With the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) in place, states and communities have more flexibility than ever to pursue system-changing innovation so their local education systems better meet the needs of each learner.
And some states, such as Indiana and North Dakota, are taking advantage by pursuing legislation that would pave the way for more districts to implement competency-based education and personalized learning approaches.
But state-level funding and traditional education policies are not the only barriers to successfully implementing personalized learning. KnowledgeWorks has learned from our research with districts across the country that local operational practices can create even more roadblocks to systems change.
As states create more flexibility for local districts to innovate, there are some key things district leaders can do to ensure they can move personalized learning approaches from just a few classrooms or schools to district-wide practice.
The self-assessment asks questions about the following operational areas that enable district’s to effectively scale personalized learning, and provides areas where your district could benefit from some additional focus.
- Future-focus: Do you have a common vision for what your school district wants to provide its students? Are decisions aligned to making this future a reality?
- Supportive Environment: Does your district provide a strong culture for educators? Do they feel empowered to take risks and learn from each other?
- Open doors: Are you open and transparent with students, parents and community members? When someone walks into one of your classrooms, will students be able to explain what they are learning and why?