Lexington Institute Announces First Personalized Learning Leadership Fellowship in the Country

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The Lexington Institute welcomes ten Superintendents to spend six months working together, and with technical assistance providers, to develop a strong vision and plan for implementing personalized learning in their districts.

At the end of the day it's about finding new and innovative ways for teachers to facilitate learning opportunities in which all students are engaged, enriched, and achieving at high levels.

The Lexington Institute, a non-profit public policy think tank focused on education reform, is excited to announce that ten outstanding leaders from across the country have been accepted into the first Lexington Education Leadership Award (LELA) Fellowship. The LELA fellowship is an exciting and highly selective 6-month program designed to expose district superintendents to personalized learning and facilitate the first steps to implementation.

The first fellowship class was selected from over 50 applicants representing districts of all sizes from across the country. Selected leaders include: Theron Schutte from Bettendorf Community School District (IA), Dr. Victor P. Hayek from Bridgewater-Raritan Regional (NJ), Rich Merlo from Corcoran Unified School District (CA), Dr. Ross Kasun from Freehold Township (NJ), Christine Lay from Gettysburg Area (PA), Nancy Allen-Mastro from Independent School District 197 (MN), Gabe Soumakian from Oxnard Union High School District (CA), John F. Albrecht from Wayne-Westland Community Schools (MI), Blane McCann from Westside Community Schools (NE) and Michael S. Kuhrt from Wichita Falls ISD (TX).

Chosen for the strength of their vision, the existence of key conditions for success and their passion to implement personalized learning, the Lexington Institute is excited about the large scale impact. Through this fellowship over 100,000 students and 10,000 teachers and leaders will experience learning intended to meet their needs.

“We are honored to work with such a distinguished group of leaders,” said Don Soifer, Executive Director of the Lexington Institute. “It is wonderful to have the opportunity to support them as they transform their districts.”

The LELA fellowship is an immersive experience to support each district’s vision for personalized learning as well as resources to create a strategic framework for implementation. It kicks off with a specialized track at the Education Elements’ National PL Summit with school visits, access to district leaders in the field discussing their work, as well as key personalized learning thought leaders sharing perspectives. (May 7-8, 2015 San Jose, CA). Leaders will also receive technical assistance and strategic resources and support to develop a custom PL Framework and access to the online LELA Community of Practice forum. The fellowship culminates with a celebration dinner and awards ceremony in Washington DC for LELA Fellows with nationally recognized Personalized Learning Speakers.

LELA fellows will be paired up with experienced personalized learning mentors giving their time to support new superintendents to strategize and implement a successful roll-out. We are honored to have experienced and thoughtful mentors such as Cindy Ambrose, James Bailey and Ken Eastwood. Cindy Ambrose, CAO of Horry County Schools in South Carolina currently oversees a transition to personalization ultimately impacting 40,000 students. Dr. James Bailey, superintendent of Uinta County Schools in Wyoming as well Wyoming Association of State Administration president, is moving his whole district to personalized learning. Finally, Ken Eastwood, at Race to the Top district Middletown, New York, is leading an opt-in personalized learning strategy in which most of his elementary teachers have opted in to this innovative style of teaching.

“I'm honored and excited to have been selected as a LELA fellow in the coming year,” said Dr. Theron J. Schutte, Superintendent of Bettendorf CSD in Iowa. “This opportunity will enable me to learn, develop, and grow my leadership skills through networking with colleagues, visiting high performing schools and companies; as well as, listening to experts in the personalized learning and technology fields. At the end of the day it's about finding new and innovative ways for teachers to facilitate learning opportunities in which all students are engaged, enriched, and achieving at high levels.”

Applications for the next class of LELA fellows will open in September 2015 for a November 2015 launch. Please email lela(at)lexingtoninstitute(dot)org to be added to a notification list.

About Lexington Institute: The Lexington Institute is a nonprofit, nonpartisan public policy think headquartered in Arlington, Virginia. Founded in 1998, its major areas of focus include education, national security, energy and logistics. Please visit lexingtoninstitute.org/category/education/ to learn more.

About Education Elements: Education Elements is a nationally recognized company that helps districts develop and implement personalized learning strategies. Ed Elements' services help districts to create strategies, design instructional models and support teachers in integrating technology and instruction. Our platform provides students, teachers, and administrators each with a single entry point to access digital content and the detailed performance data they need to guide instruction and learning. This innovative cloud service offers simple and accessible data visualizations with actionable insights for users of all types. Education Elements has worked with over 100 schools across 40+ districts in the US; more than any other company. Please visit http://www.edelements.com to learn more.

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