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The following is an excerpt from an opinion piece by digiLEARN founder Gov. Bev Perdue, which is featured on Ed Surge. For the full piece, click here.

The lunches are packed, the supplies have been purchased, the classrooms are decorated, and we’re off and running on our third school year in the shadow of COVID-19.

Though teachers, parents, students and administrators are still navigating the day-to-day logistics of how to handle the contagious Delta variant, most students are back in a school building to learn—at least for the time being. Now, our collective focus is shifting from whether children will be in school in person to how to tackle learning loss and the “COVID-19 slide” now that they’re back. How badly have our students fallen behind? Have the gaps gotten biggerHow do we fix it?

I welcome the opportunity to change our education system to meet the needs of all children. But I caution against keeping the focus so squarely on COVID-19 and its impacts. Because the truth is while the pandemic may have exacerbated the existing issues within our education system, it certainly did not create them.

Read the full piece here.