Everybody in a village had a role to play in bringing up a child—and cherishing it—and in return that child would in due course feel responsible for everybody in that village. That is what makes life in society possible. We must love one another and help one another in our daily lives. That was the traditional African way and there was no substitute for it. None.” ― Alexander McCall Smith, The Full Cupboard of Life

There’s no easy solution for reopening schools.

My heart aches for educators because the burdens are many and heavy.

My heart aches for parents because the burdens are many and heavy.

We’re all overwhelmed with uncertainty. But with every obstacle comes opportunity. Enter employers. There’s a real chance for change and to #leadwithlove.

How will employers respond to this public health crisis? Will they adjust work schedules to fit the needs of parents? Will they offer remote opportunities?

Yes, it stands to be challenging and inconvenient. Quite frankly, it should be understood and accepted that most pandemics are challenging and inconvenient. It’s quite obvious we’re all wading through mud here and complaints rarely get us anywhere positive or productive.

In the return to school conversation there’s a lack of emphasis on the collective community solutions. Imagine if we rallied for one another. What might that look like?

I do not want to transfer the problems of schools onto the business world. But in the current conversation, schools are being contextualized as childcare. When schools reopen, schedules need to be adjusted for safety and social distancing. Therefore, our focus needs to be on supporting and sustaining plans for our children. Employers need to be involved in the equation. The answer is not within the depths of a district. It’s within and throughout every corner of our communities. The return to school and work is not simple. It also shouldn’t be singular. If it takes a village then the village needs to #leadwithlove.