ESSA Unlocks Exciting New Opportunities for Creativity and Innovation
Leveraging technology to help more students reach their full potential
The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) is a true game changer. It gives states the right to define educational standards for their schools and the flexibility to determine how students meet those standards.
The bill also authorizes new funding streams that can potentially help states and districts invest in technology to support everything from personalized learning and enhanced digital content to advanced assessment and data analytics—as well as the staff development needed to put these tools to use. Here are some things to consider as you prepare to make these critical investments for your schools.
Embracing new models of learning that leverage technology
ESSA advances personalized and project-based learning and requires districts to give students wider access to digital content and develop more effective ways of teaching with it. According to the Alliance for Excellent Education, the move toward personalized and blended learning models places specific emphasis on:
- Developing trusted and caring relationships between teachers and students
- Connecting learning to the real world
- Linking curriculum to students’ strengths, interests, and aspirations
- Providing students individually targeted instruction, practice, and support in areas of need
- Creating more flexible learning environments
ESSA is a portent of the pivotal role technology will play in planning at all levels—and an opportunity to inject creativity into new educational models. But, districts must take care to invest in personalized and blended learning solutions that are proven to make a difference. The bill ties federal education funding to accountability plans, so it’s important to do your homework and choose evidence-based digital learning experiences that deliver enhanced outcomes for all students.
How to develop actionable plans and invest in the right technology
States are expected to file their accountability plans no later than September 2017. Now that ESSA is law, leaders at the school, district, and state level have an incredible opportunity to transform teaching and learning. To help you navigate the new legislation and make informed decisions about investing in educational technology, the Center for Digital Education (CDE) has compiled this comprehensive 40-page handbook. Download ESSA, EdTech, and the Future of Education now and start planning how to prioritize technology to ensure success for your district.
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