Muskogee, OK (PRWEB) July 23, 2013 -- In a major effort to boost the number of graduates ready to tackle college and careers after high school, the Muskogee Board of Education on Tuesday approved a partnership with the Pearson education company that will help transform how Muskogee students learn.
Muskogee Public Schools soon will get new digital instructional programs, integrated data systems, and intensive teacher professional development as part of the move to digital. Students in 7th through 12th grade classes will transition to digital learning with rigorous and engaging curriculum on HP EliteBook Revolve mobile computing devices replacing printed textbooks midway through the 2013-2014 school year. Current textbooks have been in classrooms over the last decade, but Muskogee’s junior and high school students will see their course materials leap into the digital age.
“The move to digital learning will help us bolster instruction to make school more relevant, more challenging, and more captivating for our students, like never before possible,” Muskogee Public Schools Superintendent Mike Garde said. “The digital conversion will completely transform how Muskogee students learn.”
The district updated its plan for one-to-one conversion in the 2013-2014 school year based on research into best digital learning practices, which have proven highly effective for increasing student engagement and academic achievement, and have raised enrollment at other school districts that have adopted 1:1 initiatives.
“We want the best transition for students, teachers, parents and the community,” Garde said. “Together we will build a digital learning environment best suited for our students’ needs, one that will keep every student engaged and ready for more. Students will get a much more personalized and exciting learning experience in line with 21st century skills and the way the world works now.”
Pearson, which uses its research-based 1:1 Learning Framework in supporting school districts, will help MPS with planning and training to ensure a successful digital transition. This framework has been successful in increasing enrollment and student engagement at other schools around the country.
“The dedicated educators at the Muskogee Public Schools are taking bold steps to provide their community’s future leaders and business builders of tomorrow with the best education possible anywhere, and we’re privileged to support their groundbreaking work,” said Scott Drossos, Senior Vice President of Pearson 1:1 Learning. “Muskogee will be among the communities leading the nation with digital learning to graduate students ready to dive into college studies and 21st century jobs.”
If approved, technology experts will assess and build up the technology network and infrastructure over the next few months at Alice Robertson Junior High, Sadler Arts Academy, Rougher Alternative Academy and Muskogee High School. Teachers from those schools will receive extensive training and support to prepare for the transition and learn how to use innovative digital resources to help students shift to the new Common Core standards.
In addition to boosting rigor and infusing interactive texts, videos, animations and more into lessons, teachers and administrators will be better able to track students’ academic progress and quickly make instructional adjustments to the needs of each student.
As part of the effort to make learning more personalized for each student, Muskogee will integrate all student data into a single environment so each student’s learning progress is readily available for teachers, parents and administrators anytime from anywhere. This real-time data will allow educators to make instructional adjustments to the needs of each learner, while allowing students to constantly monitor their own progress toward meeting their academic requirements.
“The vision is to create a personalized learning environment in which students can chart and monitor their course toward graduation,” said Melony Carey, director of secondary education at Muskogee Public Schools. “Students will use the interactive instructional programs to work together on projects and apply what they learn in and outside of the classroom.”
As part of Muskogee’s move to digital learning, the district will provide students in 7th through 12th grade with a rich digital portfolio of interactive learning programs that its students will be able to take advantage of on their path to graduation including WriteToLearn and Prentice Hall for English language arts and literature; digits, MathXL and MyMathLab for mathematics; myWorld and Prentice Hall for social studies; for science Miller Levine and Online Learning Exchange, an online digital resource with lessons constantly updated with current events and more. Through GradPoint and Connections Learning, virtual classes will help students at risk of dropping out get caught up on coursework and others wanting to get ahead take additional classes.
To help familiarize students and parents with the new digital programs and devices, the district will hold meetings at schools this fall and throughout the school year.
Muskogee students will be able to take home their own secure mobile computing device selected based on the functionality and ease of maintenance needed for interactive instructional programs and robust safety software, including one which will help prevent theft and loss.
The $14 million digital learning initiative will be paid for from bond funds approved by Muskogee voters.
Muskogee Public Schools
918-684-3700 ext. 1635
Melony Carey, Muskogee Public Schools, http://www.mpsi20.org/site/default.aspx?PageID=1, 918-684-3700, [email protected]