This summer, the Board of Education approved a new five-year Strategic Plan that will guide the District’s work through 2024. This plan centers around three goal areas: Authentic Learning, Cultural Competence and the Whole Child. The Board will seek to unpack these goal areas in more detail at its work sessions over the next three months. The first of these work sessions will focus on Authentic Learning and will be held this Tuesday, September 24.
As we begin to build community understanding of the goals of the strategic plan, we will be seeking your feedback to help assess our current standing in each goal area using a new tool called Thoughtexchange. This tool allows us to pose an open ended question to which you can provide anonymous feedback. Users can then see the comments of others and express their level of alignment with them by “starring” the thoughts that have been submitted. This technology enables all voices to be heard and brings those ideas around which there is the most agreement to the surface.
I ask that you take some time to reflect on Authentic Learning as described below, then click the link to access the Thoughtexchange (no account or login necessary) to share your perspectives and star those of others regarding the following:
Authentic learning is defined as when students participate in an experience that addresses real-world problems and mimics the work of professionals; involves presentation of findings to audiences beyond the classroom; requires open-ended inquiry, thinking skills and metacognition; and allows students to engage in discourse and social learning in a community of learners in which they direct their own learning (Rule, 2006).
Under the Strategic Plan, we seek to develop innovative problem solvers, critical and creative thinkers, effective communicators and strong collaborators who can apply their knowledge and skills to navigate real world challenges. Specifically, we will be looking at ways to advance relevant and authentic experiences for all students, and exploring how our use of time and space can better support these efforts.
As a District how well are we currently addressing Authentic Learning and how would you like to see us grow in this area?
You may submit as many thoughts as you would like. After you have submitted your comments, please spend some time reviewing and starring the comments of others. The Thoughtexchange session will be open for input until noon on Monday, September 23. Feel free to check back and add feedback as often as you want between now and then.
We will incorporate this feedback as part of the Board Work Session this coming Tuesday, and we will check back for more input throughout our Strategic Plan implementation to help us to monitor our progress.
Thank you for your participation.