At Monday night’s board work session, Asst. Superintendent Amy LaDue and her Teaching and Learning team provided an update on recent parent, student, and staff surveys and focus groups around personalized learning, standards-based learning, standards-based grading, and Empower. This has been an ongoing evaluation process as the Teaching and Learning team has continued to evaluate the performance of the tools that support the district’s work in personalized learning.

The results of the most recent feedback loop, which included parent, staff, and student surveys as well as staff and student focus groups – and analysis by an outside, independent consultant – are clear.  There is strong support among all groups for personalized learning.  The parent survey also showed a gap between what families value about personalized learning and the student experience.

The feedback loop also showed ongoing concern with Empower and practices related to standards-based grading. Despite efforts within the district to improve Empower as the tool used to support this learning, the user experience continues to decline and it’s impacting students, parent engagement, and the teacher experience in the classroom.

At the May 20th school board meeting, the team will identify action steps related to Empower and practices related to standards-based grading to better support students, parents, and teachers. The district – and Board – commitment to personalized learning and standards-based learning is unwavering.  Equally important is ensuring that the resources are in place so that both teachers and students can be successful, and parents are able to fully engage in their children’s learning.

Exceptional, personalized learning is the core of Eastern Carver County Schools.  That good and important work happens in classrooms throughout the district every school day.  This shift in tools will better support that work and our students, staff, and parents.  Stay tuned for updates following the next board meeting.