10 steps to a better one-to-one experience
Planning is a big part of any initiative. Here’s how to plan a better one-to-one program The word is out. We hear every day from teachers who tell us their school will be going one-to-one this school year. Their classrooms will be equipped with a laptop or tablet for every student, and in many cases,
New resource offers 9 student data privacy best practices
Technology, family involvement and communication are key to executing school data privacy best practices, according to a new white paper from communication service provider West Corporation.
“School and Student Data Privacy: Nine Considerations for Community Engagement” offers an overview of nine best practices that can help school leaders navigate student data privacy policies and frameworks.
“Data-enabled technology use in schools has increased exponentially over the past decade, helping inform teacher instruction and enterprise decisions and making student privacy and data security more important than ever,” said white paper author Mark Schneiderman, West's Education group vice president of government affairs and former senior director of education policy at SIIA. “Maintaining student confidentiality requires a comprehensive set of school data policies and practices. It is crucial that everyone in the school community—educators, parents and students—understands the importance of data security and privacy.”
West’s Education group will host a webinar for school and district leaders addressing school and student data privacy Thursday, June 9, at 11 a.m. Pacific /2 p.m. Eastern. Schneiderman will lead the webinar and will be joined by Linnette Attai, an expert on privacy compliance and best practices as president of PlayWell, LLC and project director for the Consortium for School Network’s (CoSN) Privacy Initiative.
All webinar attendees will receive the “School and Student Data Privacy: Nine Considerations for Community Engagement” white paper, and it will be available for download on the SchoolMessenger website following the webinar.
To register for the webinar, visit http://bitly.com/DataPrivacyJune2016.
The white paper and webinar are not intended to and do not provide legal advice. School leaders should consult legal counsel to best understand their district’s risks and options under the law.
Miami-Dade using itlearning LMS in pilot
The nation’s fourth largest public school district, Miami-Dade County Public Schools (MDCPS), is running a semester-long pilot program utilizing the itslearning learning management system (LMS) to select, deliver and manage the instructional components for secondary level social science courses in 10 schools.
Designed specifically for the K-12 sector, itslearning is a cloud-based LMS that enables teachers to engage today’s “digitally wired” students anytime, anywhere and on any device. The MDCPS pilot will run through May, after which teacher feedback and input will be solicited.
In 2014 Miami-Dade Public Schools launched the “Digital Convergence” initiative, a program to provide wireless access in all its schools and put digital learning devices such as laptops and tablets in the hands of all students. According to Brazofsky, the itslearning pilot is a great opportunity for teachers to maximize the potential of the initiative through the use of an LMS.
“Because the itslearning platform consolidates and automates the curriculum management process, teachers participating in the pilot are able to infuse digital tools and content into their lessons,” said Brazofsky. “Thus far the teachers report that the system has helped facilitate communication, collaboration and interaction between them and students. They also say that by using digital tools they’re so familiar with, students are far more engaged in their learning.”
“The streaming videos is a favorite for me and the students. I don’t have to spend time searching online for proper educational videos because the itslearning system has already vetted them and matched them to our standards. I simply add a link to the video on the assignment and students can watch it from home,” said Jaela Vazquez, a world history and geography teacher at Coral Reef Senior High School. “The Bulletin Board is another incredible tool. I write out agenda on it and attach all the PowerPoints and handouts for students who were absent, or for students to reference later when they’re studying.”
Teachers participating in the pilot receive personalized professional development and training from itslearning, including formal face-to-face biweekly digital meetings, and on-demand tutorials that support digital and blended learning via the itslearning platform.
The high schools selected to participate in the pilot are: Coral Gables, Coral Reef, Miami Southridge and Miami Southwest. The middle schools include: Ponce de Leon, Country Club, Herbert Ammons, and Jorge Mas Canosa. One school, Miami Arts Studio @ Zelda Glazer Middle School serves students in grades 6-12.
9 case studies reveal secrets of successful blended, online learning programs
Successful online and blended learning programs in a recent survey are those that prioritized better teacher-student relationships, used an online curriculum as a primary instructional source, and used a combination of in-person and virtual instructional support.
Over the past year, digital learning policy research and advisory firm Evergreen Education Group conducted in-depth analyses of nine schools that use online curriculum and platforms from Fuel Education (FuelEd) as the instructional foundation of their programs.
After observing and interviewing groups of students, faculty, staff, and school leadership at each of the nine schools, Evergreen Education Group identified certain key characteristics that make blended and online learning programs successful, including student relationships, online curriculum as the primary source of instruction, and a variety of instructional support.
Evergreen Education Group, in cooperation with FuelEd, has published an executive summary and nine full case studies, “Outcomes of Blended and Online Learning Programs in Schools Using Fuel Education Curriculum.” The report aims to further the understanding and potential benefits of blended and online learning programs among schools demonstrating strong academic results, and to highlight the commonalities in instructional models, practices, measurements of success, and outcomes.
Of the nine online or blended learning programs, five were whole school programs and four were credit recovery and remedial programs. While all differed in size, demographics, community types, location, and status of program development, the research team found important similarities. Each program reported improved student outcomes despite serving a broad spectrum of students–from failing and struggling students to mainstream and advanced students seeking a personalized educational experience. In addition, the programs used different measures of success, such as scores on year-end tests, graduation rates, and college attendance rates.
Teachers, administrators, and students attributed the success of their programs to several factors:
• Better relationships with students—All schools felt establishing deep and meaningful teacher-student relationships was an essential component to success and thus made it a priority. When teachers had a better understanding of both a student’s academic capability and his or her personal and family situations, they were better able to tailor their teaching and counseling activities to fit that student’s individual needs. Students agreed and felt that their teachers genuinely cared about them and would help them succeed.
3 ways to revamp lessons for the interactive learner
Educators who want to reach students who favor interactive communication know that integrating digital tools into their lesson plans can be an effective strategy. But to make a real difference, educators have to integrate technology in a meaningful way.