Achieve released a new paper titled Assessment to Support Competency-Based Pathways which addresses the role of summative assessment, clarifies key assessment challenges, and provides examples and recommendations that are useful to those who wish to design and implement assessment systems to support competency-based pathways.
Additionally, Springpoint is sharing a new set of resources, “Inside Mastery Based High Schools: Profiles and Conversations.” These resources — which include profiles, artifacts, and interview transcripts with school leaders — are drawn from visits to six competency-based high schools last year. Together, they provide a vivid picture of what competency-based learning looks like in a variety of contexts.
Springpoint began this project to address a need for concrete examples of competency-based learning in practice. Given the novelty of this work, they realized that many new school designers know the theory behind competency-based learning but would benefit from a deeper an understanding of its day-to-day practicalities.
They visited the following six schools:
- Boston Day & Evening Academy, Boston’s first evening high school to grant mastery-based diplomas;
- Casco Bay High School, a mastery-based high school in Portland, Maine;
- Parker Charter Essential School, a project-based, mastery-based school in Devens, Massachusetts;
- Making Community Connections Charter School, a middle/high school that puts student agency at the center of its design, founded by the QED Foundation;
- Next Charter School, a mastery-based, personalized model in rural New Hampshire; and
- Maine’s Regional School Unit 2, a mastery-based and student-centered community of schools in rural Maine.
For each school, they’ve included: (1) a brief profile with an overview of the model, student population, and location, (2) a transcript of our interview with the school’s leaders — these are especially useful because so many leaders discussed key decisions and lessons learned, and (3) relevant artifacts including student schedules, competency frameworks, sample mastery-based student transcripts, graduation checklists, and goal setting protocols. Springpoint is hoping that these resources will be helpful to others involved in designing competency-based school models.
Communication and Community
- Thomas Rooney, in his article titled How Lindsay Activated Change by Activating Their Community, discusses the role of community in the transition process to competency education. He explores methods to engage leadership and the community, the development of a Strategic Design plan, and what students can bring to the process.
- Innovate Public Schools offers a Parent Guide for competency education. This article discusses the implications of competency education for the school and children, what it looks like in practice, which schools and districts use competency-based systems, and top resources to learn more.
News and Events
- This Chalkbeat article investigates the recent groundswell of competency education across the United States, featuring Adams County School District 50, Building 21, Sanborn High School, Summit Preparatory, and Rocketship, with additional commentary from Susan Patrick and Lillian Pace.
- iNACOL is hosting a Leadership webinar on June 10, 2015, from 2:00-3:00pm ET. This webinar features Susan Patrick, President and CEO of iNACOL, and Chris Sturgis, Principal of MetisNet, as they discuss their recently co-authored CompetencyWorks report titled, Competency Education and Blended Learning: Insights from Experts. This webinar is free to attend, but please register here for login information and further directions.
- CCSSO is hosting two webinars. The first is on May 26, 2015, at 1:00pm ET titled Performance Assessment 2.0: Lessons from Large-Scale Policy & Practice. Here is the link to register. The second is scheduled for June 5, 2015 and is titled Innovation in Action: State Pathways for Advancing Student-Centered Learning, which focuses on examples from ILN states on how they’re using the ILN framework to advance innovation. Click here to register.
For more news, information, and resources in competency education, follow us on twitter: @CompetencyWorks.