This time of year is full of hope. Kids are excited for school and hoping they will get the best teachers and be with their best friends. Teachers are excited and hoping that this year their students will achieve great things and be more engaged than the year before. And leaders are hoping that the hard work that they are putting in against their strategic plans and initiatives will pay off with successful students and satisfied staff. At Education Elements we are not only hopeful for what is to come, but also thrilled to announce that across districts we supported last year, their hopes were realized and everyone did have a great year. Our 2016-17 Impact Report, released just this morning, tells the story of what happened, who did it, and how so many districts had such a great year. Check out highlights below and read the whole report here.
We continue to see the cumulative benefit of personalized learning over time. Just a few examples from the report:
In Middletown City School District, NY, 65% of all Middletown K-8 students hit their reading growth targets, an increase of 21% since 2013-2014; 67% hit their math growth targets, an increase of 23%.
In Horry County Schools, SC 57% of 6-8 grade students hit reading growth targets, an increase of 7% since 2013-2014; 64% hit math growth targets, an increase of 17%.
In Piedmont City School District, AL, 72% of students in grades 3-8 tested on target in reading on the ACT compared to 28% in 2014-2015, and 55% tested on target in math compared to 35% in 2014-2015.
Across our district partners, leaders are seeing changes in teacher practice and student engagement. Since their districts started personalized learning, 92% of district leaders say that teachers are more effective and 90% say that students are more engaged in their learning.
Overcoming Challenges and Going Beyond Personalized Learning
Our work this year helping to build dynamic school systems has spanned Competency-Based Education, new school design, Open Education Resource adoption and more, and we’ve helped districts solve their biggest problems: from increasing enrollment to maximizing tech investments to increasing student engagement.
The support we provide goes beyond any individual project. A full 99% of district leaders said they consider us to be trusted advisors. Which is good news because we believe that for students to see the benefits, a whole systems approach is necessary and we love providing support across multiple areas.
We also help districts become more responsive organizations, changing the way districts operate and improving the relationship between districts and schools. Since beginning work with us, 68% of district leaders say their district meetings are more effective, 56% report more positive relationships between the district office and school staff, and 68% say roles and accountabilities are more clear.
This year our Impact Report goes beyond the numbers and focuses on the people. We celebrate the stories of 12 superheroes - teachers and leaders - from 9 districts and 2 BOCES because in the end, it is the people and their passion that makes change successful. It was hard to pick just 12 across the over 600 schools and 120 districts, but we hope their stories inspire you to see what’s possible, even without the capes.
We are so proud to be part of a movement to transform education, to have the opportunity to solve the biggest challenges district leaders face, and to support students in reaching their potential. Check out our report to read our reflections and see why we are approaching this year with hope that once again, students’ lives will be changed for the better as a result of our partnerships with districts.
About Amy Jenkins
Amy is a Managing Partner, COO and optimist. A former teacher, she wants to help every student, teacher and district succeed.