COVID-19 Summer to Keep the Opportunity Doors Open for Education Companies

  • For companies that target teachers, this is a good time to do some contingency planning as well—to be ready to assist educators.

  • Educators will spend a good amount of time learning something new if it has a clear and measurable reward, The usual rewards include increasing learning outcomes and reducing stress.

  • Teachers are looking for more than just products and services to aid their online instruction.


As we inch toward summer, no one quite knows what’s going to happen during the 2020-2021 school year. Both the University of California and California State University school systems recently announced that their campuses likely will not reopen in the fall for in-person instruction. Schools that do open may be forced to shut again in the fall or early winter to contain another fast-spreading outbreak. This uncertainty is enough to cause an educator—a profession that depends on planning and preparation—to experience a wide range of unpleasant emotions. But educators are a tenacious and resourceful bunch. Instead of waiting for guidance from above, instructors will be doing a detailed COVID-19 overhaul of their curricula when they do all their yearly planning and strategizing: during summer break.


Summer is a very important time for teachers. It’s really the only time they have to evaluate and revise their lesson plans and teaching methodologies. And since they get to do all that work at home, without the distraction of students and grading, and perhaps while wearing shorts, they do it all unpaid. For companies that target teachers, this is a good time to do some contingency planning as well—to be ready to assist educators no matter what scenario they find themselves in come fall. Erin Borgstrom, a science teacher at New West Charter High School in Los Angeles, has already started making plans for new curricula she’ll finish up over the summer



Learn more: THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC EMPOWERS DISTANCE EDUCATION ON THE GLOBAL LEVEL .
 

“ To reach the most educators, provide a range of support features, including clearly written instructions, webinars, instructional videos and live customer assistance."

~ Educator say


Like Erin, teachers want to be prepared next time they’re told to “go remote.” They want their online instruction to be more seamless, equitable, engaging and effective. They want it to be a better experience overall, and they’re looking for help. Companies that provide this assistance to teachers directly will be rich in prospects. Because, with the economy in turmoil, many teachers aren’t relying on their districts to provide funding for what they need. There’s a good chance there won’t be any funding available.

“Our new Google Meet and Chat monitoring functionality will give IT teams more insight into school meetings to better protect sensitive data, secure remote learning, keep meetings private and students safe.”


According to the 2014 Teachers Know Best survey by the Gates Foundation, teachers find out about products largely through word-of-mouth. But with teachers’ lounges out of operation and professional development focused on getting through the current school year, opportunities for in-person recommendations are limited. This means that teachers are largely relying on social media for inspiration. Your marketing shouldn’t be limited to social media (teachers still seek information through online searches and publications), but it should be highly shareable. Educators will spend a good amount of time learning something new if it has a clear and measurable reward. The usual rewards include increasing learning outcomes and reducing stress.


This is even greater now as teachers attempt to master authoring and conferencing tools, learning platforms and other technology that may be completely novel, foreign and for many, unwanted. If you can truly save instructors time and reduce stress by minimizing the learning curve or if you can help their students meet learning objectives, they’ll make the investment. Remember, teachers are doing all this work over the summer without pay. So, no matter how much they love what they do, and no matter how much your product or service will help them over the school year, they will not spend weeks of their limited time attempting to figure out an overly complicated product or service. If you want to reach teachers, make it easy.


Learn more: HOW THE REMOTE LEARNING PIVOT COULD SHAPE HIGHER ED IT .
 

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