Posts by Lisa Duty
Every year the WISE Awards recognize six cutting-edge projects that successfully address today’s educational challenges and demonstrate a strong positive impact on individuals and communities globally.
How blended learning in Rhode Island is proving the need for a new approach to educating, what means for other states and how its allowing students to learn their own pace, and pursue and develop their own interests and passions.
Blended learning requires a fundamental redesign of instructional and organizational models, transforming the core elements of teaching and learning--changing roles, structures, schedules, staffing, and core budgets.
Principal autonomy is essential: They are strictly accountable for school performance, and affording students and parents choices among specialized instructional models is a key component of Reynoldsburg's success. It is worth noting here that Ohio is a local control state, and that the district has a vital and active local teachers' union.
An explosion of innovation has been transforming how we think about learning, and how we organize talent and resources to support learning experiences. School as we once knew it has become ‘unbundled.’ While Ohio has been debating charter schools, vouchers, and e-schools for years, emerging digital and blended learning models have created additional opportunities and new paradigms for thinking about student choice, and with them some demands for navigating this new learning ecosystem.
Annually, for more than 45 years, the city of Reynoldsburg, Ohio has celebrated the Tomato Festival-- a nod to its heritage as the birthplace of the commercial tomato. This middle-America town also boasts one other claim to fame: A so-called "traditional" LEA, namely Reynoldsburg City Schools (RCS), which is poised to be a breakout star among serious implementers of thoroughly re-engineered conceptions of learning and schooling.
Never before has the opportunity been greater to use existing resources differently to benefit student learning. Shrinking school budgets and rising expectations are challenging schools and communities across the country to think and act differently and use their resources more efficiently and effectively to ensure all students reach higher standards.
Local, state and national experts are gathering this week in Columbus, Ohio to examine digital learning at a national summit entitled, Digital Learning: The Future of Schooling? The event is co-hosted by KnowledgeWorks, the Thomas B. Fordham Institute, and the Nord Family Foundation.
Nearly 40 percent of college freshmen in Ohio need to take remedial courses because they are unprepared for college-level work. The total bill for remedial classes in 2009 came to $130 million, rising to $147 million in 2010. Remediation is most costly to students who take longer to complete their degrees and are more likely to drop out.
Ohio should remove barriers to digital learning, encourage innovation, promote equity and create accountability for a new era of learning.