Center for Faculty Innovation

Pandemic Parenting at JMU, Part 1 (Roundtable)

Thu, 6 Aug 2020 10:30 AM - 12:00 PM

Online Synchronous Roundtable

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Sign up at least one hour in advance so that the facilitator can follow-up with a conference link prior to the session. 

As universities and public schools confront the reality of a pandemic, faculty with children face another semester of teaching, homeschooling, and providing child care at the same time. Many feel that they are placed in an impossible situation: if they prioritize their children's health and mental well-being, they risk professional disadvantages and job losses; if they prioritize their professional productivity, they risk causing lasting damage to their children. Often, parents experience loneliness as they deal with these dilemmas in COVID-induced isolation. And many of these experiences are gendered: While it is predominantly women who experience professional setbacks due to family responsibilities, many men are benefiting from added productivity as a result of working from home. Academics who are caregivers, for example of elderly family members, have similar experiences as parents of children during the crisis.

This open roundtable conversation invites participants who are parents (or otherwise caregivers) to discuss these questions, review their experiences from the past months, build community, and look for ways to support each other. This is the first of two roundtable conversations. While this conversation is more focused on making connections and sharing strategies, the next roundtable will focus more on questions such as faculty rights, HR support, daycare, and other more institutional issues.


Faculty participants will make progress toward:

  • Creating community among academic parents;and
  • Identifying issues and strategies related to making it through the fall.

We want this program to be welcoming, accessible, and inclusive for all of our participants. Please reach out to us at or (568-4846) with any considerations (e.g., disability, wellness, cultural, dietary, etc.) you want us to know about.

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