A Back-To-School Toolkit For a Learner-Centered Culture

It’s back-to-school season, and we all know it’s important to get the school year started off right. We also know that it’s important to get the school culture right. So how can you best combine the energy and enthusiasm of back-to-school to get your community ready to sustain a learner-centered culture year-round?

KnowledgeWorks just released the Get Ready: Back-to-School Culture Toolkit to help educators and administrators do just that, sharing expertise on four areas schools should focus on:

The toolkit provides insights from current and former principals, superintendents and other district leaders who have supported their learning communities through big transformations. These EdLeaders discuss not only how to improve outcomes for learners today, but also the importance of thinking ahead to what needs to be done for today’s students to thrive in the future.

Here are a couple specific ways the report suggests engaging families:

  • Create more opportunities to engage families
    • Meet families where they are
    • Open doors and create transparency
    • Solicit and value their input
  • Build partnerships outside your schools
    • Schedule forums
    • Identify partners
    • Connect with districts

Five Goals

The report lays out five goals for a stronger school culture:

  1. Create a culture of transparency.
  2. Live your vision to support all learners.
  3. Empower students and teachers as leaders and decision makers.
  4. Operate with a growth mindset–for everyone.
  5. Celebrate growth!

Back-to-School Twitter Chat

Be sure to join educators from across the country as well as teaching and learning experts from KnowledgeWorks for the upcoming #B2SChat on August 17, 2017, at 7 p.m. EST to discuss the following back-to-school questions:

  1. It’s a new school year! What will you do this year to create a strong school and classroom culture?
  2. Student voice and choice are essential to personalized learning. What are ways you give them choices?
  3. Growth mindset for students gets a lot of air time. What about you – how do you (or will you!) display a growth mindset?
  4. How are you incorporating #socialemotionallearning into your classroom? Why is that important for your learners?
  5. How will you be celebrating student growth? Do the methods you use change based on the age of students?
  6. Learning communities extend beyond the walls of the classroom. How do you engage the #community in learning?

For more, see:

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Getting Smart Staff

The Getting Smart Staff believes in learning out loud and always being an advocate for things that we are excited about. As a result, we write a lot. Do you have a story we should cover? Email [email protected]

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