April 9, 2020 Message to Members
What Do You Need?
To those of you who find yourselves losing track of the days, you are not alone. We are used to the hallway hustle and bustle, the quick and easy passing conversations with colleagues, students and families, the daily schedule packed from a.m. to p.m. We are geared for fullness, and often nothing less. So: how are you doing in this new instructional environment? And, beyond that, what do you need?
These are the questions that are top of mind for our BCPVPA staff right now, when we consider the needs of our members. While we are not able to brainstorm together in our office, we are sharing our thoughts and ideas with each other via our ‘Brady Bunch’ squares on Zoom. On Tuesday this week, we also put the question to Chapter Presidents at the first of four weekly Town Hall sessions with the leaders and executive of your local associations. From that great conversation, we heard that a priority focus could be given to ways that staff members can be supported, and strategies for the support of vulnerable learners.
We understand that our members may be challenged right now for capacity, and we do not want to introduce new programming that you may not be able to access. But we do hope to create opportunities for you to engage with other members, or to access supportive content on your schedule. One idea is to present a content series similar to the webinar offered by Dr. Robyne Hanley-Dafoe, with a post-recording made available for our members. Another is to offer a weekly Zoom Coffee Chat, a drop-in with a loose agenda, primarily offering the opportunity to connect in large or small groups. We recognize too that you may be hoping for more skill-based content that directly addresses the new challenges that you are experiencing.
We are pleased and gratified to share that Charles Ungerleider – Professor Emeritus of Education at UBC, and Managing Partner at Directions Evidence and Policy Research Group – has generously agreed to assist us with a member survey that is targeted to your current leadership context and eliciting how the BCPVPA can best support you. You will soon receive this very brief survey, and I encourage you to share your thoughts, and to let us know what your experience has been.
In any other year, I would be wishing you a happy Easter break with family and friends, end-to-end with walks, special meals and activities. Some of you will make that happen with virtual dining and social distance out in nature. Others may want to recapture some of the downtime you’d hoped for on Spring Break. Whatever your focus this weekend, I hope that you can find what you need.