Reflections on What it Means to "Remake" Learning

In March of 2020, we could not have imagined what lay ahead. A year marked by political unrest, grief, and social upheaval. For educators, a year that transformed the nature of our work. We were suddenly shut out from our physical spaces, isolated from our learners, and left wandering the wilderness of the unknown. The year found us juggling remote work and full-time caregiving, striving to keep ourselves and our loved ones safe, at intersections of multiple crises and rapidly evolving safety guidelines. Will the face of education in Chicago ever be the same?

We see the many ways in which teachers, mentors, and supporters of different forms of learning have adapted to new forms of engagement, have remade learning across Chicagoland—where learning can happen, what learning can encompass, why we teach and who we serve. So for 2021, we are hosting a hybrid Remake Learning Days CHI in light of all the challenges and successes of the past year. While acknowledging the ongoing process of healing from community trauma, we also celebrate our resilience. We will meet in the virtual learning spaces that have broadened our reach and changed our audiences. Those who can, will convene in person and soak in the natural wonders of Chicago Parks and Forest Preserves.

We thank all our participants for persisting, for teaching us, and learning with us. We look forward to the future, with the wisdom of our histories. Collectively, we can establish new systems of learning grounded in the diverse humanity of our youth—centered on equity, dignity, and justice.