Friday, October 20, 2017

Whatever it Takes

I recently had an opportunity to participate in the American Association of School Administrators (AASA) Summit on Personalized Learning in Charlotte, North Carolina with several superintendents throughout the United States. A portion of this Summit was spent in the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Public School District (CMS) seeing personalized learning in elementary schools. This experience was exceptional and has provided further insight into our district's journey of personalization.

Students in these elementary schools completed learning pathways or playlists for academic development in their securing of knowledge. On several occasions I asked students what they were doing and they were able to clearly articulate their learning goal. In essence, these students possessed complete ownership of their learning and were able to progress at their own pace. The students were completely committed to the learning process.

At JWP we are committed to shifting our traditional school system to a modern school in which student needs, learning styles, and skills are well understood by the students themselves and by their teachers. In addition we are creating learner portfolios that document our students' educational experiences and will serve as a conferencing tool between students, teachers, and parents that build mutually respectful and strong relationships. Lastly, we are striving to create an environment  in which high learner engagement occurs as a result of personal connections and ownership of their learning. 

As of today, we have made exceptional progress in multiple areas. Our teachers continue to work on the creation of "I can" statements created from the dissection of power standards. Students in the elementary school are utilizing SeeSaw to document their mastery of power standards and the high school students are using Google Sites. When these two items are completed, students will begin the process of self pacing their learning. 

The intended outcome of this transition is that no student is left behind and each is filled with a rich learning experience. As they say at CMS, we'll do "whatever it takes" to set our students up for success in the present and the future. We now have a vision to create this environment and we shall carry on!

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