South Carolina District Expands Digital Learning Initiative

Discovery Education announced today an expansion of its partnership with Horry County Schools(HCS), South Carolina’s third largest school system and a member of Digital Promise’s League of Innovative Schools. Through this expansion, Discovery Education will support Horry County Schools’ new Personalized Digital Learning (PDL) initiative with digital content and customized professional development.

Horry County Schools’ PDL initiative supports the district’s vision of being a premier, world-class school system. The district’s PDL initiative supports that vision by providing students individual pathways for learning and by enhancing each teacher’s ability to create customized student learning plans.

At the beginning of this school year, Horry County Schools launched the new 1:1 effort as part of the PDL initiative, distributing iPads to students in all of the district’s 11 middle schools. The program will expand to include all students in grades 3-12 over the next three years. To further support the district’s PDL initiative, HCS is now providing students in grades 6-8 access to the Discovery Education Science Techbook digital textbook, an interactive program with lesson plans that can be used on any computer, laptop, or tablet. Since 2004, Horry County Schools has used both Discovery Education Streaming and Discovery Education’s professional development services.

HCS is supporting its PDL initiative with job-embedded and ongoing professional development for both school leaders and teachers. This professional development focuses on integrating educational technologies into classroom instruction and developing school-wide practices and strategies to meet a variety of educational challenges. Discovery Education’s team of professional development advisors focus on how to use digital content in HCS classrooms to differentiate and personalize learning.

“Personalized learning is the key to increasing student engagement and allows us to maximize the value each student receives by tailoring the learning based on a student’s needs, interests, and ability,” said Dr. Cindy Elsberry, superintendent of Horry County Schools.

Discovery Education Science Techbook is built upon the 5E model of instruction, a non-linear curriculum pathway that promotes inquiry-based learning, and literacy and thinking skills through interactive digital lessons. The Techbook series supports multiple learning styles through interactive content that appeals to digital learners and real-time updates that allow teachers to incorporate current events and cutting-edge thinking into their curricula.

In addition, Discovery Education Techbook digital textbooks offer built-in assessments that measure students’ progress. The Techbook series is aligned to individual state standards as well as the Common Core State Standards.

Discovery Education Science Techbook is cloud-based and works on any platform: iPads, tablets, mobile devices, laptops, and desktops. The model lessons embedded throughout the Techbook series provide teaching strategies for different classroom configurations, whether whole group, small group, or 1-to-1.