#70: Brentwood Union School District Superintendent Dana Eaton Provides Update

On this episode, I chat with Dana Eaton, Superintendent of the Brentwood Union School District who walks us through what has been going on in the District since the Shelter-in-Place began. We get into variety of topics from parents trying to teach, distance education, learning loss, the digital divide and what school could look like next year.

 Episode Overview:

  • 01:24 – We talk back over the past 6-weeks since starting in March, what is going through Dana Eaton’s head during Spring Break when this all breaks out. How it progressed so fast and trying to inform the community of the unknown based on information at the time.
  • 04:00 – Eaton talks coordination during this challenging time.
  • 04:57 – We talk about parents trying to parent and teach.  How teachers can keep a student’s attention but parents can’t keep the attention.
  • 07:17 – Advice to parents right now who may think they are not doing a “good job” during Distance Education.
  • 08:42 – Why reading Harry Potter on video? Eaton explains the backstory.
  • 10:35 – Importance in preventing “learning loss”
  • 15:02 – We talk about unsung heroes in this from IT people and lunch folks.  We talk about food services and providing food to students—97,000 meals provided to students.
  • 18:20 – What is Brentwood doing to help reduce the Digital Divide and number of laptops given out. Eaton says 30% of students who are living below the poverty level. So far, 2,000 chrome books have been handed out.
  • 23:35 – How is the District helping teachers through this transition? Plus, the dynamic of teachers and trying to get their own kids through Distance Education. Perhaps the term “glorified babysitter” will now go away.  We also talk briefly about how teacher negotiations are going and possible impacts of State Budget.
  • 31:36 – we discuss mental health right now of youth and providing emotional support.
  • 36:00 – How did the partnering with other school districts come about with the joint statement?
  • 39:30 – What is the school year going to look like next fall?
  • 45:17 – Eaton says registration is now open and will be launching online registration soon.
  • 46:39 – Final thoughts
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