Tag: equity

Summer Reading on Competency-Based Education

July 11, 2018 by

Is it summer yet? It feels like the rate of districts turning to competency-based education is increasing (I just returned from a meeting in Michigan where I learned of at least eight districts advancing toward a competency-based system), and certainly our rate of learning is. Although I actually hope that everyone disconnect for a few weeks during the summer and not think about competency education, I did promise to provide an updated summer reading list. I’ve organized the list into categories: learning sciences; for newbies seeking to understand what competency education is; building commitment; preparing for implementation; and thinking ahead on the issues and challenges in the field of competency-based education. (more…)

Webinar on Equity in Competency Education

July 9, 2018 by

We are facing a substantial challenge in ensuring that we are implementing effective competency-based strategies. Join CompetencyWorks on July 18 2-3 ET for a discussion about Designing for Equity: Leveraging Competency-Based Education to Ensure All Students Succeed. Learn about design principles to pay attention to and red flags that there may be a problem in implementation. Register here.

Student-Centered Learning and Inclusion: Getting the Details Right

June 7, 2018 by

This post originally appeared at Education Week on March 29, 2018.

Will student-centered learning be a real long-term driver for equity and inclusion? As with so much in education reform, the devil is in the details. (more…)

Levers and Logic Models: A Framework to Guide Research and Design of High-Quality Competency-Based Education Systems

May 31, 2018 by

Click image to enlarge.

Levers and Logic Models: A Framework to Guide Research and Design of High-Quality Competency-Based Education Systems was released by iNACOL and CompetencyWorks today. We developed the logic model in response to the call from researchers and practitioners at the National Summit on K-12 Competency-Based Education.

Although I’m listed as a co-author, I want to be very clear that this work was led by Katherine Casey with tremendously valuable input from Wendy Surr (AIR) and Eric Toshalis (Students at the Center/Jobs for the Future). Other members of the Logic Model for CBE Technical Advisory Group who contributed to this include: Kim Carter, Jennifer Charlot, Cory Curl, Elena Diaz-Bilello, Theresa Ewald, Pat Fitzsimmons, Laurie Gagnon, Virgel Hammonds, Laura Hilger, Dina Klein, Chris Liang-Vergara, Rebecca Midles, Joy Nolan, Ace Parsi, Susan Patrick, Amelia Peterson, Linda Pittenger, Andresse St. Rose, Sydney Schaef, Samantha Sherwood, and Jonathan Vander Els.

Four things to be aware of when you are ready to read this paper: (more…)

Meeting Students on Their Own Cultural Turf

May 30, 2018 by

This post originally appeared at Getting Smart on April 7, 2018.

As teachers, we are hardwired to look favorably upon students who remind us of ourselves. It is healthy to reflect on this for a moment, as this is something that most teachers have rarely paused to consider. For this reason, Columbia University Associate Professor Chris Emdin’s New York Times bestselling book For White Folks Who Teach in the Hood…and the Rest of Y’a’ll Too: Reality Pedagogy and Urban Education may cause unease in some readers. His argument is that it is within this place of discomfort that real transformation occurs. (more…)

Talking about Race (and Mastery): Part 2

May 12, 2018 by

This post originally appeared at Mastery Collaborative on April 25, 2018. Read the first post here.

In our last post about takeaways from trainings with Border Crossers and the Mastery Collaborative team about race, racism, and mastery, we shared members’ ideas about equity issues in traditional grading. In this post, we share participants’ ideas about how race can play out in our classroom dynamics in inequitable ways, and how we can plan for more just, and equitable, and effective facilitation moves. (more…)

Talking about Race (and Mastery)

April 25, 2018 by

This post and all images originally appeared at Mastery Collaborative on March 20, 2018.

A crucial aspect of being in the MC community is to explore, as a community of public schools, connections between culturally responsive education (CRE) and mastery (also known as competency-based education, or CBE). In our second year as a program, an MC working group from across our member schools began to dive in and identify connections between CRE and CBE: transparency, changing power dynamics, and positive learning identity. (more…)

Understanding and Meeting Learners Where They Are using the UDL Lens

April 17, 2018 by

This is the third in a three part series by Kathleen McClaskey, co-author of Make Learning Personal and How to Personalize LearningRead the first and second posts.

In the CompetencyWorks paper based on the 2017 National Summit on K-12 Competency-Based Education, Designing for Equity, one of the four key issues in advancing competency-based education is “meeting students where they are.” It describes that a high quality competency-based system connects learning in relationships and requires educators to understand their learners as individuals and then select strategies based upon that knowledge. Before we look at how to meet learners where they are, let’s review what has presented in Part 1 and Part 2 of this series. (more…)

Hiring for Cultural Responsiveness – A Necessary Consideration

April 11, 2018 by

It is April. This month brings with it various seasons for various people. For some, April brings the start of Spring. For others, it brings tax season. For sports enthusiasts, it brings the prospect of another baseball season. But for principals like me, it brings hiring seasoning. This is the time of year where we make decisions about continuing current staff contracts, are informed about retirements and resignations, and begin to hire staff for the next school year. Hiring season brings with it the complex dance of screening applications, interviewing, hiring, and determining how to best support these new hires. For principals, hiring season should also bring a time on introspection centered on cultural responsiveness – before the aforementioned process begins. Researchers (Johnson, 2006; Terrell & Lindsey, 2009) have shown that principals must clearly understand their own assumptions, beliefs, and values about people and cultures different from themselves in order to lead effectively in settings with diverse student populations. If a school principal serves a diverse student population, he/she must know what he/she believes about culture and race BEFORE engaging in the hiring process. (more…)

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