Community Message from Dean David Chard – 3/31/2020

Dear BU Wheelock Community,

As the response to the threat of COVID-19 unfolds here on campus, our thoughts are with our many students, alumni and community partners, faculty and staff, across Greater Boston, the nation, and the globe whose personal and professional lives have been so abruptly turned upside-down.

Our immediate goal has been to ensure continued support for our students and community partners. We have transitioned to remote learning and working, and are engaging with local and state officials as well as regional and national accreditation agencies to determine how we can proceed with important aspects of academic and professional support. This includes licensure and certification across many of our professional fields. Throughout these discussions, the health and safety of our community members takes precedence over all.

The disruption to the systems that support education and human development is profound. However, we are encouraged by those in our community who are channeling their knowledge, creativity, and compassion into new and innovative ways of adapting to our new reality. We’ve seen students and faculty collaborate to create an open library of educational material for Deaf children and parents;  a hub for remote teaching resources compiled by our language and literacy department; and personal advice for parents struggling to sort out what to do during long-term school closures. You can find more resources like these hosted here on our website.

The next few months will test our capacity for positive action in a time of uncertainty and change. It is essential that we all do what is necessary to stay healthy and safe, while taking care to help ensure our families, friends, and neighbors can do the same —especially those who may not have the means or ability to take necessary precautions or seek necessary care.

How we respond will go far in shaping the world that emerges following this challenge. Knowing that so many of our students, alumni and community partners, faculty and staff are poised to play a role in this response gives us hope that what will emerge is a world more committed than ever to the support of children, families, and their communities. Together, I am confident we can make this happen.

Stay well,

David

David J. Chard, Ph.D.

(he/him/his)

Dean ad interim and Professor