The Newsletter

Daily Resource Highlight 3/01/2021

Posted by Bridge Alliance Education Fund on March 01, 2021

Below are the highlights and featured resources of this past week’s Daily* Resource.

2/23/2021 -  Getting Back to the Classroom: Easy Answer, Hard Questions

As COVID vaccines become more accessible, we are going to have to decide how and when to return to “normal.” We will also have to decide what parts of the old “normal” to bring into the new. 

One area where there’s widespread agreement is education. Everybody believes that a return to in-person learning is critical, but we’re having difficulties figuring out how to get from here to there. Philip K. Howard of Common Good argues that it’s safe to open schools as long as certain protocols are followed, and blames public sector unions for standing in the way. The unions, for their part, insist they want to get back to class, but that educator safety must be assured.

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Daily Resource Highlight - 2/22/2021

Posted by Bridge Alliance Education Fund on February 22, 2021

Below are the highlights and featured resources of this past week’s Daily* Resource.

2/17/2021 -  Black History Month with iCivics 

Long before I joined the Bridge Alliance staff, I was a big fan of iCivics. They are masters at turning civics lessons into fun games. And I don’t mean “fun for kids,” but just plain fun for anybody who likes to learn (I started playing after graduating from college). 

iCivics doesn’t just do games, though. They also have an impressive and enormously valuable database of lesson plans. There’s a reason that over 120,000 teachers use iCivics’ resources for their classes.

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Daily Resource Highlight 2/16/2021

Posted by Bridge Alliance Education Fund on February 16, 2021

Below are the highlights and featured resources of this past week’s Daily* Resource.

2/09/2021 -  Rebuilding Communities After COVID (A Guide)

At some point -- hopefully sooner rather than later -- American businesses and communities will be able to open up again without fearing a COVID outbreak. When that day comes, it will inevitably be bittersweet, with thousands of businesses remaining shuttered post-pandemic. For economically depressed communities, the impact of the lockdowns, stay-at-home orders, and rising death tolls will be even more stark.

We will have to rebuild, and it will be a long process. Fortunately, at least some of that work is already happening, and best practices are already being formed and implemented. For instance, Cities of Service has been working with five American cities to promote community-led Opportunity Zone development. Each city received a $25,000 grant, as well as technical assistance and full-time AmeriCorps VISTA members, to plan and build more equitable local economies with input from community members, business leaders, and funders.

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Daily Resource Highlight - 2/08/2021

Posted by Bridge Alliance Education Fund on February 08, 2021

Below are the highlights and featured resources of this past week’s Daily* Resource.

 

2/01/2021 -  Why It Is So D*mn Hard to Work Across the Aisle???

There are a lot of Americans who, like you, are very interested in bridging divides and understanding different perspectives. It’s why this Google Doc from 2018 about “Engaging Conservatives in the Bridge Building Movement” continues to see engagement today. It’s why BridgeUSA includes “party” in its definition of diversity. And it’s why “Bridging Ideological Divides” is by far the biggest category of organizations in the Bridge Alliance.

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Daily Resource Highlight 1/25/2021

Posted by Bridge Alliance Education Fund on January 25, 2021

Below are the highlights and featured resources of this past week’s Daily* Resource.

1/19/2021 -  Looking for something to do on Saturday? How about a chat?

This Saturday, hundreds of civic-minded people will meet for one-on-one and small group discussions about issues that matter to all Americans. These conversations will be facilitated by AllSides as part of their AllSides Talks program. If you would like to join, simply answer which Presidential candidate you preferred in 2020 (at the bottom of the page). AllSides will then ask you a few more questions. Once you have answered them, AllSides will attempt to match you with your political opposite for Saturday. 

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Daily Resource Highlight - 1/11/2021

Posted by Bridge Alliance Education Fund on January 19, 2021

Below are the highlights and featured resources of this past week’s Daily* Resource.

1/12/2020 -  What the Field has to say about the Capitol Hill insurrection

On Thursday, January 7th, the Bridge Alliance released a rare statement to condemn the anti-democratic attack on Congress by right-wing extremists. Today, we want to bring your attention to Bridge Alliance members’ statements on the events that transpired on Wednesday, January 6th.

In the days since the attack, we have gotten a better understanding of the insurrection, including how they were able to gain access to the Capitol and their violent intentions.

There was also the matter of lawmakers’ objections to certification of the Electoral College vote. While there have been objections to previous presidential election results, the sheer number of elected officials voting against certification was unprecedented.

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Daily Resource Highlight - 1/4/2021

Posted by Bridge Alliance Education Fund on January 11, 2021

Below are the highlights and featured resources of this past week’s Daily* Resource.

1/8/2020 -  Thank You, Ted, for Being a Friend. Will You Join Him in 2021?

Who’s Ted? Ted Wetzel is the newest member of the Friends of Bridge Program. As a Friend of Bridge, Ted will now receive special invitations and updates that were previously only sent to Bridge Alliance members and partners. Friends of Bridge are also invited to join special briefings, get access to professional development courses, and receive exclusive FOB merchandise.

Perhaps most importantly, though, we’re looking to our Friends for guidance. We want committed supporters to pitch us ideas and give their feedback on our latest programming. Last week, we asked you to tell us how you plan to promote healthy self-governance in 2021, and the response we got made it clear that you want to take an active role in the new year. The Friends of Bridge program is a great way to do just that.

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Daily Resource Highlight - 12/28/2020

Posted by Bridge Alliance Education Fund on January 04, 2021

Below are the highlights and featured resources of this past week’s Daily* Resource.

12/29/2020 -  Looking Ahead: Ranked Choice Voting or Approval Voting?

If you regularly read this newsletter, you know that we do not endorse individual candidates or reforms. We may tell you about a new reform idea and briefly touch on its merits, but we want you to decide for yourself what healthy self-governance looks like. This approach is driven in part by the diversity of the Bridge Alliance community, whose members sometimes advocate for conflicting reforms.

Take for instance the Center for Election Science and FairVote. CES advocates for Approval Voting (AV) and FairVote advocates for Ranked Choice Voting (RCV). The two approaches have several benefits in common (such as allowing voters to choose their favorite candidate(s) without worrying about the spoiler effect), but they differ in how they achieve those benefits. Therefore, reformers have an either/or choice between AV and RCV.

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Daily Resource Highlight - 12/21/2020

Posted by Bridge Alliance Education Fund on December 28, 2020

Below are the highlights and featured resources of this past week’s Daily* Resource.

12/22/2020 -  Looking Forward

2020 has been a trying year. We will tell you about Bridge Alliance members’ accomplishments in an upcoming newsletter, but as a general rule, we are going to take a cue from our friends at Civil Squared and look forward to 2021!

2021 is going to start out tough. There’s no magic wand that will be waved when the clock strikes midnight on New Year’s Eve. However, we have a better understanding of the problems that we have to confront as a nation, and the Bridge Alliance Education Fund will do everything in our power to educate you about the issues and present you with possible solutions.

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Daily Resource Highlight - 12/14/2020

Posted by Bridge Alliance Education Fund on December 21, 2020

Below are the highlights and featured resources of this past week’s Daily* Resource.

12/15/2020 -  TechCongress Continues to Help Congress Enter the 21st Century

This past spring, Congress faced an unprecedented challenge. For the first time ever, they had to figure out how to conduct business remotely to protect themselves from COVID-19. TechCongress has been helping Congress gradually move into the 21st century for years now, but the pandemic meant that Congress needed to go digital, and had to do so now. TechCongress met the challenge with its 2020 Congressional Digital Service Fellows (bottom of the page) -- a one-time program designed to keep Congress open. 

While those fellows will finish their service in February 2021, their impact will certainly be felt by TechCongress’ regularly scheduled 2021 Congressional Innovation Fellows. These remarkable men and women, who will be placed among the top tech decision makers in our government, will face circumstances and challenges far different than their predecessors. We are confident that they will meet those challenges and congratulate them on being chosen for this prestigious program.

On a separate note, we would like to give a shout out to Shannon Mannon of Living Room Conversations for her opinion piece in USA Today. I don’t want to give too much away, but Shannon realized she wasn’t practicing what she preached, and sought to correct that. Her journey will sound familiar to many of you

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