5 things cautiously optimistic K-12 leaders say about the future

After absenteeism, technology challenges were the main concern for district leaders
By: | April 27, 2021
About 60% of K-12 leaders gave themselves a “B” grade for their handling of the COVID pandemic, according to a survey.About 60% of K-12 leaders gave themselves a “B” grade for their handling of the COVID pandemic, according to a survey.

Even though K-12 leaders expect recovery from COVID learning loss to take up to a year, a substantial number also feel cautiously optimistic about the future, a new survey has found.

Some 75% say they are in a better position to solve problems than ever before, according to the poll of more than 100 PreK-12 district leaders by ed-tech provider Cambium Learning Group.

The survey, contained in the“Education in 2021 + Beyond: How District Leaders Envision the New Normal” report, details challenges and opportunities educators have faced over the last year.

The leaders were asked about their views on equity, ed-tech adoption and online learning.


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“Education leaders stepped up in 2020 to make the transition to remote and hybrid learning as seamless as possible,” said John Campbell, CEO of Cambium Learning Group. “Although there were significant challenges—and more lie ahead—it’s clear that the pandemic showed educators what is possible when it comes to education technology.”

The survey’s key findings include:

  • After absenteeism, technology challenges were been the main concern for district leaders (46%).
  • One-third cited managing ed-tech as the most difficult COVID-19 protocol (33 percent).
  • Leaders cited student (49%) and teacher (38%) access to ed-tech as the biggest challenges of a remote learning environment.
  • About 60% of leaders gave themselves a “B” grade for their handling of the COVID pandemic.
  • More than half of district leaders say recovering from learning loss will take six months to a year.