Advocating for STUDENT AGENCY & SYSTEMIC POLICY CHANGE
The process of rebuilding the education system to unleash the power of students tonavigate their own learning to self-mastery, will not be easy.
Most all who have been working toward this vision recognize how hard it is - and will be. We're dealing with very large institutions, with constrained budgets, old buildings, and a workforce that was trained for the school-centric paradigm. Processes and polices of today serve the factory-based model of schooling and instruction - not the digital age of networks, webs, and ubiquitous technology access.
Many describe this change challenge as trying toturn the Titanic.
EIC offers a more hopeful analogy for change: transferring students from the large ocean liner of education to smaller speedboats of learning that students themselves can enjoy driving.
From all our doctoral studies, conferences and research about this process, we know that transformation must actively engage all stakeholders is seeing the problems with the current system and co-designing the solutions from the bottom up. This means including students, teachers, parents, school leaders, district and state administrators, and community members in the process. This calls for deep COLLABORATION and collective advocacy for making the difficult changes that are entailed.
We also appreciate the high quality case study research done by the World Economic Forum's New Vision for Education, WEF 2015. The report employs a learning system process framework for comparing how countries and regional school systems have differently implemented technology-enabled personalized learning. This research also indicates how implementation strategies can and should differ based on existing conditions and resources (e.g., levels of teacher training, availability, and funding). The third case study in that WEF report is on SUMMIT Public Schools network in California and Washington State. Summit PS employs an original design of a Personalized Learning Platform (PLP) that enables competency-based learning to mastery that incorporates student choice of curriculum "playlists" and cross-disciplinary project-based learning demonstrations. The Summit school network has offered free use and support of this PLP by any group of educators who demonstrate readiness to adopt it (through Summit Learning basecamp). We believe the conditions in Nevada are ripe for implementation of this platform and seek to support the Summit pilot schools through the edPORTAL platform and programs as part of the CBE pilot network program being established by NV Department of Education (NDE) since passage of AB110 in June.
We believe that Nevada's ESSA plan (Every Student Succeeds Act) can provide significant support to the implementation of the CBE pilot network in Nevada and support the vision to transition to student-powered personalized learning.ESSA enables more flexibility for accountability standards at the state level - including the freedom to employ competency and mastery-based criteria for individualized student progression and graduation - independent of time and attendance requirements. We seek to support NDE in leveraging this opportunity to develop competency and mastery-based assessment measures to replace the current course crediting and graduation diploma criteria that are time-based to minimum proficiencies that are outdated and inadequate for 21st century students to be successful in our society and occupations.
In June 2017, the Nevada Legislature approved a "sleeper big", Assembly Bill 110, that establishes a network of pilot schools to expand awareness and policy development while implementing Competency or Mastery-based education programs. While AB110 was approved with no funding, the NV Dept. of Education has encouraged pilot schools to participate and use funding from Title programs to acquire technology and staff needed to support the 1:1 programs.
EDUCATION POLICY PLAYERS in NEVADA: Educate Nevada NOW (ENN) believes that "Every child deserves a quality education" and works to increase education funding and methods of distribution to public schools - including blocking ESA implementation through legislation.
Guinn Center for Policy Priorities - Educating Nevada Advocates for public school quality excellence and equity via innovation, community engagement, high standards, adequate funding (e.g., preventing reallocation of students & public funds via vouchers, education savings accounts, and privately run charter schools):
Advocates for "school choice" seek to expand the number of public charters school options as well as private school access throughvouchers and education savings accounts:
Nevada Policy Research Institute; Parents know their children best. That’s why NPRI wants to empower parents to let them choose the school and school system — public, private, online, charter, homeschooling, etc. — that’s best for their child.