Should churches be considered essential businesses?

A debate is raging inside and outside of churches.

Demonstrators holding signs demanding their church to reopen, protest during a rally to re-open California and against Stay-At-Home directives on May 1, 2020 in San Diego, California.

Photo by Sandy Huffaker / AFP via Getty Images
  • Over 1,200 pastors in California claim they're opening their churches this week against state orders.
  • While church leaders demand independence from governmental oversight, 9,000 Catholic churches have received small business loans.
  • A number of re-opened churches shut back down after members and clergy became infected with the novel coronavirus.
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American education: It’s colleges, not college students, that are failing

Who is to blame for the U.S.'s dismal college graduation rate? "Radical" educator Dennis Littky has a hunch.

Percentage of college student dropouts by age at enrollment: 2-year and 4-year institutions

Sponsored by Charles Koch Foundation
  • COVID-19 has magnified the challenges that underserved communities face with regard to higher education, such as widening social inequality and sky-high tuition.
  • At College Unbound, where I am president, we get to know students individually to understand what motivates them, so they can build a curriculum based on goals they want to achieve.
  • My teaching mantra: Everything is permitted during COVID-19. Everything is permitted during COVID-19. Everything is permitted during COVID-19.
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Online symptom-checkers are wrong two-thirds of the time

Google is probably wrong about your health condition.

Photo Credit: Westend61 / Getty Images
  • Thirty-six different international mobile and internet-based symptom checkers gave a correct diagnosis as the top result only 36 percent of the time.
  • Web advice on when and where to seek healthcare treatment was correct 49 percent of the time.
  • It's been estimated that Google's health related searches approximate to 70,000 every minute.
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Foresight is 2020. Let’s talk about the future of learning.

When the COVID-19 crisis is over, how will education have changed? Will we have made the most of this moment?

  • Today is the launch of The Future of Learning, a series by Z-17 Collective in collaboration with Big Think.
  • Over the next several weeks, we will be releasing interviews and articles with education thought leaders, examining how the coronavirus era will forever change the way we teach and learn.
  • How can we future-proof our schools so that they better serve our children and our communities?
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Hyper-innovation: COVID-19 will forever change the way we teach kids

The institutional barriers that have often held creative teaching back are being knocked down by the coronavirus era.

Future of Learning
  • Long-held structures in the education system, like classroom confines and schedules, have held back innovation for a long time, says education leader Richard Culatta.
  • In the coronavirus era, we have been able to shake some of those rigid structures loose, making way for creativity and, ultimately, a more open mindset.
  • When creativity and technology combine, learning can become so much more than delivering content to a student. Culatta gives two stunning examples: one of a biotech class, and another involving a student discovering a star.
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Here’s what traveling could be like after COVID-19

We will travel again, but it will not be the same.

Thomas Lohnes/Getty Images
Coronavirus

COVID-19 has upended global travel and brought the world to a standstill.

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Higher ed wasn’t built for today’s student. Let’s not go back to business as usual.

If a crisis like this only comes once in a hundred years, so does this opportunity.

Image: Courtesy of PelotonU
Sponsored by Charles Koch Foundation
  • Across the US, only half of those who start college ever graduate—and that's before you disaggregate for race or class. That means 45 million Americans adults have tried college and not yet earned a degree.
  • The reason is simple: College wasn't built for today's student, a majority of whom are over the age of 24, are working 30+ hours per week, or have children.
  • PelotonU, a hybrid college in Austin, TX, has redesigned the college experience to ensure it works for all of today's students, especially in a pandemic. Its co-founder, Sarah Saxton-Frump, is urging other colleges not to go back to business as usual post-COVID-19.
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