Responding to the Coronavirus: What We Are Doing and Resources for Education Systems

Chiefs for Change

The rapid spread of the coronavirus presents unprecedented challenges in the United States and around the world. It is having profound effects on families, children, and communities. There is no blueprint for how to deal with a health crisis of this magnitude—and leaders of state and district education systems are on the front lines. They must determine how to protect the health of school communities, meet students’ basic needs, minimize disruptions, and provide academic instruction all while responding to breaking developments in real time. Supporting our chiefs, Future Chiefs, and other education leaders in this crucial moment is our top priority as an organization.

Since the end of February, we have been providing intensive supports, advising our members across the nation and connecting them with each other to share information, protocols, and strategies. Our team is also actively monitoring legislative developments as well as directives and recommendations from federal and state agencies.

This page is a curated list of resources from our members’ systems and other states and districts that we believe provides sound guidance for systems leaders in this challenging time. The page is updated regularly.


Resources from Federal Agencies and National Sources

U.S. Department of Education (USED)
This COVID-19 page includes updated tools, fact sheets, and guidance for schools and is organized by elementary and secondary schools as well as higher education institutions.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
This page includes CDC activities and initiatives supporting the COVID-19 response and the President’s plan for opening America up again.

Education Week
Education Week maintains a nationwide school closures map.

UNESCO is making regular updates to its international school closures map and has guidance for preparing the reopening of schools.

School Meal Finder
Education technology company Hoonuit worked with the Louisiana Department of Education to create the School Meal Finder website that can help families find local school meal distribution centers. Hoonuit is offering to do the same free of charge for other states and districts. Click here for more information.

Resources from States

Colorado Department of Education
This page includes 2020 graduation considerations; instructional guidance; guidance for schools and child care providers; information about talking to children about COVID-19; school meal guidance; and learning at home resources. The learning at home resources link contains remote learning resources, including teacher planning support links, and best practices for teachers and families.

Louisiana Department of Education
This page includes a link to Louisiana’s Strong Start 2020 planning guide, which addresses the unique circumstances school systems must consider for the upcoming school year and are structured by domain, priority, priority funding guidance, application questions, and resources. It also has links to at-home care and learning supports for families with young children, including guidance for early learning at home and a free subscription to Noggin Cares, Nickelodeon’s Early Learning service; technology guidance; guidance for grade-level promotion and course credit; guidance for current high school seniors and senior course credit and graduation; guidance on continuous education for students with disabilities direct services and family toolbox; a Family Support Toolbox; a Classroom Support Toolbox designed to support student learning at home; and COVID-19 Information and Resources. The COVID-19 Information and Resources page has information for schools and centers. The FAQ for Child Care Centers/Providers and the FAQ for K-12 schools are comprehensive and include information about special education services, distance learning/seat time, nutrition, assessment and accountability, and data systems.

Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education
This page includes a link for guidance on remote learning for English language learners and a Covid-19 webpage for special educators. The Covid-19 Webpage for Special Educators includes a family resource toolkit for families with children with disabilities; a series of zoom meeting presentations for special education directors; a remote learning plan for special education students; a parent letter explaining support and services during remote learning; a service documentation tracker; and a FAQ sheet for schools and districts regarding special education based on USED guidelines.

Mississippi Department of Education
This page includes regular updates on guidance for districts regarding digital learning, school closures, staff pay, special education, devices, course credit, etc. The Guidance for Districts document includes comprehensive information about online distance learning, including off-site learning opportunities. The digital learning guide provides guidance for executing the five stages of digital learning including a capacity assessment, digital learning guiding questions, supports, and a questionnaire and budget form.

Ohio Department of Education
This page includes detailed information about graduation requirements including student eligibility, credit flexibility, and grading guidance. It also includes a tipsheet to help educators adjust to new remote instruction formats; regular updates on COVID-19; and links to additional academic and social and emotional learning resources, including resources for virtual meet-ups for educators.

Rhode Island Department of Education
This page includes guidance on distance learning; resources for special education and bilingual learners; links to video wellness sessions for educators and families; and other education resources and updates on COVID-19.

Tennessee Department of Education
This page includes information about the state-wide strategy on COVID-19 and next steps for relief under the CARES ACT (released 4/6/2020); a memo with a three-phase path forward for special education (released May 7th); support, guidance, and updates for charter schools/CMOs and charter school LEA liaisons; school closure toolkit for districts, including guidance for special populations, high school programs, health and wellness, high school graduation, and academics; a STEAM Resource Hub for educators and students; and FAQs related to a range of important topics, including migratory students, English learner and immigrant students, a special education related FAQ, nutrition, educator preparation provider resources, school safety, information technology, finance and school funding, and instructional continuity. The page also contains federal waiver requests and waiver requests for districts including information related to, for example, required instructional days and the use of stockpiled days.

Texas Education Agency
This page includes links to TEA’s instructional continuity framework, guidance (including guidance for students with disabilities), and planning tool; resources for home learning, including At-Home Learning Schedules; closure guidance including graduation and end-of-year promotion ceremonies guidance; resources for academics including links to early childhood education guidance and grading guidance; and general support, including accountability FAQ and charter school FAQ.

Resources from Districts

Baltimore City Public Schools
This page includes links to a proposed 2021 district budget, guidance on senior transitions, learning packets, meal sites, and covid-19 health updates.

Boulder Valley School District
This page includes health and wellness resources (social, emotional, and mental health); meal sites; elementary home learning plans; secondary home learning plans; and an FAQ.

Broward County Public Schools
This page includes information about academics and a guide for supporting young learners.

Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools
This page includes support for gifted education, meal distribution information, remote student learning information, FAQs, and regular covid updates. CMS resources also include community update videos in English and Spanish; ELL resources; a robust instructional continuity plan with videos for implementation and plans for teaching and learning; and resources on educating and supporting exceptional children such as an EC continuity plan and recording, distance learning services call script, and FAQ related to IEP meetings, evaluations, and placement.

Chicago Public Schools
This page contains grading and promotion requirements, remote learning guidance for educators and parents; links to remote learning packets separated by grade in English and Spanish; FAQ for diverse learner supports and services; at-home health and wellness resources; district community updates; COVID-19 FAQ; and enrichment learning resources, which contain resource packets including independent projects and materials separated by grade (Pre K-8 and high school); digital resources; activities to stay active at home; and high school reading materials.

Clark County School District
This page contains district community updates, FAQ, and student learning opportunities, which contain grade-level resources.

Denver Public Schools
This page includes information on Trauma-Informed Resources for COVID 19, self-isolation, and remote work and learning; a remote learning plan; shareable daily lesson plans with suggested schedules by grade level (K-12); family resources, including a LearningMedia guide for their local PBS partnership; and FAQs that address ECE support and graduation questions.

District of Columbia Public Schools
This page includes information on 4th quarter grading, promotion, and graduation requirements, their instructional continuity plan, including distance learning resources broken out by each grade PK-12 and includes language acquisition, multiple content areas across elementary, middle, and high school, resources for families, and supports; meal sites; and regular updates.

Ector County Independent School District
This page includes a feedback loop structure to elicit feedback from students, families, and staff, special education procedures, and weekly lessons for distance learning broken out by Pre-K/elementary, Middle School, and High School lessons, meal sites, mental and emotional health support, and daily updates.

Everett Public Schools
This page includes learning engagement materials; information about child care (see March 18, 2020, update) and meals; an FAQ; and resources from the CDC and the state.

Guilford County Schools
This page includes budget recommendations for the 2020-2021 school year, grading guidance for all grade levels; important information about digital resources for teaching and learning and professional development; parent resources; social and emotional learning resources; school meal locations; and community resources available to families.The district also has an emergency preparation report.

Highline Public Schools
This page features news; information about distance learninghealthcare resources; and an FAQ. It also includes guidelines and a sample script for counselors providing support to 12th-grade students in an effort to ensure they stay on track to graduate.

Indianapolis Public Schools
This page contains links to mental health and home learning resources in addition to regular district updates.

Miami-Dade County Public Schools
This page contains updates and contact information for support, an updated instructional continuity plan, coronavirus prevention and contingency measures, and resources related to distance teaching and learning.

Phoenix Union High School District
This page includes updates on COVID-19; a supplemental learning and support plan; grading practices; and guidance for graduation for the 2020 class, which has recommendations from Arizona district superintendent

The School District of Palm Beach County
This page includes updates, distance learning resources, a meal and feeding plan, at-home learning resources, and a comprehensive instructional continuity support plan, including a parent & guardian guide and teacher guide to Google Classroom. The plan also provides suggested daily schedules for students and explains how to support continuous instruction, promote access for all students, and maintain connectedness to the community by leveraging digital devices and public broadcasting networks as well as suggested daily schedules for students. The page also includes a link to a page with resources to support students with exceptionalities, including a parent FAQ and educator and parent guidance for providing accommodations and remote learning.

The School District of Philadelphia
This page includes district FAQs and a link to online math, English language arts, science, and social studies Learning Guides for grades K–12. It also provides a list of 50 city-owned drop-in facilities.

San Antonio Public Schools
This page includes resources for seniors, a link to a digital learning playground, a community resource hub, and regular superintendent communications.

Tulsa Public Schools
This page contains links for distance learning, meal sites, and information on the district’s response to COVID-19. Their COVID-19 page includes regular district updates, wellness resources, and information for seniors.


About Chiefs for Change
Chiefs for Change is a nonprofit, bipartisan network of diverse state and district education chiefs dedicated to preparing all students for today’s world and tomorrow’s through deeply committed leadership. Chiefs for Change advocates for policies and practices that are making a difference today for students, and builds a pipeline of talented, diverse Future Chiefs ready to lead major school systems.