18 schools and educators dedicated to learning


The eSchool News K-12 Hero Awards acknowledge the devoted efforts of schooling professionals throughout Okay-12 departments, together with IT, curriculum, instruction and administration. 

Sponsored this 12 months by JAR Systems and SAP Concur, this system obtained an inflow of inspiring nominations that spotlight the innovation and selflessness of educators in colleges and districts throughout the nation.

Listed right here within the order by which their nominations have been obtained are program finalists. Keep tuned, as a result of the second group of finalists might be featured on eSchool Information subsequent week!

Leap to: Christopher Columbus High School, Arlington Independent School District, Becky Alexander, Carmen Alvarez, Chris Moore, District 49, Dr. Elizabeth Faison, Dr. Nick Migliorino, Ed Kemnitzer, Emily Herring, FlexPoint Education Cloud, Florida Virtual Schools, Cory Hocker, Green Bay Area Public Schools, Hardee County School District, Heather Magill, Hemet Unified School District, Jefferson County Public Schools

Nominee: Alex Seage, Christopher Columbus High School             
Nominated by: Samsung Electronics America      

Alex Seage constructed a profession main expertise and innovation within the cruise business, which additionally supplied him with a deep understanding of the expertise wanted to enhance the expertise for cruise visitors. In January 2021, Seage determined it was time to leap into the schooling area, leveraging the talents he acquired to make a distinction at his alma mater, Christopher Columbus Excessive College. With the purpose of modernizing the college’s IT infrastructure for the ever-evolving pandemic period, Seage joined CCHS as a Senior Director of Know-how and Innovation.

CCHS is a non-public, Roman Catholic, college-preparatory highschool, carried out by the Marist Brothers within the Westchester census-designated place of Miami Dade County, Florida. When onboarding, Seage noticed firsthand how lecturers have been beneath nice stress as they struggled to create essential engagement and guarantee college students weren’t feeling left behind within the classroom. At that second, a top-down method to create a “Campus of the Future” was devised by adopting sensible signage inside lecture halls, hallways, athletic services, and government convention rooms to rework the complete campus. Underneath his management, CCHS was one of many first colleges to implement Samsung’s Flip 3 whiteboard in 2021. Samsung’s Interactive Whiteboard was prepared out-of-the-box and was an easy-to-use product for educators to simply present customized experiences. Seamless integration with lecturers’ schooling platforms helped to immerse college students of their studying materials.

As CCHS launched this product to the campus, college have been in a position to learn the way their lecturers needed to include collaborative experiences utilizing expertise and content-driven media that could possibly be delivered in a fast and significant method to carry college students’ curiosity. The employees now makes use of the interactive show to create and current lesson plans and share content material with college students using their very own tablets. Academics have additionally expressed optimistic suggestions utilizing the expertise, underscoring the way it led to extra collaborative studying experiences for college kids. The power to supply two-way communication and collaboration between college students and lecturers is not a pipe dream – by Seage using Samsung’s merchandise, CCHS was in a position to present the expertise and infrastructure to make this dream a actuality.

The optimistic ends in the classroom have led to different enlargement alternatives throughout the CCHS campus. The college not too long ago constructed a brand new heart for science and humanities outfitted with new, cutting-edge Samsung options that present a great area for college kids to foster STEM expertise, similar to important considering, communication, and creativity. Moreover, Seage has put ahead artistic concepts to implement Samsung expertise past the classroom, together with a manufacturing studio, wayfinding, and even integrating the expertise into the college’s sports activities program.  

Seage has performed an instrumental function in remodeling an odd campus into one that really embraces the which means of being “sensible.” He has efficiently constructed the structure for a linked campus that enhances the campus expertise, drives operational effectivity, and offers schooling in a fashion that each one can entry. And for Seage, the perfect has but to return.    

Nominee: Arlington Independent School District                                                            
Nominated by: Identity Automation

Arlington Impartial College District (AISD) has a inhabitants of greater than 61,000 college students. With a highly-engaged college and array of studying alternatives that foster every pupil’s distinctive pursuits and skills, the district’s purpose is to have 100% of AISD college students graduate exceptionally ready for school, profession and citizenship. The district seamlessly combines the energy of a giant faculty district with revolutionary approaches and centered assist to assist college students articulate and obtain their desires.

Arlington ISD has all the time been forward-thinking relating to its district expertise technique, and the district’s Assistant Superintendent of Know-how, Eric Upchurch, has been the driving power behind a lot of its innovation. The district’s capability to shortly and effectively provide units to college students, guarantee distant entry, and supply academic assets is a mannequin different districts can observe.

When the pandemic began, Upchurch knew this is able to completely change how college students study. The problem was how you can shortly adapt to the circumstances and ensure all college students within the district had simple, reasonably priced, and fast entry to the applied sciences wanted to succeed all through the college 12 months and in years to return.

Led by Upchurch, the expertise crew coordinated throughout district departments to make sure a speedy roll-out of 1:1 units. Whether or not it was collaborating in device-day pickup or internet hosting and coordinating meet-the-teacher drive-throughs, the complete district employees stepped as much as present for almost 61,000 college students.

Web hotspots have been additionally arrange so the 1000’s of scholars who in any other case wouldn’t have web might keep classroom entry and make sure the persevering with fairness in schooling.

“It’s actually been unimaginable,” stated Upchurch. “The employees has labored actually exhausting to get by this. The campus expertise folks, the assistant principals, faculty employees, it’s been a giant process. They’ve performed an incredible job.”

Moreover, Upchurch is continually searching for revolutionary new applied sciences that may assist the district. His crew likes to beta take a look at new applied sciences to discover the advantages for all of their finish customers, together with safety applied sciences that assist preserve the district secure.

Arlington ISD has additionally made a giant push in its Know-how Enrichment program. This system provides college students expertise expertise that may lead them into the long run. This contains entry to the newest expertise functions that may have actual world functions. The district additionally holds a number of occasions inviting employees to find out about expertise instruments and methods for the classroom.

Arlington Impartial College District is an edtech integration chief each districtwide and within the classroom, and different districts can look to AISD for inspiration. Finally, from Upchurch and the expertise crew to management districtwide, AISD is aware of how essential expertise is in immediately’s studying atmosphere and needs each pupil to have the identical alternative to achieve success.

Nominee: Hyperlink Textual contentBecky Alexander, Morris Elementary
Nominated by: Istation 

Becky Alexander is the principal at Morris Elementary College in Morris, Oklahoma. She has impressed change on the faculty by main its college and employees to embrace expertise and enrich their technique towards twenty first century studying. Alexander seeks new alternatives to make use of expertise inside classroom classes commonly. She implements packages like Istation to offer her lecturers a bonus in offering information pushed instruction and robust, efficient interventions.

Alexander evokes an revolutionary method to studying by embedding interventions led by Istation’s evaluation information into the college’s day by day instruction. These interventions make sure that college students are being geared up with the absolute best expertise observe to realize educational development. Consequently, Alexander has seen vital development in her college students.

Impressed by Alexander’s success, educators at Morris Elementary additionally use Istation’s reviews and printable assets to advertise educational development in studying and math. With dependable, actionable information, educators at Morris Elementary are in a position to present focused instruction. Moreover, pupil motivation is excessive, as they can monitor their month-to-month development and have a good time successes. On account of these successes, Alexander offered at The Cooperative Council for Oklahoma College Directors Convention on the effectiveness of this intervention, inspiring educators state-wide to observe her lead.

Alexander continues her dedication to bettering the tutorial neighborhood by being an energetic member of Istation’s Crimson Cape Neighborhood, which permits her to collaborate with educators nationwide on greatest practices, and supply suggestions straight with Istation on the classroom wants of educators.

Nominee: Hyperlink Textual contentCarmen Alvarez, Harlingen Consolidated Independent School District  
Nominated by: Age of Learning  

Ms. Alvarez is the Early Studying Director for Harlingen Consolidated Impartial College District (HCISD), a couple of miles from the U.S./Mexico border. The district serves an economically-disadvantaged neighborhood with about 80 % of the scholars eligible to take part within the free and reduced-price meal program. In fall 2020, 61 % of kids in prekindergarten have been labeled as academically “in danger” and he or she has witnessed the influence a scarcity of readiness for kindergarten and past has on college students. Subsequently, Ms. Alvarez and her colleagues regarded for tactics to resolve that problem.

Within the fall of 2019, HCISD launched a common full-day pre-Okay program for 4-year-old youngsters without charge to households. Affordability is the primary deterrent to enrolling in pre-Okay, in order that they devoted the assets to make it accessible to everybody locally. By means of this program, HCISD started to instill a powerful basis in literacy and math in these younger learners.

Shortly after this system began, COVID-19 pressured the district to rethink the way it might academically assist the pre-Okay college students. Whereas distant studying was tough for all, the youngest learners confronted notably acute challenges when in-school studying was not potential. The precedence was to make sure that district closures wouldn’t negatively influence pre-Okay college students’ educational development and improvement.

Underneath Ms. Alverez’s management, pre-Okay lessons started utilizing an adaptive, mastery-based math program, My Math Academy, to strengthen younger learners’ foundational math information, and encourage their love of studying. Moreover, as a consequence of distant studying, Alvarez turned to the expertise resolution to equip educators with insights and instruments to personalize and speed up studying at-home and within the classroom.

HCISD lecturers shortly noticed optimistic adjustments in how college students have been constructing math expertise. The pre-Okay college students utilizing My Math Academy throughout the 2020-2021 faculty 12 months almost tripled their talent ranges, whereas kindergarteners collaborating in this system elevated their talent ranges by 50 %. And maybe most impactful is that as a consequence of learner variability, every pupil was at a unique start line in studying, but each pupil mastered all pre-Okay expertise and continued nicely into kindergarten. HCISD even had youngsters coming into kindergarten the next 12 months studying math at a second-grade stage!

Based mostly on the overwhelmingly optimistic outcomes, HCISD expanded the usage of My Math Academy and commenced a pilot of My Studying Academy, an adaptive, standards-aligned studying resolution. The district is already seeing improved studying expertise amongst college students, and so they have grow to be extra assured, engaged readers. 

District officers anticipated the extraordinary challenges from the pandemic would drastically enhance the variety of college students falling behind of their studying. Nonetheless, greater than 850 youngsters enrolled in HCISD’s common pre-Okay program, and HCISD college students are actually performing higher on math and studying in comparison with cohorts in earlier years, and their math outcomes are above the nationwide common. Ms. Alvarez and her colleagues have been on the forefront of growing distinctive academic experiences for his or her youngest learners and adopting evidence-based practices–by implementing My Math Academy and My Studying Academy–to make sure expertise was positively impacting instructor engagement and driving pupil outcomes.

Nominee: Hyperlink Textual contentChris Moore, Salem-Keizer Public Schools                                                     
Nominated by: EmpowerU, Inc. 

Chris Moore is a heart-centered chief who works tirelessly to assist the wants of all employees and college students. He’s deliberately and strategically centered on increasing entry to efficient social-emotional and psychological well being assist holistically all through the district–an enormous enterprise in a district of 40,000 college students.

Chris is extraordinarily considerate in his collection of partnerships and is all the time considering strategically about how the packages and helps he implements will match into the larger image of driving complete youngster success. He’s collaborative along with his companions and his faculty websites, making the correct connections on the proper time, leading to built-in program implementation to leverage the best influence and drive huge outcomes.

Chris helps his faculty websites, employees, and college students faucet into their highest potential every single day by assembly them the place they’re with perception in them and unconditional optimistic regards–connecting them with assets like EmpowerU and dealing with them to establish the place and the way EmpowerU packages can greatest assist their distinctive wants and challenges.

Nominee: District 49      
Nominated by: LearnPlatform    

The variety of digital instruments utilized by districts quickly accelerated throughout the pandemic as colleges transitioned to distant studying, inflicting challenges for each lecturers and directors. Leaders at District 49 (D49), considered one of Colorado’s fastest-growing districts, knew they wanted to work collaboratively to make sure that the schooling expertise instruments used throughout their system have been delivering worth for college kids and lecturers and that they have been doing so safely.

The district serves roughly 21,000 college students throughout 4 distinct zones spanning 133 sq. miles of city and rural areas in Colorado. D49 is dedicated to offering college students high-quality expertise alternatives and giving lecturers the instruments they should assist all college students obtain desired outcomes. Colorado distributors and faculty districts are required by the state to facilitate secure on-line studying experiences.

To higher perceive edtech use throughout the district’s system, the district’s tech crew arrange a district Stock Dashboard, supplied free from LearnPlatform. Inside days, they realized that college students and lecturers have been utilizing greater than 2,000 edtech instruments systemwide. They knew they wanted to determine clear processes for managing this quantity of edtech use successfully.

Particularly, they needed to have the ability to encourage constant practices throughout faculty buildings, guarantee compliance with Colorado’s pupil information privateness necessities, scale back frustration and confusion amongst stakeholders (together with dad and mom and employees), and start to guage the influence of edtech on pupil outcomes. On the similar time, they needed to take care of native decision-making autonomy amongst their 4 zones.

Whereas a number of district-wide groups, together with Studying Companies, Buying, and Knowledge and Efficiency, labored collectively to establish and choose LearnPlatform to assist them obtain their objectives, Melissa Riggs, D49 Training Know-how Specialist inside the Studying Companies crew, in the end led the LearnPlatform implementation.

She and her crew have labored carefully with the LearnPlatform crew to:

  • Create a district library of their high edtech instruments
  • Maintain stakeholders (lecturers, employees, and fogeys/guardians) knowledgeable of the approval and privateness statuses for these instruments
  • Set up a clearly outlined, environment friendly course of for requesting and reviewing new edtech product requests to make sure curricular alignment, technical compatibility, and information privateness compliance
  • Consider product utilization, price, and pupil achievement to higher perceive how nicely key edtech merchandise are working for all D49 college students
  • Scale back the monetary and human prices related to managing and vetting edtech instruments
  • Make it simpler for lecturers to seek out and choose edtech merchandise to make use of of their lecture rooms

D49’s considerate rollout of LearnPlatform, led by Melissa, has made D49’s use of edtech extra manageable, considerate, and constant; ensured compliance with state pupil information privateness rules; and optimized security. Concurrently by her management, she’s been profitable in decreasing the workload on lecturers and employees and has improved district worth from edtech expenditures, all with out interfering with native choice making.

Nominee: Dr. Elizabeth Faison, Prince George’s County Public Schools     
Nominated by: AllHere  

We’re nominating Dr. Elizabeth Faison, Affiliate Superintendent of Scholar Companies at Prince George’s County Public Colleges (PGCPS), for main a clear, trustworthy, and considerate interrogation of what stands in the way in which of genuine partnerships between households and colleges. PGCPS’ concentrate on transformational practices has led to the district’s quest for revolutionary approaches to eradicating boundaries to pupil success.

Dr. Elizabeth Faison has held management positions for over 16 years at PGCPS, one of many nation’s largest faculty districts with 208 colleges and greater than 136,500 college students in Maryland. As Affiliate Superintendent of Scholar Companies, Elizabeth ensures PGCPS’s various pupil inhabitants receives holistic assist that features faculty well being, psychological well being, psychological companies, homeless, house and hospital educating, house education, restorative approaches, worldwide admissions, bullying prevention, and attendance.

Because the hole between house and faculty widened throughout the pandemic, Elizabeth led the funding of packages that guarantee each household in her district receives the assist they want by establishing new touchpoints that attain college students and households wherever they’re. This contains the adoption of AllHere, a 24/7 texting-based chatbot that gives customized assist so that each household can get questions answered inside seconds or be escalated to a assist employees member inside the district. When it was time to reopen for in-person studying, the district used AllHere to supply well timed, empathetic nudges and presents of assist to assist households handle any challenges they may have confronted returning to highschool. This chatbot, affectionately named by college students as J.A.R.V.I.S (Simply A Relatively Very Clever System), allowed PGCPS to additionally present actual time solutions to folks’ inquiries in addition to present college students with a solution to alert the district to non-public crises.

Lately, Elizabeth has spearheaded a district-wide initiative to drive consciousness round attendance, one of many high drivers of pupil success. Continual absenteeism, outlined as lacking greater than 10 % of days in a college 12 months for any motive, has risen to historic ranges throughout the pandemic. Relatively than fall again on outdated, typically punitive attendance intervention methods, Elizabeth has taken essential steps ahead to reimagine attendance methods that acknowledge the distinctive circumstances of every youngster and household.

Historically, faculty absences are assumed to be a results of disinterested households when the true causes extra typically are language boundaries, dad and mom working a number of jobs, and poor web entry, amongst a bunch of different obstacles. During the last decade, household engagement leaders like Elizabeth have championed a shift in how our schooling system treats power absenteeism, from a punitive to an empathetic method that treats households as essential elements to their youngster’s success.

Elizabeth expertly and compassionately convened the district’s attendance process power, bringing collectively households, college students, educators, and policymakers in assist of a high-quality system of helps round attendance and total pupil achievement. Elizabeth’s management in PGCPS reveals the way in which towards a extra liberatory, solidarity-driven, strengths-driven, and equity-focused engagement observe that helps pupil companies excellence for all youngsters.”                                                                                                                                                                                                   

Nominee: Dr. Nick Migliorino, Norman Public Schools
Nominated by: Rave Mobile Safety          

Within the wake of the tragedy in Uvalde, TX earlier this 12 months, faculty directors throughout the nation started assessing methods to guard college students. Elected officers additionally began doubling down on security measures, together with the Governor of Oklahoma, who issued a statewide mandate this summer time requiring greater than 1,800 public Okay-12 and constitution colleges within the state to implement Rave Panic Button by September 1. Oklahoma shouldn’t be new to Rave Panic Button – the state is arising on its third 12 months of working with Rave to guard college students and employees.

Dr. Nick Migliorino, superintendent of Norman Public Colleges, has been the catalyst for college security expertise in Oklahoma for years and continues to maintain the security of scholars and employees on the high of his priorities immediately.

In 1999, he was awarded the Governor’s Humanitarian Award for his service to college students throughout the Might 3, 1999 twister that broken Westmoore Excessive College. Since then, he has had a protracted and profitable profession, taking over more difficult roles alongside the way in which, in the end changing into the superintendent of Norman Public Colleges in 2017. Earlier than taking over his present place, Migliorino served as the college’s Assistant Superintendent for Administrative Companies and Chief Know-how Officer, which entailed overseeing all technical elements of the district. On this capability, Migliorino labored with the district’s technical companies employees, web site lecturers, leaders, and different exterior stakeholders to increase the district’s use of technological assets. As a part of this work, he additionally oversaw bond initiatives and managed the district’s upkeep, transportation, youngster vitamin well being, and expertise divisions.

A agency believer in the truth that expertise could make a distinction within the ways in which colleges join and defend college students, Migliorino co-founded College Join, an organization that supplied a web-based platform for colleges to create their very own mobile-messaging functions. The corporate was offered to Jostens, Inc. in 2012 and the platform continues to serve districts throughout the nation as College Means.

Dr. Migliorino labored tirelessly to make sure that Norman Public Colleges was amongst one of many first Oklahoma faculty districts to make use of the Rave Panic Button software, a college security app that, with the push of a button, sends essential data to 9-1-1 facilities, on-site personnel, and first responders within the occasion of an emergency. Norman Public Colleges carried out Rave Panic Button earlier than Governor Kevin Stitt declared the manager order and served as a useful resource to many different districts who had questions on the advantages of Rave Panic Button. At present, as of this writing, 92.4 % of Oklahoma colleges have opted in to make use of the Rave Panic Button app, and almost 88 % present as reside customers which suggests faculty personnel have “geo-fenced” their campus, named their buildings, and added some employees into the system.

On the time that Rave turned a college security resolution in Oklahoma, Dr. Migliorino acknowledged, “The security and safety of our college students and employees is our high precedence and I do know the identical is true in each faculty district throughout the state. That is yet one more important instrument we will use to be ready for no matter conditions could come up and to maintain our college students and employees secure.”

Migliorino’s values and imaginative and prescient have helped the Oklahoma faculty system to be the security chief that it’s immediately.

Nominee: Ed Kemnitzer, East Williston Union Free School District
Nominated by: Bluum    

For the reason that latest pandemic and subsequent federal spending relating to expertise instruments within the classroom could be overwhelming to many faculties and their leaders, many faculty directors have clamored for an schooling expertise companion to assist navigate these uneven waters. With the necessity for steerage on what and how you can buy expertise to really assist enhance studying outcomes at an all-time excessive, the corporate Bluum launched Strategic Advisory Planning Companies for its schooling companions this previous 12 months.

It’s a three-phase course of by which the corporate’s expertise and schooling consultants assist faculty districts assess the place there’s a want for edtech and the way they need to implement it into their colleges at little or no price. However as a way to launch companies similar to this, trusted companions and schooling expertise consultants on the colleges are wanted to supply the suggestions essential to make this system actually precious for educators.

That’s the place East Williston Union Free College District Director of Know-how, Innovation and Data Companies Ed Kemnitzer from New York got here in. Ed was one of many early adopters of the service supplied by Bluum and helped pilot this system for eight months. Ed selflessly volunteered his time and vitality to help the Bluum Training Companies Crew with numerous insights in growing these companies for colleges.

Though Ed stated that the expertise was useful to studying extra about what his district wanted as nicely, his information in strategic planning, budgets, working with the college board, federal funding, and different acumen have been invaluable to the Bluum crew as they designed their packages. Ed understands that districts scratch and claw for each expertise greenback of their funds and the counsel he supplied Bluum will permit the corporate to help numerous others in these efforts.               

Nominee: Emily Herring, Fairfield City Schools
Nominated by: EmpowerU, Inc. 

Emily Herring is a champion of scholars!

Emily works tirelessly to assist the wants of all college students–notably college students who’re struggling within the conventional faculty setting and who’ve been temporality transitioned to an Different Studying Web site.

Emily has taken it upon herself to generate grant cash to attach college students on the ALC with EmpowerU to really feel empowered to transition again to their conventional faculty settings with extra resilience and coping expertise.

College students from Emily’s district who take EmpowerU share feeling elevated self-value and confidence.

Emily helps college students faucet into their highest potential every single day by assembly them the place they’re at with perception in them and connecting them with assets like EmpowerU to assist them as a an entire particular person.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

Nominee: FlexPoint Education Cloud
Nominated by: Mary Stevens, Florida Virtual School        

The imaginative and prescient of Florida Digital College (FLVS), a completely accredited on-line Okay-12 public faculty district, has all the time been to rework schooling worldwide. To that finish, FLVS launched FlexPoint Training Cloud, enabling them to companion with colleges and districts across the nation and worldwide to assist them shortly and successfully transition lecturers and college students to on-line studying throughout the COVID-19 pandemic and past.

Within the 2020-21 faculty 12 months, the FlexPoint crew helped greater than 160 new colleges and districts across the nation launch their first on-line studying packages throughout the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic. Plus, to assist educators who have been new to on-line studying throughout, FlexPoint helped practice greater than 14,000 schooling professionals nationwide, equaling greater than 500 hours {of professional} improvement.

In Florida, FLVS noticed success by state testing outcomes and surveys. The 2021 state testing outcomes confirmed that FLVS college students scored 21 % greater in English and 11 % greater in math than the state common. Moreover, FLVS supported Florida colleges and districts by coaching greater than 10,000 lecturers statewide and supplied ongoing assist. 

To assist much more college students, households, and educators across the nation who have been new to on-line studying FLVS launched the On-line Studying Neighborhood (OLC).  OLC gave educators the assets they wanted and provided a web-based neighborhood the place they might ask questions, join with others, and really feel assured as they educated college students in a digital atmosphere. 

Moreover, in response to COVID’s substantial influence on psychological well being, FLVS added almost 50 pupil companies professionals to assist college students and households, offering them with assets, webinars, and trainings to assist them by a time of nice change and stress. 

Throughout the pandemic, FLVS went above and past to assist college students, dad and mom, and educators in Florida and throughout the nation–placing college students on the heart of each choice they made.

Nominee: Florida Virtual Schools             
Nominated by: SAP Concur         

It’s with nice pleasure that SAP Concur nominates Florida Digital College (FLVS) and Kelly Goodman, Expense Administration Supervisor, for the eSchool Information Okay-12 Hero Award.  We consider that Florida Digital is a superb selection for the award as they’ve embraced expertise to grow to be one of many world’s leaders in on-line schooling.

FLVS has been main the way in which in Okay-12 on-line schooling since 1997. They supply a sturdy, award-winning curriculum to public, personal, constitution, and homeschool households and faculty districts nationwide. They’re accredited by Cognia and provide supportive on-line studying to college students each in Florida and all over the world.

FLVS’s 5 core values–Excellence, Innovation, Neighborhood, Stability, and Communication–energize and information its crew members of their day by day pursuits to realize their imaginative and prescient. They lead on-line schooling worldwide with revolutionary digital options that individualize studying for every pupil, and so they equip college students for achievement by growing and delivering extremely efficient digital studying by an intuitive on-line platform. 

Nominee: Cory Hocker, Golden Eagle Charter School
Nominated by: Kajeet    

We’re nominating Cory for his dedication to making sure connectivity for college kids in want throughout the ongoing fireplace seasons in California. Cory ensures their faculty is ready to serve displaced college students in want of connectivity throughout wildfires.

Most not too long ago, whereas experiencing the McKinney Fireplace, he was transferring gear from the purple zone whereas managing connectivity and entry for college kids. Sporting the various hats of an IT Director is difficult sufficient, and Cory goes above and past every year to help college students throughout fireplace season and evacuations, that are unpredictable and could be devastating for college kids when they’re relocated.                                                                                                                        

Nominee: Green Bay Area Public Schools                                         
Nominated by: JAR Systems, LLC                             

JAR Methods has chosen to appoint Inexperienced Bay Space Public Colleges for the Okay-12 Hero Awards as a consequence of its unmatched dedication to pupil success. Inexperienced Bay not too long ago invested in 20,000 Chromebooks to maneuver the district to a 1:1 student-to-device ratio to advance college students’ productiveness and studying in lecture rooms.

Because of the mass enhance of units, the district started to expertise some difficulties with retaining the units charged and prepared for studying. To fight this difficulty, the district bought Adapt4 Charging Stations for its secondary colleges to alleviate the challenges of uncharged units within the lecture rooms. The yellow energy banks included within the Adapt4 Charging Stations allowed college students to cost their units on the desk with out the district needing to change infrastructure or create fireplace/journey hazards with energy cords. In flip, this elevated productiveness and diminished disruptions to studying within the secondary faculty lecture rooms.

Within the district’s elementary colleges, the principle precedence concerned retaining college students’ units charged whereas maximizing area within the lecture rooms. To attain this, Inexperienced Bay took the initiative to buy Important USB-C Charging Stations which can be designed to suit numerous gadget sizes and kinds, which allowed lecturers to maximise area within the classroom. The Important Charging Station will also be wall-mounted, saving much more classroom area in comparison with that of a standard cart and permitting for a great studying atmosphere.

Inexperienced Bay Space Public Colleges not solely took steps in the direction of a 1:1 student-to-device ratio throughout unprecedented occasions, but it surely additionally acknowledged potential disruptions to studying and took the initiative to alleviate these challenges. Inexperienced Bay’s initiatives show its dedication to pupil success by offering an idealistic atmosphere for studying. Throughout an unprecedented time of uncertainty, Inexperienced Bay Space Public Colleges went above and past to coach college students when calls for on colleges and districts have been thought unimaginable. JAR Methods wish to nominate Inexperienced Bay Space Colleges for the Okay-12 Hero Awards to acknowledge its dedication to its college students’ prosperity and studying.    

Nominee: Hardee County School District              
Nominated by: JAR Systems, LLC              

JAR Methods is nominating Hardee College District (FL) for its distinctive response to speedy change in its college students’ and lecturers’ necessities for digital studying. The district serves a various inhabitants in a rural county with many titled authorities packages and a big ESOL program.

The expertise crew, led by Director of Know-how and Data Methods Todd Markel, has carried out a expertise plan that emphasizes equitable studying alternatives and equips college students with the assets wanted to thrive in a world society.

Popping out of the COVID-19 pandemic, they shortly acknowledged that the wiring of AC adapters into their charging stations was holding them again in a number of methods. The wiring and rewiring have been costing the district time and assets and the AC adapters have been higher off used for different functions. In response, they made a major funding in upgrading their charging infrastructure. As a substitute of shopping for all new stations, they have been in a position to leverage those they already had and improve them with Fast-Sense USB-C PD Charging Hubs. This successfully eradicated cable administration duties and created a extra user-friendly expertise for lecturers and college students within the classroom.

The district’s longstanding partnership with JAR Methods helped it towards a path of scalable development and technological development that bolstered its capability to fulfill the wants of its more and more digital curriculum. 


Nominee: Heather Magill, Palm Beach County School District                     
Nominated by: Edmentum           

In relation to educators, pinpointing one single superhero energy is tough as a consequence of how a lot they undertake and execute day by day. Educators put their energies towards making the world just a little bit higher, whether or not or not it’s by a be a world attain or affecting a single pupil. The aim all the time stays—merely assist college students to find their approach. That is precisely the aim Heather Magill embodies.

Ms. Magill challenges her college students to be their greatest self and presents alternatives that may by no means be thought of. She offers a world stuffed with prospects.

Ms. Magill acknowledges that not each youngster involves the desk with equal or expansive experiences and alternatives. To deal with the disparity, she established the muse wanted to create a viable STEM program with holistic values for her faculty. It now presents STEM elective lessons and homes robotics and coding programs that combine science, expertise, engineering, arts, and math into one studying expertise, whereas reinforcing real-world software. With the Superior STEM college students, she focuses on design engineering initiatives centered round NASA’s Rising Past Earth (GBE) trials, the place she guides college students to gather information on potential vegetation that could possibly be used on the Worldwide House Station, in addition to the Stiles Nicholson STEM Inventor 3D print challenges. Utilizing numerous skilled audio system, packages, and digital area journeys, she demonstrates to college students the distinctive alternatives that stretch outdoors of their neighborhood.

Ms. Magill makes use of the method of instruction to get to know her college students, construct neighborhood, and current prospects. She guides her college students to non-public heights of their question-answer-question cycle of discovery. She teaches them how you can be limitless of their considering and to contemplate the unconsidered. She does this whereas sustaining a excessive stage of proficiency and mastery within the classroom. Digital assets like Edmentum’s Examine Island are as a lot part of the method as conferences with NASA and collaboration with PBS.

Ms. Magill makes use of information of her college students to seek out alternatives and outdoors grants to assist the educational on the edges. By partnering with the neighborhood to assist, expose, and create alternative, Ms. Magill finds distinctive studying possibilities for her college students.

These adventures and alternatives work in live performance with educating of requirements and the curriculum of Palm Seaside County SD. She makes use of that information derived from Edmentum’s Examine Island to observe understanding and studying. She teaches her college students to be digital residents in addition to to make use of expertise assets to observe comprehension, carry out important evaluation of content material, and construct self esteem that shortly interprets to educational confidence.

Hear extra about Heather Magill’s Why, her 2020 Dwyer Award, or her work with PBS and advocating for her pupil to take part within the documentary “Hidden Wild.” You can even examine her work with the Environmental Useful resource Administration creating new science curriculum. Or interact in a few of the Digital Subject Journey she has been growing with Palm Seaside County Division of Environmental Assets. The Division started working with Ms. Heather to do digital area journeys for Palm Seaside County college students in April 2020.

Nominee: Hemet Unified School District
Nominated by: Lexia Learning    

Hemet district leaders knew that they had a literacy difficulty when their district information confirmed that solely 16 % of its 22,000 college students in TK-12 have been studying at or above grade stage. And whereas each faculty web site was a bit completely different, it was clear that they have been coping with main entry and fairness points.

It was at this level that the 26-school district created a brand new director of literacy and intervention place, taking the stance that studying intervention was wanted throughout most grades.

Working collectively, the district started to dig in and dive deeper into the basis causes of the issue. Prepared for a change, they began to broaden their understanding of the science of studying and did a ebook research on Shifting the Stability by Jan Burkins and Kari Yates.

Analysis led the district to study extra about and choose Lexia’s Language Necessities for Academics of Studying and Spelling (LETRS) skilled improvement suite. It piqued their curiosity due to its longevity within the market, it was developed by literacy consultants Dr. Louisa Moats, Dr. Carol Tolman, and Dr. Lucy Hart Paulson, and it supplied them with a program that gave lecturers the pliability to study on their very own time in their very own area and from the consolation of their very own house. It additionally introduced them collectively to work collaboratively throughout district roles.

To make sure a profitable overhaul of their skilled improvement platform, district leaders took these steps:

  • Developed a plan of motion. Starting January 1, 2022, the district started providing the skilled improvement curriculum to these lecturers who requested it. It laid out a plan for the primary full 12 months of use and put collectively a scope and sequence {of professional} improvement that might kick off for the 2022-23 faculty 12 months, with the primary unit beginning in March 2022.
  • Use cohorts. District leaders established two completely different cohorts, together with a bunch of 500 “first adopters” out of 1,3000 educators from grades TK-12 that began in March 2022 and a second cohort that began in August 2022.
  • Make it price their whereas. Academics are paid hourly for the time spent finishing the skilled improvement items and attending the workshops. The district additionally presents the platform to its directors, all of whom are collaborating in this system (and, additionally being compensated for that participation).
  • Get everybody onboard. District leaders additionally introduced within the district’s government cupboard, particular schooling program specialists, and different stakeholders into the system. It needed everybody to know that they’re all lecturers of literacy—whether or not they’re educating kindergarten, science class or auto store.

Embracing a Paradigm Shift

Ultimately, there may be an excessive amount of discuss fairness amongst college students, however the place is the fairness for lecturers? And the way are districts offering equitable entry to the science of studying and actually serving to to arrange them and never leaving it to probability?

Hemet USD is a shining instance of working collaboratively to drive a paradigm shift in educating and studying for the sake of its most dear belongings – lecturers and college students.

Nominee: Jefferson County Public Schools
Nominated by: FEV Tutor            

Tutoring has obtained plenty of consideration as a key technique for serving to to stem unfinished studying for Okay-12 college students as a consequence of COVID disruptions and to shut longstanding achievement gaps which have grown even wider throughout the pandemic. Even after heroic efforts by educators to proceed educating remotely, in-person, or by way of hybrid studying fashions, many learners have fallen behind. The impacted college students are, not surprisingly, those who have been underserved earlier than the pandemic: low-income college students, college students with out entry to expertise, particular schooling college students, and English Language Learners.

One city district, Jefferson County Public Colleges (JCPS) in Louisville, Kentucky, was decided to show the tide for its 96,000 college students and launched a partnership with FEV Tutor, the main supplier of on-line, high-dosage tutoring and an ESSA Degree 2 Intervention and Proof-Based mostly Program that obtained the Product Design Certificates by Digital Promise.

Starting in December 2020, the district linked its college students with intentional tutoring–that being ongoing, curriculum and instruction-based, standards-aligned educational assist when and the place they wanted it. The district was in a position to quickly deploy FEV Tutor by implementing swift integrations like Intelligent for rostering, Single Signal On (SSO), and sharing NWEA MAP Progress information for data-driven instruction.

By reshaping its educational assist for college kids utilizing excessive influence tutoring and incorporating the Design Rules for Efficient Tutoring from the famend Annenberg Institute, together with high-frequency and dosage with three or extra session per week, tutoring provided throughout the faculty day, constant tutors, and data-driven for customized instruction, the district was satisfied it was heading in the right direction.

To verify that its efforts have been delivering optimistic outcomes, JCPS activated its NWEA MAP Progress information reference to the tutoring platform and its information analytics crew carried out a Winter-to-Spring AY21-22 educational development evaluation evaluating RIT Rating Progress throughout numerous attendance bands of tutoring participation.

From this intensive but collaborative effort, superb outcomes have been realized:

  • Thus far, greater than 60,000 hours of reside, one-to-one instruction have been delivered to 7,000 college students in 116 JCPS colleges. The web tutoring periods have been out there to college students in grades 3-12 and concentrate on the core topics of math, English, science, and social research.
  • FEV Tutor individuals demonstrated accelerated charges of development relative to non-participants in each math and studying. College students who participated in greater dosages of FEV Tutor confirmed further beneficial properties. College students who participated in really helpful dosages of tutoring demonstrated 78 % accelerated development relative to non-participants in math and 74 % accelerated development relative to non-participating in studying.
  • In all, the district demonstrated accelerated, double-digit charges of development (32 %) relative to nationwide norms in each math and studying on the NWEA MAP Progress Assessments.

It goes with out saying that the true heroes of this story are the scholars who’re making up for the bottom they misplaced over the previous 24+ months. However this ‘excellent news’ story wouldn’t be potential with out the heroic efforts of JCPS district directors and lecturers who proceed to work tirelessly to implement a profitable, high-impact tutoring effort designed for studying acceleration.    

Laura Ascione
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