The past year has been ripe with narratives about how students are struggling socially and emotionally, experiencing trauma, and falling behind academically. This session will challenge that narrative, and ask advocates to maintain an asset-based lens about students, recognizing their resilience and individual growth throughout the challenges they’ve faced. We will discuss specific policies and practices that must be in place to support the holistic needs of students and ensure schools do not do further harm as students return to in-person learning. This session will ask advocates to set aside deficit-laden agendas for school reopening that can cause further harm, and instead push for equitable learning environments that foster the strengths and assets students have built over the past year, while also providing the supports students need given the challenges they face.