This article reviews some of the new state policy resources and highlights the types of discussion and initiatives taking place in the individual states. Nevada is joining the group of states that are supporting innovative districts, and Mississippi is supporting an innovation network. The most important thing to pay attention to is the discussion and debate in Maine as they decide whether they are going to continue to believe that their students and educators can learn to high standards and will keep learning how to support students in doing so…or if they modify expectations. Fingers crossed that the discussion moves from what’s wrong to what we need to make sure all of our students learn!
State Policy Resources
Across the country, state policymakers have been engaged in thinking through how they can strengthen their policies and infrastructures to better support personalized, competency-based education. Take some time to check out the resources at KnowledgeWorks‘ Every Student Succeeds Act: Mapping Emerging Trends for Personalized Learning in State ESSA Plans to get a sense of how policy directions are shifting.
Other resources that you might finding interesting and/or helpful are:
- Rethinking State Accountability to Support Personalized, Competency-Based Learning in K-12 Education by iNACOL
- What Gets Tested Gets Taught: Cautions for Using College Admissions Tests in State Accountability Systems by Achieve
- State Policy Implementation: An Imperative for Equity by Joey Hunziker, Program Manager, Innovation Lab Network, CCSSO
- The Nature of Accountability is Ready for Change from Colorado Education Initiative
- How ESSA and IDEA Can Support College and Career Readiness for Students With Disabilities: Considerations for States from American Youth Policy Forum (AYPF) and the College & Career Readiness & Success (CCRS) Center
What’s Happening in the States
- Senate panel slams brakes on mastery program in order to better understand progress from the first phase.
- State school leader says Yorkville works to make education ‘relevant’ for students
- New Belvidere school program incorporates students’ real-world experience
- Round Lake High School’s new approach to class time gives students more flexibility, independence
As Maine continues to move forward, there is more discussion about the opportunities and challenges of the proficiency-based diploma and less about what is required to ensure that all students succeed or make proficiency-based education a success. The following will give you a taste of the discussion:
- Maine May Dilute Proficiency-Based Diploma Law
- Maine rethinks requiring student proficiency to earn a diploma
- Teachers, parents defend proficiency-based learning
- “I Had 20 Kids In 20 Spots:” Where Student-Paced Learning Has And Hasn’t Worked In Maine
- Schools say they’ll stick with proficiency diploma, even if law is repealed
- State Rep. Sampson: In Maine schools, ‘proficiency’ may not mean what you think it does
- Proficiency-based learning prepares for Maine’s future
- Lewiston modifying aspects of student learning, grading system
- Auburn teachers defend learning system under fire
- The proficiency-based diploma: There was a better way
- Proficiency-based education system? We have been here before
It’s worth catching up on University of Maine Presque Isle from Hechinger Report as well!
- Melrose schools continue shift to new strategies with eye toward competency-based education
- Massachusetts Consortium for Innovative Education Assessment (MCIEA) has released Beyond Standardized Tests: A New Vision for Assessing Student Learning and School Quality
- Governor Snyder proposes efforts to upgrade career technical programs with competency-based education approach
- 5 ways Gov. Rick Snyder wants Michigan to change its thinking about education
The Department of Education announced they are now accepting applications for their Competency-Based Education Network. School districts wishing to implement an innovative approach that allows flexibility in the classroom can join the network to study and establish recommendations for implementing personalized learning initiatives statewide. For more information on the Competency-Based Education Network application process, visit the Nevada Department of Education.
- Our Quest to Personalize Competency-Based Learning in New Hampshire by Jonathan G. Vander Els and Debra Holloway
New York City
- New York City Mastery Collaborative is offering professional development modules.