Virtual School Meanderings

May 22, 2020

Plugged In | 05.22.20 Aurora Institute Submits Comments On Proposed Education Department Priorities For Teacher-Led Professional Learning

A newsletter from the neo-liberals.

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Aurora Institute Applauds Proposed Education Department Priorities for Teacher-Led Professional Learning

Aurora Institute Applauds Proposed Education Department Priorities for Teacher-Led Professional Learning

The U.S. Department of Education is proposing new priorities, requirements, definitions, and selection criteria for the Education Innovation and Research (EIR) grant program. In public comments submitted last week by the Aurora Institute Center for Policy, we call the proposed priorities, “a step in the right direction of aligning teaching with the opportunities and systems of supports needed to be successful in an equity-oriented, student-centered, competency-based learning environment.”
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Susan Patrick sworn is to OVN Authority Board
Susan Patrick Appointed to
the Online Virginia Network Authority Board
Susan Patrick, President and CEO of Aurora Institute and co-founder of CompetencyWorks, has been appointed by Virginia Governor Ralph Northam to the Online Virginia Network Authority Board.

She will join 16 other members of the Online Virginia Network Authority to oversee the Online Virginia Network. The network was established to expand access to affordable education and credential programs that benefit Virginia’s citizens, public institutions of higher education, and employers.

Read More
Education Domain Blog
Innovation Zones Create Space for Local Educators to Lead Education Transformation
This post continues our special series on Future-Focused State Policy Actions to Transform K-12 Education. The series highlights policy issues to modernize our education system and align current educational practice with knowledge of how students learn best. We focus on leveraging state policy opportunities to increase access and open pathways toward future-focused learning experiences that build knowledge and skills for lifelong learning.
Read More
Featured Resource 
Webinar Recording: Introduction
to Competency-Based Education 
Competency-based education (CBE) transforms the culture, structure, and pedagogy of schools and districts to ensure that all students develop the skills they will need for success in college, career, and life. It is also called mastery-based, proficiency-based, or performance-based education. Each year, the Aurora Institute hosts a webinar to introduce CBE and answer frequently asked questions about how to get started. This year, the discussion included Susan Patrick and Eliot Levine, of Aurora Institute, along with Damarr Smith, who is project manager for Chicago Public Schools’ CBE implementation. You are invited to watch and share this archived recording and watch our  CompetencyWorks blog for helpful news, case studies, and research on CBE.
Watch

Plugged In Headlines: News About Education Transformation


Without fixing inequality the schools are always going to struggle
Lora Kelley, The New York Times 

States all over the map on remote learning rigor, detail
Sarah Schwartz, Education Week 

How the coronavirus pandemic will transform teaching
Kim Hart and Alison Snyder, Axios

The Coronavirus closed schools in a flash. But detailed planning must guide students’ return to classrooms, groups urge
Mark Keierleber, The 74 

Photo Diary: What a socially distanced school day looks like in Denmark, where students have already returned to class amid coronavirus
Meghan Gallagher, The 74

How to support English language learners during E-learning
Micah Castelo, EdTech: Focus on K-12

The COVID-19 slide: What summer learning loss can tell us about the potential impact of school closures on student academic achievement
Dr. Megan Kuhfeld and Dr. Beth Tarasawa, EdSource

How educators are keeping students engaged remotely
Jennifer Brown, EdTech: Focus on K-12 

Analysis: For hundreds of thousands of kids at some of America’s biggest school districts, there’s still no consistent plan for remote learning nearly 2 months into the pandemic
Travis Pillow and Bree Dusseault, The 74

A few schools reopen, but remote learning could go for years in US
Anya Kamenetz, NPR

How online learning research can improve remote instruction
Stephen Noonoo, EdSurge

Distance learning as an antidote to fear: 4 key considerations that put student and family well being first
Malika Ali, The 74

Serving special needs students during COVID-19: A rural educators story
Corey Mitchell, Education Week 

Socorro ISD (TX) receives $300,000 grant to implement personalized learning program for students
KTSM.com

Education officials see opportunity in Massachusetts’ remote learning moment
Yawu Miller, The Bay State Banner

University of California Will End Use of SAT and ACT in Admissions
Shawn Hubler, The New York Times

Aurora Institute in the News

Perspective | How personalized learning practices one school for remote learning  – via Education NC
The Aurora Institute highlighted several policy areas that are needed for planning what education looks like beyond 2020. These policy areas include: Competency-based education (CBE), credit flexibility, meaningful credentials, CBE pathways aligned to higher-education and the workforce, and balanced systems of assessments.

How school districts are outsmarting a microbe – via The New York Times
For a lot of parents, students and teachers, remote learning will be completely new, and where it’s new, it’s important to set realistic goals every day,” said Susan Patrick C.E.O. of Aurora Institute.

How to Reopen Schools: A 10-Point Plan Putting Equity at the Center – via Getting Smart
As the active ingredients for success with each reopening scenario are identified, Susan Patrick, the president and CEO of the Aurora Institute, reminds us, “equity must be baked into the recipe for effective reopening—into the culture, structures, and into the daily practices.”

Speaking of expanding education innovation – via The Hechinger Report
The Aurora Institute, a supporter of education innovation, recently released state and federal policy priorities that double down on ideas that have been popular in certain education circles for years.

Reminders
Register Now to Receive Early-Bird Savings for the Aurora Institute 2020 Symposium 
Join us for the Aurora Institute 2020 Symposium October 25-28, in San Antonio, Texas, for 3.5 days of active learning and critical examination of the most pressing issues in K-12 education. Early-bird registration rates are in effect through September 9, 2020. Attendees will benefit from rigorous exploration of new learning models, dynamic investigations into how districts are managing and leading innovation, and full immersion into personalized, student-centered pedagogy. Leave enlightened and equipped to take action in your school community.
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Aurora Institute Federal and State Education Policy Priorities to Transform K-12 Education

With a goal to ensure our nation’s education system is fit for purpose; oriented for anytime, anywhere learning; and better able to prepare students for the future, we announced a broad-based education policy agenda in Future-Focused State Policy Actions to Transform K-12 Education  and Federal Policy Priorities to Accelerate Education InnovationThe policy priorities contain 15 actions for state and federal policymakers to innovate K-12 education for equity and future-readiness for all learners.

Learn More
Symposium 2020 - October 25-28, 2020 | San Antonio, TX
Our Center for Policy  leads the multi-stage evolution of policy necessary for the growth of effective student-centered learning models toward the goals of high-quality learning and equity. Our policy priorities are designed to ensure the nation’s education system is fit for purpose and help move states forward from their current state of education to future systems.
CompetencyWorks is an online resource dedicated to K-12 competency-based education. Competency Works shares original research, knowledge, and a variety of perspectives through an informative blog with practitioner knowledge, policy advancements, papers on emerging issues, and a wiki with resources curated from across the field.
The Aurora Institute hosts a resource library containing more than 200 materials. Working collaboratively with diverse experts in the field, the Aurora Institute produces reports, books, policy briefs, blog posts, webinars, and related resources on key topics and tough issues that equip and empower educators and leaders to catalyze and scale personalized, next-generation learning models.
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Aurora Institute

The mission of Aurora Institute is to drive the transformation of education systems and accelerate the advancement of breakthrough policies and practices to ensure high-quality learning for all.

This email was sent by: Aurora Institute
1934 Old Gallows Road, Suite 350, Vienna, VA, 22182-4040 United States

May 8, 2020

Plugged In | 05.8.20 An Intro To Competency-Based Education Webinar And New Resources From The Aurora Institute

And from the neo-liberals.

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Aurora Institute - Plugged In
Susan Patrick, President and CEO, Aurora Institute; Co-founder of CompetencyWorks @susandpatrick Eliot Levine, Research Director, Aurora Institute; Manager of CompetencyWorks  @eliot_levine Damarr Smith, Project Manager of Competency-Based Education, Chicago Public Schools

Register Now for Our May 12th Webinar
An Introduction to Competency-Based Education

On Tuesday, May 12, 2020, from 3 p.m. to 4 p.m. ET, we will host a webinar to introduce participants to competency-based education.

This webinar will answer common questions about why competency-based education is important, how it relates to personalized learning, what makes an effective competency-based school, and what policies are needed to support it fully.

Join this webinar to hear from field leaders for an introduction to competency-based education in K-12 systems. Presenters include:

  • Susan Patrick, President and CEO, Aurora Institute; Co-founder of CompetencyWorks
  • Eliot Levine, Research Director, Aurora Institute; Manager of CompetencyWorks
  • Damarr Smith, Project Manager of Competency-Based Education, Chicago Public Schools
Register Now
From the Education Domain Blog

Profile of a Graduate to Redefine Student Success for the Future

Across the country, states are creating a Profile of a Graduate to set forth a modernized vision for student learning and achievement. These graduate profiles articulate the knowledge, skills, and dispositions students should have upon graduating from K-12 education to be prepared for college, careers, and civic life. Read More

U.S. Dept. of Education Announces New $300M Competitive Grant Program for Rethinking Education

The U.S. Department of Education announced a new $300 million grant program for states to rethink education and innovate. The funding is a competitive grant program for states to create innovative learning opportunities for K-12 and postsecondary learners in response to the COVID-19 emergency. Read More

Featured Resource

New Federal and State Policy Priorities

With a goal to ensure our nation’s education system is fit for purpose; oriented for anytime, anywhere learning; and better able to prepare students for the future, we announced a broad-based education policy agenda in Future-Focused State Policy Actions to Transform K-12 Education  and Federal Policy Priorities to Accelerate Education Innovation.

The briefs offer 15 policy actions, including a special recommendation to ensure continuity of learning—made particularly relevant by the current COVID-19 school closures.

Learn More

Plugged In Headlines: News About Education Transformation


Teaching, learning, and caring in the post-COVID era
Barnett Berry, Phi Delta Kappan 

Betsy DeVos introduces grants to ‘rethink’ learning during COVID-19
Andrew Ujifusa, Education Week

Harvard EdCast: Remote learning and the digital divide
Jill Anderson, Harvard

Following school closures, a ‘rude awakening’ for parents: How remote education is revealing alarming learning gaps, particularly for low-income families
Beth Hawkins, The74

The coronavirus crisis – In our schools and the American heartland
Olivia Walton, Marc Sternberg, Walton Family Foundation 

Survey tracker: Monitoring how K-12 educators are responding to coronavirus
Education Week Research Center

Coronavirus opens doors to rethinking education
Tara García Mathewson, The Hechinger Report

Opinion | Kids deserve more from school. Give them an education, not a calendar
Beth DeShone, Bridge

Four things to know about Betsy DeVos’ COVID-19 grants for parents, states
Andrew Ujifusa, Education Week 

8 tips from school leaders to school leaders on remote learning
Mary Ryerse, XQ

Experts say COVID-19 pandemic exposes education inequalities
Riley Bunch, The Tifton Gazette 

Ensuring equitable pathways for the class of 2020 amid the coronavirus
Ashley Jeffrey & Laura Jimenez, Center for American Progress

More California students are online, but digital divide runs deep with distance learning
Sydney Johnson & Michael Burke, EdSource

California parents of special education students find ways to cope with unique challenges during school closures
Carolyn Jones, EdSource

How long should a remote school day be? There’s no consensus
Stephen Noonoo, EdSurge

COVID-19: Report offers ‘blueprint’ for reopening schools and beyond
Evie Blad, Education Week

The pandemic is a crisis for students with special needs
Faith Hill, The Atlantic 

Aurora Institute in the News

How school districts are outsmarting a microbe
For a lot of parents, students and teachers, remote learning will be completely new, and where it’s new, it’s important to set realistic goals every day,” said Susan Patrick C.E.O. of Aurora Institute. Read More

How to Reopen Schools: A 10-Point Plan Putting Equity at the Center
As the active ingredients for success with each reopening scenario are identified, Susan Patrick, the president and CEO of the Aurora Institute, reminds us, “equity must be baked into the recipe for effective reopening—into the culture, structures, and into the daily practices.” Read More

Speaking of expanding education innovation
The Aurora Institute, a supporter of education innovation, recently released state and federal policy priorities that double down on ideas that have been popular in certain education circles for years. Read More

Reminders
Webinar Recording:
New Lessons from Advanced Online Teachers and Advice
for Getting Started in Online Teaching

Teaching online requires a unique skill set. We hosted a webinar focusing on best practices on online teaching in the context of continuity of learning during the coronavirus school closures. View this archived webinar to hear directly from teachers who have decades of experience in remote teaching online.

Watch
COVID-19 Continuity of Learning Resources 

While there is no playbook for an event of this scale and magnitude, we aim to support school leaders and educators at the front lines of the crisis. We’ve created the COVID-19 Continuity of Learning Resources page to supply educators, school leaders, and education policymakers at all levels with helpful resources to navigate the challenges presented by the coronavirus outbreak.

Learn More
Symposium 2020 - October 25-28, 2020 | San Antonio, TX
Our Center for Policy  leads the multi-stage evolution of policy necessary for the growth of effective student-centered learning models toward the goals of high-quality learning and equity. Our policy priorities are designed to ensure the nation’s education system is fit for purpose and help move states forward from their current state of education to future systems.
CompetencyWorks is an online resource dedicated to K-12 competency-based education. Competency Works shares original research, knowledge, and a variety of perspectives through an informative blog with practitioner knowledge, policy advancements, papers on emerging issues, and a wiki with resources curated from across the field.
The Aurora Institute hosts a resource library containing more than 200 materials. Working collaboratively with diverse experts in the field, the Aurora Institute produces reports, books, policy briefs, blog posts, webinars, and related resources on key topics and tough issues that equip and empower educators and leaders to catalyze and scale personalized, next-generation learning models.
Visit
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Twitter
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Aurora Institute

The mission of Aurora Institute is to drive the transformation of education systems and accelerate the advancement of breakthrough policies and practices to ensure high-quality learning for all.

This email was sent by: Aurora Institute
1934 Old Gallows Road, Suite 350, Vienna, VA, 22182-4040 United States

May 5, 2020

Act Now: Aurora Institute Symposium 2020 Early-Bird Registration Savings Ending Soon

An item from the neo-liberals.

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Register Now for Early-Bird Pricing

Register to attend the Aurora Institute Symposium 2020 today. Early-bird registration discounts end September 9, 2020.

Innovative educators and experts come together at the Aurora Institute Symposium year after year to learn together, identify solutions to their toughest challenges, and share the latest trends and innovations in future-focused education.

Take advantage of early-bird registration discounts before the end of your school or district’s fiscal year to save on the cost of attending the Aurora Institute Symposium October 25-28, 2020 in San Antonio. Attendee registration is now open.

We look forward to seeing you in San Antonio.

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Early-Bird Registration for #Aurora20 is now open! Explore details about the conference and register to attend today to get early-bird rates by Sept. 9: http://ow.ly/QgpO30qzPtL
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Early-Bird Registration for the Aurora Institute Symposium is now open. Be sure to register for early-bird pricing by 9/9: http://ow.ly/QgpO30qzPtL @Aurora_Inst

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.@Aurora_Inst has now opened registration for the #Aurora20 Symposium in San Antonio. Don’t miss your chance to register for early-bird pricing by 9/9: http://ow.ly/QgpO30qzPtL​​​​​​​
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About Us

The mission of the Aurora Institute is to drive the transformation of education systems and accelerate the advancement of breakthrough policies and practices to ensure high-quality learning for all.

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The Aurora Institute Symposium was formerly the iNACOL Symposium.
This email was sent by: Aurora Institute
1934 Old Gallows Road, Suite 350, Vienna, VA, 22182-4040 United States

May 1, 2020

Teacher Talk Webinar | 5/5: Lessons From Advanced Online Teachers And Advice For Getting Started In Online Teaching

An item from the neo-liberals.

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Aurora Institute - A New Dawn for Every Learner | Stay Connected
Teacher Talk Webinar

Lessons from Advanced Online Teachers and Advice for Getting Started in Online Teaching

Register

Teaching online requires a unique skill set. We are hosting an upcoming webinar focused on best practices on online teaching in the context of continuity of learning during the coronavirus school closures. Join this webinar Tuesday, May 5, 2020, at 3:00 p.m. ET, to hear directly from teachers who have decades of experience in remote teaching online.

Online teaching requires strategies, tools, and new methods for engagement and participation. How do teachers build culture and community in online classrooms? What are strategies for learner engagement? What methods support high-quality instruction and assessment for anytime, anywhere learning? Bring these questions and more to a live webinar with presentations, chat interactions, questions and answers, and an exclusive opportunity to engage in virtual learning with online teachers. The webinar will emphasize guidance for teachers who have suddenly made the shift to remote teaching and learning with little notice due to COVID-19.

We encourage expert online teachers and beginners alike to join and engage with each other to find inspiration during these unprecedented and challenging times.

Presenters:

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This email was sent by: Aurora Institute
1934 Old Gallows Road, Suite 350, Vienna, VA, 22182-4040 United States

April 30, 2020

Reminder: Request For Presentation Proposals Is Open | Aurora Institute Symposium 2020

Note that this call for proposals is due tomorrow.

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Time Is Running Out
To Submit Your Proposal

Aurora Institute is now accepting Requests for Presentation (RFP) proposals in 9 strands for the Aurora Institute Symposium.

Innovative educators and experts come together at the Aurora Institute Symposium year after year to learn together, identify solutions to their toughest challenges, and share the latest trends and innovations in future-focused education.

Access the RFP and submit your proposal to presentThe deadline for submitting presentation proposals is Friday, May 1, 2020, at 11:59 p.m. ET.

The Aurora Institute Program Committee will give priority to proposals that provide engaging and interactive learning opportunities, modeling personalized, competency-based approaches, drawing on participant experiences, and promoting dialogue and exchange. Across the various presentation formats and strands, we also encourage presentation proposals that target specific nuances of implementation that dig below the surface and unpack rather than being very general in nature.

If you have questions regarding the RFP, please contact Christy Ellis, Events Project Manager, at cellis@aurora-institute.org. For other frequently asked questions, explore the Symposium FAQs web page.

New Symposium Strand

As a result of the current shift in education caused by COVID-19, we have added another strand to the Symposium sessions and workshops to reflect the Continuity of Learning efforts currently underway. By introducing the “Anytime/Anywhere Learning” strand, presenters can provide insight on strategies and resources on implementing remote learning opportunities, share lessons learned, and showcase best practices.

View Our RFP Webinar


Aurora Institute recently hosted a special webinar to offer insights on the Symposium RFP process. Our Chief Operating Officer, Bruce Friend shared pointers that will help you craft a standout session proposal. View this archived webinar to also learn about the structure of the Symposium, session strands and formats, understand how proposals are evaluated, and discover ways to heighten interactivity in your session.
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Share With Your Colleagues on Twitter

View our #webinar on submitting proposals for the #Aurora2020 Symposium to learn some pointers on presenting: http://ow.ly/c7hn30quK5v @Aurora_Inst
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You don’t want to miss an opportunity to present at #Aurora20, Oct 25-28 in San Antonio. @Aurora_Inst is now accepting requests for presentation proposals until 5/1. Submit your proposal today: http://ow.ly/5kOg30qpD49
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Aurora Institute is now accepting presentation proposals for #Aurora20 held on Oct. 25-28 in San Antonio. Be sure to submit your proposal before 5/1: http://ow.ly/5kOg30qpD49 @Aurora_Inst
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About Us

The mission of the Aurora Institute is to drive the transformation of education systems and accelerate the advancement of breakthrough policies and practices to ensure high-quality learning for all.

Facebook
Twitter
YouTube
The Aurora Institute Symposium was formerly the iNACOL Symposium.
This email was sent by: Aurora Institute
1934 Old Gallows Road, Suite 350, Vienna, VA, 22182-4040 United States
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