Back Office Business: Edtech in action

2/26/2013 12:00:00 AM

Memphis City Schools Using Video for PD

Challenge: Memphis City Schools is working to create a video library of its classroom teachers using effective methods to help all teachers improve their skills.

Solution: The district is working with Teachscape, whose video capture and sharing solution allows educators at all 180 schools to capture a complete lesson or lesson segment from any video-recording device and use it to reflect on instructional practice.”The use of Teachscape’s video technology allows our teachers to be their own first observers,” says Monica Jordan, coordinator of reflective practice and teacher support at Memphis City Schools. “They can use it for self-reflection, feedback, instructional planning, lesson prep, coteaching, and more.”

Three companies form partnership to deliver personalized digital content to Michigan schools

Challenge: Michigan’s Education Achievement Authority (EAA) needed to find a way to help underperforming students at its lowest-performing schools make significant academic gains.

Solution: Compass Learning, School Improvement Network, and Agilix Labs formed a joint effort to work with EAA. The companies will integrate digital content from Compass Learning’s Odyssey and Renzulli Learning, School Improvement Network’s Educator Effectiveness System with Buzz, and a personalized learning platform from Agilix. The digital solution will serve as the core of a comprehensive, personalized learning system that allows teachers to deliver an individualized learning plan for every participating student. “With Buzz, Compass Learning’s Odyssey, and Renzulli Learning, we have a powerful combination of the best curriculum, content, and instruction that puts students at the center of learning for all subjects, schools, and mastery levels,” says John Covington, chancellor of EAA.

Calcasieu Parish Public Schools implements a geovisual analytics program

Challenge: As districts continue to face declining budgets and enrollments, they are turning to technology to translate student data into actionable insights.

Solution: Calcasieu Parish Public Schools in Louisiana has implemented GuideK12 to allow district leaders to analyze data to help inform academic performance and optimize resources. By mapping data, people can see patterns and trends that were previously hidden in spreadsheets or simply unavailable. “We were flying blind on some of these more difficult tasks before GuideK12, which gives us the ability to create scenarios and quickly see how the changes affect the make-up of a school,” says Sheryl Abshire, CTO of Calcasieu Parish Public Schools. “When superintendents can quickly report how and why decisions are made, the integrity of the district increases dramatically.”

Rockwood School District tracks staff compliance digitally

Challenge: The Rockwood School District in Missouri needed an easier way to make sure its 4,000 staff members were completing their six annual, mandatory, compliance trainings.

Solution: To streamline the process, the district implemented an online training module offered by PublicSchoolWORKS. The program lets the district automatically notify staff of their required training, as well as alerting them when deadlines are approaching. “We were trying to track 4,000 training logs, which was difficult and labor-intensive,” says Katie Reboulet, director of human resources at the Rockwood School District. “Within one week of the compliance due date, all of our staff had completed their training.”

Library software a key component in NYCDOE ’s Books-to-Kids program

Challenge: The New York City Department of Education (NYCDOE) wanted to connect students and teachers at its public schools to digital and print resources.

Solution: NYCDOE worked with libraries throughout the city to create MyLibraryNYC. As part of MyLibraryNYC, Follett’s Destiny Library Manager system will help connect students and teachers with each other and to millions of digital and print resources through the public library’s new search and social networking interface. By 2015, MyLibraryNYC will provide digital access and school-site delivery to more than 17 million books and informational resources. The MyLibraryNYC pilot first launched last year in 86 schools. Surveys conducted after the pilot showed that nearly 90% of participating teachers said the program better equipped them to teach, and they also reported that students in the pilot were three times more likely to check out a book from their public library than those in non-participating schools.

Calcasieu Parish Public Schools implements a geovisual analytics program

Challenge: As districts continue to face declining budgets and enrollments, they are turning to technology to translate student data into actionable insights.

Solution: Calcasieu Parish Public Schools in Louisiana has implemented GuideK12 to allow district leaders to analyze data to help inform academic performance and optimize resources. By mapping data, people can see patterns and trends that were previously hidden in spreadsheets or simply unavailable. “We were flying blind on some of these more difficult tasks before GuideK12, which gives us the ability to create scenarios and quickly see how the changes affect the make-up of a school,” says Sheryl Abshire, CTO of Calcasieu Parish Public Schools. “When superintendents can quickly report how and why decisions are made, the integrity of the district increases dramatically.”

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