Richmond County School System Taking Steps to Scale Modern Learning

Richmond County School System located in Augusta, GA kicked off their journey with Modern Teacher this week. The energy and excitement was felt throughout the room as RCSS envisioned Modern Learning for all students across Richmond County. 

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What might a Modern Learning classroom look like in RCSS? 

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Through the Affinity Process teams came up with what they should see in a Modern Learning Environment. 

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Power Voting on which of the topics  are most important in a Modern Learning Environment. 

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Drafting a RCSS Theory of Action. 

Highlights from Community Twitter Chat

Informed by some of the latest work and research from innovators who are rethinking the traditional school model, the Digital Convergence Framework was recently expanded to include the Community Driver. 

The Success Indicators within the Community Driver of the Digital Convergence Framework provide a blueprint for us as leaders to a) expand stakeholder engagement in the future of learning, and b) reach beyond the physical classroom to deliver modern, real-world competencies — connecting each student's unique skills and interests with opportunities to be successful in the workforce. 

Q1: Have you defined a Portrait of a Graduate (PoG) and updated the skills students need to be successful post-graduation? What skills did your community define?

Q2: If you have a Portrait of a Graduate, how has it impacted shifts in instruction and student experiences?

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Q3: How are you thinking about (or are you currently) assessing and identifying student strengths & interests?

Q4: Do you feel that identifying strengths & interests is important for student success? How does or would this information benefit students and teachers?

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Q5: In what ways do students in your district currently expand their networks to connect within your local community? How can we as leaders foster these connections and create opportunities for real-world experiences?

Welcome Little Falls Community Schools

Little Falls Community Schools in Little Falls, Minnesota began their journey with Modern Teacher this week. A strong foundation of innovation and high collegiality among the team was evident throughout our day’s work as well as in the classrooms I was able to visit. There is a strong sense of community presence and district pride for all schools in Little Falls. Be looking for Little Falls Community Schools to take off and fly high. #flyerpride

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Creating visions for the Modern Learning classroom. 

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In deep discussion regarding what society’s global ask is versus what the Little Fall community’s ask is. 

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Creating a vision statement for the Modern Learning environment.

Digital Convergence in J.O. Combs Unified School District

J.O. Combs Unified School District in San Tan Valley, Arizona, has been selected as the NCDC2020 National Showcase District.

J.O. Combs Unified School District in San Tan Valley, Arizona, has been selected as the NCDC2020 National Showcase District.

The JO Combs Digital Convergence Steering Committee is comprised of district and school based leadership.  Together, they have personalized Digital Convergence, branded #Forward,  to meet the needs of their growing community of stakeholders.  All teachers in JO Combs Unified began their professional learning journey in May of 2018 by growing their awareness and understanding of Nurturing Combs classrooms to sustain a learning environment that encourages students to change, grow, and improve through taking risks in learning.  This professional learning goal is aligned to the first component of their Instructional Model - Nurturing Culture.  The focus on creating a learner centered culture, procedures to support this culture, and the adaptation of their physical learning environments to support this vision set the stage for classroom practice to be impacted, teachers were ready and prepared with the knowledge necessary to make changes.  Now, teachers are focusing on turning that awareness into practice by implementing these concepts into classroom practice.

Principals, coaches, and teachers prepare to unpack standards with students

Principals, coaches, and teachers prepare to unpack standards with students

Developing “I can” statements starts with determining what students are able to do at the level of the standard.  

Developing “I can” statements starts with determining what students are able to do at the level of the standard.  

The district’s innovative approach to Professional Learning to create a workforce proficient in the modern learning environment, and their formative approach to the Digital Convergence methodology is indeed #Forward thinking.

J.O. Combs administration, teaching staff, and students invite you to then for the pre-conference visit to J.O. Combs Unified the day before the 2020 National Conference on Digital Convergence held in Phoenix, Arizona on February 3, 2020.

Gresham Barlow - Leading Convergence in the Pacific Northwest

On March 14, 2019, District and School-Based Leadership began to align the Gresham Barlow district vision to school based work related to the district’s Portrait of a Graduate, (POG,) and Convergence work.

Dr. Katrise Perera shares the message and urgency of empowering and inspiring all learners at Gresham Barlow

Dr. Katrise Perera shares the message and urgency of empowering and inspiring all learners at Gresham Barlow

An important step in this process is realizing the need to be trained on handling change effectively.  Teachers will be expected to effectively employ new workforce proficiencies aimed toward developing POG content, skills and dispositions in their students.  For many, this will be a change in practices and pedagogies currently being used in classrooms.  GBSD leaders were introduced to a variety of culture conversations aimed at communicating the importance and necessity of the changes resulting from a modern learning environment and the newly developed Portrait of a Graduate.  These culture conversations will lay the groundwork for the upcoming Convergence work and allow for dialogue and movement through the 3 phases of transition based on William Bridges work on Change and Transitions:

Phase 1:  Ending, Losing, and Letting Go

Phase 2:  The Neutral Zone

Phase 3:  The New Beginning

Leaders working in Culture Conversation Through the Decades

Leaders working in Culture Conversation Through the Decades

Convergence and actualizing a modern learning environment isn’t for the faint of heart. A big congratulations goes out to the Gresham Barlow team for leading this work in the Pacific Northwest.  Follow the Gresham Barlow journey in the National Network page within the platform. 

What Digital Convergence Means for Kershaw County School District, SC

Mirroring the flexible design of work environments — encouraging teamwork & Collaboration

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Kershaw County School District is a twenty-school public school district serving over 10,000 students and 1,200 faculty in Kershaw County, South Carolina. The district, led by Superintendent Dr. Shane Robbins, is one of Modern Teacher’s newest National Network members that has joined the movement to modernize learning at scale and deliver to our students the competencies they need to thrive.

Dr. Robbins recently explained what Digital Convergence means for Kershaw County School District and its students, describing the imperative shift in our instructional practices to “better reflect what students will experience once they graduate from high school.”