Relationships are the foundation for learning. When students have teachers who get to know them as individuals and support their unique needs, they are more likely to feel connected to school and engaged in learning. For teachers and students alike, connection is an important part of their well-being.
Co-Founder and Co-CEO of the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative (CZI) Dr. Priscilla Chan joined Phyllis Lockett, CEO of LEAP Innovations, at the 2022 NewSchools Summit to discuss the power of teacher-student relationships and what we can do to help educators thrive in challenging times.
The event coincided with Teacher Appreciation Week, and Priscilla spoke about the role that educators played in her life, and how connection is essential for children.
Priscilla also spoke about CZI’s work to build solutions that equip teachers to support student well-being and academic learning together. Through grantmaking and the development of innovative technology tools, we make research-backed practices more accessible to teachers so that they can differentiate instruction and keep every student in their learning zone.
The past two years have taken a serious toll on teachers’ well-being. As Priscilla noted, teachers are exhausted, and many are considering leaving the profession.
That’s why CZI is investing more than $4 million to support teacher well-being. Priscilla explained that our grantees provide a range of professional learning, mentoring, and wellness practices designed to foster connection and community for teachers and encourage teacher retention. When teachers feel connected to their peers and have opportunities for professional growth, they are better able to support students’ academic achievement and well-being.
Connection is a critical part of well-being. Along helps teachers create authentic relationships with students through research-based questions designed to spark connection. Priscilla shared how CZI and Gradient Learning partnered to develop Along to help teachers bridge the connection gap.
About the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative
The Chan Zuckerberg Initiative was founded in 2015 to help solve some of society’s toughest challenges — from eradicating disease and improving education, to addressing the needs of our local communities. Our mission is to build a more inclusive, just, and healthy future for everyone. For more information, please visit chanzuckerberg.com.