. They understand how arranging words and concepts can be persuasive.







    For example, Ogilvie notes that taking history courses is not to just remember dates and places of significant events. He says that studying history is about understanding competing stories from the past.







    “The way we tell the story about the past serves a particular purpose in the future,” says Ogilvie.







    To hear our full interview with Ogilvie Listen to Episode 167 of the Class Dismissed Podcast on your favorite podcast app or iTunes.







    All Rights Reserved. Class Dismissed Podcast 2017-2020.

    • 40 min
    How a K-12 software company built contact tracing and quarantine reports into their existing software.

    How a K-12 software company built contact tracing and quarantine reports into their existing software.

    In much of the South, public school has been back in session for weeks. School admins are already implementing in-person, hybrid, and virtual learning while simultaneously navigating flareups of COVID-19 in their classrooms.







    When a student or faculty member tests positive for COVID everything pauses. It takes time and resources to determine who's been near the COVID positive patient and who now needs to quarantined for the next one to two weeks.







    Administrators can accomplish the task manually, by pulling schedules and going to each class and sorting through who sits next to who. Or they can work through a clunky SIS (Student Information Systems) interface and try to determine who may have been exposed. But SchoolStatus customers have a much more efficient tool. Over the past couple of months the K-12 software company built-in contact tracing and quarantine reports that can be generated with the click of a button.







    "We just want to give them a place to start," says SchoolStatus CEO Russ Davis. "The key is to get the students out of class as quickly as possible."







    SchoolStatus already works with school districts in a dozen states. Their software integrates with existing SIS and harnesses that data in a user-friendly way. They also have a robust communications tools that connect millions of teachers to parents each day.







    Davis says that adding a contact tracing and quarantine tools just felt like the right thing to do. Schools can now click a button and build a report that shows who has a class with a COVID-19 positive student. They can also click another button when a student needs to quarantine and that generates a report on when students should return to school.







    "Basically, it's a central clearinghouse to store this information to store this data. As opposed to keeping sensitive health data in a large Google spreadsheet," says Davis. "So not only do you have a place to find the students who should be quarantined but have a place to store their quarantine information."







    Davis says the information is also logged and recorded, so you can see who's looked at it and when.







    To hear our full conversation with Davis and learn more about how SchoolStatus is helping districts navigate COVID-19, listen to Episode 166 of Class Dismissed. You can listen to the latest episode of Class Dismissed on your favorite podcast app or iTunes.







    You can also learn more about the SchoolStatus contact tracing toolkit here.







    All Rights Reserved. Class Dismissed Podcast 2017-2020

    • 44 min

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5
59 Ratings

59 Ratings

NanaJHP ,

Excellent guests

The co-host segments are interesting and relevant and the guest interviews are first rate.

jjubran ,

Brings education topics to the forefront

Often our public education is only discussed when things go wrong. It's great to hear about the positive strides educators are making for our students.

Donny Phase ,

Tune in now

Acoustically sound, interesting information -- Class Dismissed gives a non-filler take on the modern day educator's problems and solutions. Educator or parent? Doesn't matter. Do yourself a favor and get informed.

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