Natural Start COVID-19 Forums
Hundreds of nature-based education professionals have joined forums organized by the Natural Start Alliance over the last month. We've listened to administrators, owners, educators, and staff to find out what concerns the field is facing right now and discussed ideas for what our field needs to remain strong.
For as long as it's needed, we'll continue provide opportunities for nature-based professionals to connect, discuss concerns, share ideas, and figure out how we can move forward, together.
Below you'll find an overview of both upcoming and previous forums.
Similarly to the previous forums, upcoming forums will primarily be an opportunity to share, listen, and ask questions. We will limit the introduction in order to provide as much time as possible for your discussions.
COVID-19 Forum: Planning for Reopening
Date & Time TBD
As programs are either planning for reopening this summer or contemplating procedures for a reopening later, this is a forum for programs to discuss how plans are developing. To begin the forum, we'll hear from two nature-based preschool directors, Amanda McMickle of the Will Smith Zoo School in San Antonio, Texas, which reopened in mid-May, and Andrea Sambrook of Annette's Preschool in Hinesburg, Vermont, which has remained open to serve the children of essential workers throughout the pandemic.
Because the past forums focused on small group discussions that took place in breakout rooms, recordings of these forums are not available.
COVID-19 Forum: Distance Learning
- What platforms and approaches are you using?
- Are you offering offline resources?
- Are your distance programs intended for your families, members, etc., or are they available to anyone?
- Are you charging for online programs, or are they free?
- How are you managing privacy concerns?
- What's working well?
- What's not working?
COVID-19 Forum: Financial Considerations
- Are you still collecting tuition, are parents donating, have you had to refund tuition?
- Are teachers still being paid or have you been forced to move to furloughs, layoffs, etc.?
- Are you trying to access SBA loans, or other relief programs?
- Are you planning summer programming?
- Are you enrolling for fall?
- Have you had successes that others could learn from?
COVID-19 Forum: Summer Programming
- Are you moving ahead with in-person summer programming?
- Are you making changes? If so, what changes?
- Are you planning to offer summer programs online?
- If you don't offer summer programs, what are the financial implications?
Natural Start COVID-19 Forum: Administrators and Owners
Natural Start COVID-19 Forum: Teachers and Staff