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Now in its third season, the series brings experts around the table to discuss timely educational issues affecting Southwest Virginians. From safely opening schools and academic logistics, to culture, climate and curriculum, the experts share their insights and inform viewers on topics they care about. We are a “Community of Learners” supporting each other, and we remain committed to helping each student reach their full potential.

MONDAYS @ 7pm on Blue Ridge PBS & streaming on ECHO

This Season:

  • October 4  - What it takes to learn during a pandemic:  Our guest this week is Dr. James Lane, State Superintendent of Public Instruction. We’ll discuss efforts to help students catch up after enduring a year of emergency teaching and how the pandemic has in some ways improved the capabilities of schools in the Commonwealth.
  • October 11 - What it takes to survive middle school: Our guest is Dina Imbriani of Mountain Shepherd Adventure School, who will talk about how the seven priorities of backcountry survival can help middle school and high school girls navigate the difficult terrain of the teenage years.
  • October 18 -  What it takes to bridge the technology gap: Our guest is Douglas Pitzer, Director of Career Advancement in Advanced Technology an STEM+ at Commonwealth Learning Systems at the Roanoke Higher Ed Center.
  • October 25 - What it Takes to Preserve and Promote Mountain Culture with Dylan Locke of the Floyd Country Store, Handmade School, and County Sales Records. 
  • November 1 -   What it Takes to Collaborate in Crisis: Guests Rachel Hopkins of the Science Museum of Western Virginia and April Corbett of Center in the Square join host Tom Landon to discuss how the organizations teamed with community partners to serve students and families during the pandemic.
  • November 8 - What it Takes to Serve Kids After School: Guests Michelle Davis and Rebekah Meadows of the Boys and Girls Clubs of Southwest Virginia share how the organization is expanding to meet the needs of students and families in Roanoke, Franklin County, and Montgomery County with afterschool programs and services.
  • November 15 - What it Takes to Meet the Needs of a Community: Guest Abby Verdillo Hamilton, CEO of United Way of the Roanoke Valley, joins host Tom Landon to talk about the organization's goals and how they are collaborating with partners to achieve them.
  • November 22 - What it Takes to Really Belong: Guest Amanda Stanley of Depaul Community Resources joins Tom Landon to share how DePaul is working to help kids find forever homes, which is often the key to child development and helping kids achieve their potential.