Supporting Students, Educators and Learning Communities During COVID-19

As we all navigate the COVID-19 pandemic, its aftermath and the future of learning, one thing is clear: The future of learning needs to be learner-centered, flexible and resilient. It needs to meet the needs of each student. Read how KnowledgeWorks is working alongside our partners to create a more resilient, equitable future of learning.

Education policy that helps each student

We help advance policies that assist learning communities and states to meet the current uncertainties by building resiliency and flexibility into the system, while also advancing personalized, competency-based learning for each learner.


This guidance was created to help education policymakers and stakeholders take short- and long-term action to create resilient, equitable education systems.

Header for brief, reading "Evidence of Learning: How States are Rethinking Instructional Time and Attendance Policies in the COVID-19 Era"

COVID-19 allowed states to review existing policies, giving flexibility to think differently about seat time and redefining seat time all together. Learn how 10 states enacted policy changes to account for flexibilities around seat time.

An illustration of a teen in a graduation hat using an oversized phone held up against a row of books. An oversized pencil and regular-sized books are scattered.

Based off proposals to U.S. Department of Education, states continue to look to personalized, competency-based learning practices for more flexibility.

cover for Policy Solutions That Foster Competency-Based Learning at Education Commission of the States

How can schools improve the high school to post-secondary transition during a pandemic? ECS released six briefs to help conceptualize.

yellow school bus on the road near Monument Valley in the morning light

What have Arizona districts and state policymakers been doing to ensure success for all learners, even during a pandemic?

At dusk, Keeper of the Plains Indian in Wichita, Kansas. A steel sculpture by Blackbear Bosin that stands at the fork of the Arkansas River with the bridge in the foreground

How Kansas is building on years of supporting innovation in education policy during COVID-19.

Teacher supervising students who are taking a standardized achievement test

Lillian Pace explores the big questions federal policymakers must address for a more equitable, sustainable, resilient education landscape during COVID-19.

Kentucky education bill HB103 introduces charter schools, removes the Districts of Innovation Program and limits opportunities for statewide transformation.

Kentucky is taking a thoughtful approach to address the connection between seat-time and funding.

black girl with black hair, girl sitting on stack of books, laptop in her lap, in front of a monitor and next to a phone, both displaying graduation caps

States, such as Minnesota and Hawaii, have taken steps to strengthen human capital and infrastructure. How else can states ensure equitable education?

Enabling and supporting remote teaching and learning

Schools across the country closed their doors overnight, but that didn’t mean learning stopped. Read about how communities across the country adapted during quarantine with care at the core.

African American teacher and schoolgirl wearing protective face masks while discussing about test results on a class at the school.

Remembering what drives you as a teacher, your “why,” is critical for weathering tough times.

illustration of girl holding a laptop with icons swirling around her representing education and learning

What do we want for schools? We can take advantage of the opportunity to rethink teaching and learning by exploring standards, assessments and access.

Research confirms that most students tend to respond positively to these 10 core drivers of engagement. Find why they're important and how to apply them.

Research confirms that most students tend to respond positively to these 10 core drivers of engagement.

Two years in, these four districts share milestones reached in pioneering personalized, competency-based learning – and the distance learning challenges it helped them meet.

Brown-skinned, dark-haired little girl in plaid shirt and jeans reads a book while smiling

How are KnowledgeWorks learning communities providing access to books and encouraging a healthy relationship to reading during COVID-19?


We’re celebrating the KnowledgeWorks learning communities by sharing positive stories of incorporating social-emotional learning, positivity and community.

Yellow and black school bus parked

Take a look at recent success stories in education as education landscapes in schools, districts and states have shifted.

Futures thinking now

In our strategic foresight work, we’ve referenced the idea of preparing learners, educators and learning communities for an uncertain future. Never has this felt more relevant than now, which is why we’re sharing tools and leading conversations about potential futures of learning.

illustrated road, multi-colored like a game board, with pinpoints

Explore trends shifting the postsecondary landscape, look at COVID-19’s impacts and see future possibilities for postsecondary education.


What do we need to ask ourselves when we are forced to confront systemic issues and the tensions that they raise? Explore three major issues and their emerging tensions. We’ve rounded up the resources around “Education in the Balance.” 

An graduation cap icon glows above a tablet flat on a desk.

Engineering education researcher Kate Goodman shares her thoughts on foundational and emerging issues related to smart technologies in education in light of COVID-19.

a group of diverse adults wearing nametags sit in a meeting. The women in focus are enjoying what someone off-camera is saying.

Katie King introduces two tools for thinking about and collaborating to build education futures.

Educator and learners gathered around a science lab table conducting an experiment on a model wind turbine

What’s required of us to build a shared vision for education? A recent conversation from Philanthropy Forward provides some insight.

Teacher and children with face mask back at school after covid-19 quarantine and lockdown. Teacher and student focus on something off-camera.

How do futures thinking and systems change interact in envisioning the future of learning for everyone? Katherine Prince delves into the topic on her Tomorrow conversation.

People of varying skin color gathered closely, one speaking with hand gestures

Education is the place to dive in together with futurists’ tools to think about problems and solutions at a deeper, inclusive level to help enact change.

A clock that says Time for Change with hands almost to noon.

The urgent need for systems thinking and transformation cannot be understated right now.


Individuals from more than 20 countries joined us for a recent informal webinar exploring future tensions and uncertainties arising from COVID-19.

Foundations for Flourishing Futures will help leaders understand their own work in new ways and do their part to ensure that every child and family can flourish in the future.

In a webinar on “Stretched Social Fabric” from our Flourishing Futures publication, the panel examines its relevance today.