New guide to innovative school models aims to encourage experiment

New guide to innovative school models aims to encourage experiment

There is a greater desire to experiment with new educational models as schools try to adapt to the social and emotional needs of students returning from the pandemic lockdowns and other upheavals of the past few years.

But before schools can try out new models, schools must know what’s out there.

A new online library called Exchange innovative modelsThe exchange — which was developed by the non-profit Transcend Education with funding from the Gates Foundation — allows schools to search through a database of “innovative” models that Transcend says are ready. for schools to adopt.

The nonprofit hopes the database will transform the education system.

For more than a century, the American education system has been based on the same educational model, says Jenny Henry Wood, Head of Learning at Transcend. Wood says this model does not lend itself to alternatives.

Transcend sees its mission as replacing this model, working against a one-size-fits-all approach in American schools. What is needed, the group argues, is a set of new models that enable schools to innovate.

Investigating new models of education usually requires the school to have the right connections – so you know other schools are trying to find new ways to learn – as well as the financial resources and time to travel to those schools.

Transcend argues that having an online database will allow schools to be more exploratory.

The exchange currently offers 36 forms that have been vetted by the non-profit organization. Examples include whole child learning models, blended learning models, and high-dose tutoring models. For each, there is an overview of the model, along with notes on the model’s design, current support for schools looking to implement the model and why Transcend considers it innovative, among other information.

Ultimately, the nonprofit hopes the exchange will speed up the adoption and development of attempts to transform education by making it cheaper and easier to explore.

high dose lessons

“Schools, typically, in this country, don’t have enough of a culture of innovation. We have an opportunity to create that now,” says Alan Safran, CEO of Saga Education, a high-dose educational nonprofit.

High dose teaching – a form of intensive tutoring for small groups – is one area of ​​innovation collected in the Transcend exchange programme, and Saga Education is one of the distinctive models in that group.

Proponents of this approach say that high-dose tutoring would help with the literacy crisis and would also help ease the burden on overworked teachers. But it took time for the counties to hear them.

Few schools have ever adopted teaching models until this year, when more than 40 percent of the districts They said they plan to spend some money on teachingSafran says. But, even though many school districts have earmarked federal relief dollars for tutoring, some of that money may be directed toward less-tested methods of tutoring, such as 24/7 online tutoring, which Safran warns.

He says it’s also important to go through the teaching paradigms correctly. While some areas may be eager to rush in these days, Safran says it’s best to introduce tutoring slowly — starting on a small scale — if it is going to bring about system-wide change.

Safran sees the new exchange as a tool to promote evidence-based lessons.

Safran says that platforms such as the exchange model make it easier for district leaders to connect with programs that have already been vetted.

“It’s a door that opens for us, which is important when there’s a lot of noise,” Safran says.

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