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Fall Webinar Series

As prologue to the first virtual Aurora Institute Symposium, we’re offering a series of more than 20 webinars focused on salient issues from the field of personalized, competency-based education. Learn firsthand from system leaders, practitioners, researchers, and educators who are accelerating the advancement of breakthrough policies and practices to ensure high-quality learning for all. This series includes a special set of research-focused webinars.

Aurora Institute Virtual Symposium

Held October 26-28, 2020, thousands of education innovators will gather for three days of learning, networking, inspiration, and challenges and solutions. Keynotes and sessions will immerse participants in topics ranging from COVID-19 and online and blended learning to global best practices and bright spots of innovation to educational equity, social-emotional learning, and trends driving the future of teaching and learning. True to tradition, we promise to keep students at the center of our time together. Please join us.

National Policy Forum

Courageous and visionary policy actions are needed to advance the transformation of teaching and learning in K-12 education. Each year, we convene state policymakers, advocates, funders, system and school leaders, and educators for an intensive exploration of education policy trends and possibilities. Together, we grapple with issues driving the entry into and deepening of student-centered learning models, learn from states leading the way, and make time for targeted connection among education decision-makers.

Session Recordings Now Available for Day 1, Day 2, and Day 3.

6 Keynotes

112+ Speakers

30+ Breakouts

14 Authors

Day 1 – October 26, 2020

Keynote Plenary 1: Future of Education: Leapfrogging in a Time of Crisis
Plenary 2: Bright Spots in Driving Collective Change
Book Clubs: Meet the Experts with Authors

Day 1 Details

Day 2 – October 27, 2020

Keynote Plenary 1: Lifting Up Best Practices for Quality and Equity—Even During COVID-19
Plenary 2: Bright Spots from Personalized, Competency-Based Districts and Schools Across the USA

Day 2 Details

Day 3 – October 28, 2020

Keynote Plenary 1: Student Panel Plenary – Students are Catalysts for Change: Youth Perspectives on Education
Closing Plenary: Top 10 Trends for the Future of K-12 Education: A Path Forward & Equitable Futures

Day 3 Details

Keynote Speakers


Susan Patrick | Aurora Institute


Dr. Rebecca Winthrop | The Brookings Institution


Dr. Anthony Jackson | Asia Society


Dr. Katherine Casey | imaginEDU


Oscar Santos | Center for Collaborative Education


Stacy Caldwell | Mastery Transcript Consortium


Rachael Stephens | National Governors Association


Javier Guzman | Big Picture Learning


David Ruff | Great Schools Partnership


Renee Hill | Riverside Unified School District


John Clemente | South Bronx Community Charter


Kristen Watkins | Dallas Independent School District


Dr. Steve Kossakoski | NH VLACS


Cory Steiner | Northern Cass


Brenda Diaz | Nashville Big Picture High School


Student Panel


Nicholas C. Donohue | Nellie Mae Education Foundation


Virgel Hammonds | KnowledgeWorks


Felicia Cumings Smith | National Geographic

Why You Should Attend

Education innovation experts and professional educators make the Aurora Institute Symposium their annual conference of choice because they want to access the largest community of active practitioners, thought leaders, and policy leaders advancing powerful, personalized learning experiences and learner-centered innovative models. In the spirit of democratizing knowledge and a recognition of the opportunities and challenges brought by COVID-19, registration to the 2020 Aurora Institute Virtual Symposium is offered free of charge.

Join us if you seek to:

  • Sharpen your knowledge and skills on what’s possible in education and expand your professional network;
  • Build a deeper understanding of the latest trends in future-focused, student-centered learning;
  • Raise your visibility in the field and tap into the energy that is driving the future of teaching and learning;
  • Learn from other practitioners and leading educators about what works and find solutions to designing innovative new models in K-12 education; or
  • Push your school and community to leave the comfort zone of time-bound, centuries-old and inequitable practices.

2020 Aurora Institute Symposium

October 26 – 28, 2020

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