Aug 2, 2021 · 4 min read

Join CZI Partners at ASU-GSV for Discussions on Centering Student-Teacher Relationships

Education Leaders Discuss the Importance of a Trauma-informed Approach to the Upcoming School Year


Join Chan Zuckerberg Initiative (CZI) partners at the ASU-GSV Summit on August 9-11 for discussions about a hopeful vision for education in this country, and work they’re doing to advance that vision. The panel discussions will explore how to understand and support students in their individualized needs, especially as they return to school following an unprecedented year.

Here are details on the panels:

Seen and Understood: How Research-Backed Tools Can Help Educators Support Their Students

August 10 2:00pm PT

Location: Virtual

COVID-19 has upended the learning environment in unprecedented ways, while also creating opportunities for educators to leverage technology in new and exciting ways to help students feel seen, heard, and valued as part of a community. With thousands of tools to support teachers, it can be overwhelming to sort through the options. This session will include insights on the importance of using research-informed learning tools and information for educators to consider when selecting a tool for their classroom. 

  • Sandra Liu Huang, Head of Education and Vice President, Product at CZI (moderator)
  • Kathryn Procope, Head of Howard University Middle School of Mathematics & Science
  • Phyllis Lockett, Founder & CEO, LEAP Innovations 
  • Sean Talamas, Executive Director, Character Lab 


Injecting Science into the Art of Relationship Building

August 11 10:00am PT

Location: Coronado D – Level 4

Science proves that establishing strong positive relationships is perhaps the most important factor that determines student success. But far too often it’s an organic process, versus a methodical, prioritized, school-wide practice. How can strategy, technology and tools help educators and students co-create that human-to-human bond?

  • Andrew Calkins, Director, Next Gen Learning Challenges (moderator)
  • Scott Frauenheim, CEO, Distinctive Schools
  • Christina Theokas, Chief Applied Science Officer, Turnaround for Children
  • Samia Zaidi, Director of Educator Success, Gradient Learning
  • Jilliam Joe, VP of Learning Insights, LEAP Innovations


The Kids are Not Alright: The Future of Whole Child Care 

August 10 10:45am PT

Location: Coronado B – Level 4

Led by Robin Lake of the Center on Reinventing Public Education (CRPE), this panel’s focus upon the mental health of children AD promises to raise urgent questions and deliver timely solutions at the forefront of whole child care. At this critical moment in education, children’s voices must take center stage as schools partner with EdTech innovators to develop personalized and equitable education plans that put social-emotional learning first. How do schools balance attention to well-being, inclusivity, and academics? How are developments in tele-health at school and online transforming quality of care and increasing access? At the heart of the discussion is how to provide safe and supportive classrooms after a period of unprecedented disruption. The discussion promises to be historic as panelists examine and reimagine relationships between teachers, parents, and community stakeholders in caring for the whole child.

  • Robin Lake, Director, Center on Reinventing Public Education (moderator)
  • Brooke Stafford-Brizard, VP, Education Research to Practice, CZI
  • Devin Vodicka, CEO, Altitude Learning
  • Stephen Smith, CEO, Intellispark
  • Aaron Feuer, CEO & Co-Founder, Panorama Education
  • Josh Golomb, CEO, Hazel Health


Shifting From Sink or Swim to Unlocking Potential: Leveraging Learning Sciences for Adults

August 10 3:30pm PT

Location: Coronado A – Level 4

Much is written and discussed about ways to customize learning experiences around the whole child in grades PreK-12. But, we hear considerably less on this for adult learners. This panel will spotlight the importance of better understanding who adult learners are and what research says matters when addressing their neurodiversity.

  • Moderator: Michael Horn, Senior Strategist, Guild Education
  • Bror Saxberg, VP, Learning Sciences, CZI
  • Trisha Callella, Director of Product Partnerships, Digital Promise
  • Pedro Noguera, Dean, Rossier School of Education (USC)


Is Truly Adaptive Learning Here at Last?

August 9 3:30pm PT


Adaptive learning technologies revolutionize the educational experience to tailor learning to each student’s needs. With the speed of growth, how can companies achieve scale while maintaining a definitive individualized learning model? Allowing for remediation as well as acceleration, adaptive learning is proving to be just the technology for students arriving back in the classroom after undergoing such a range in quality of remote and hybrid learning experiences.

  • Bror Saxberg, VP, Learning Sciences, CZI (moderator)
  • Dan Wittich, Chief Commercial Officer, Riid
  • Simmy Ziv-El, Chief Business Development Officer, FineTune
  • Matt Leavy, Executive Vice President of Academic and Professional Learning, Wiley
  • Alina von Davier, Chief of Assessment, Duolingo



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

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