Consider Joining Year Two of the Strategic Change Accelerator!

November 8, 2018

Is your school contemplating a significant change in the year ahead?  Is your team prepared with the skills and processes to make sure that change is well-designed?  That your community stakeholders have had input and are on board?  That you have the knowledge base to move forward with a set of first prototypes and pilots,…

Harrisburg Schools Pt. 3: Personalized Learning in the Middle and High Schools

October 31, 2018

In the last week I have posted two blogs about Harrisburg School District in South Dakota, where they are implementing a remarkable program of personalized learning. Here is the final of three posts; focusing here on the evolving program in the middle and high schools. For more details, look at Travis Lape’s blog: Students in…

Personalized Learning Harrisburg, S. Dakota, Pt 2: The Elementary Schools

October 29, 2018

As I posted in my last blog, the personalized learning tracks in Harrisburg School District south of Sioux Falls, South Dakota, REALLY opened my eyes.  Here is part two of my report: the elementary schools. The personalized learning cohorts in Harrisburg elementary schools combine all student in grades 2-5.  In the areas of math and…

Harrisburg School Pt. 1: Setting a New High Bar

October 26, 2018

“I have been teaching for 14 years”, veteran elementary teacher Dana Honner told me yesterday, “and I always thought I really knew my students as individual learners.  I was totally wrong.  In the few months that I have been teaching in this system of truly personalized learning, I finally actually know each of my students…

#EdJourney Pine Ridge, Pt. 3: Listening

October 25, 2018

I have spent several days asking questions and listening, but mostly trying really hard to listen.  It is not my natural mode of human interaction; I have always been opinionated and quick to find and solve a problem.  Spending time in a place where problems lie in all directions, my natural tendency is to propose…

Special Challenges of Small Districts in Rural America

October 23, 2018

What does education innovation mean in a small, rural town in the vast ranch and farm lands of western North America?  What are the goals and objectives of families in these areas? Are they the same or different from families in urban and suburban America? Specifically, if the reason we should be transforming school is…

#EdJourney Pine Ridge, Pt. 3: The Power of Storytellers

October 22, 2018

After a long drive today, I stopped to pay my respects at the Wounded Knee Memorial.  I was the only visitor there, so immediately gathered several locals selling crafts. I suggested I was actually interested in what had happened here, and one young man offered to take me across to the cemetery and tell me…

#EdJourney Pine Ridge Pt 2: Native Youth On the Move

October 22, 2018

Yes, Pine Ridge is the poorest zip code in America; for the rest of the week I will focus on the remarkable work being done here to turn that around! On Friday I visited with the team at the Thunder Valley Community Development Corp., a group that started with three people in 2012, and has…

#EdJourney Pine Ridge, Pt. 1: The American Genocide

October 20, 2018

If you are reading this, are of European descent, and your ancestors arrived on this continent more than three or four generations ago, it is almost a certainty that they perpetrated, were complicit in, or turned a blind eye on, one of the great genocides in human history.  Pretty much right at the time of…

Follow My Mini-EdJourney in South Dakota

October 16, 2018

Can we call ourselves Americans if we either don’t know, or forget about, the original Americans?  Are we the most we can be if we neglect those with the least?  Follow and share over the next week or so, as I go to South Dakota and spend time with the educators, leaders, and (hopefully) students…

The Opportunity Atlas and the American Dream

October 6, 2018

There is no American Dream without the possibility of upward economic mobility. Education is, at its core, about preparing young people to succeed in a life to which they aspire, which is almost always at least as fruitful, if not more so, than that of their parents. Today, that dream is more remote for more…

New Podcast: Reimagine Schools

October 5, 2018

For those of you, and your team members, who enjoy audio podcasts in your professional learning, please share this 20 minute discussion I had with Dr. Greg Goin of Georgetown University (KY). Greg’s popular podcast, Reimagine Schools, has featured a long list of education rock-movers like Ted Dintersmith and Tony Wagner, so I am honored…

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