Your assignment, should you choose to accept it, is to outline what it takes to get your state or province from 'here' to 'there.' In other words, what would it take to get from our current system of schooling to a robust, province- or statewide system of 21st century learning? Here's my first attempt at this task (click on the images for larger versions)...
What needs to be done
The first step is to figure out what needs to happen...
- Curricula that emphasize 21st century skills. Instead of simply adding on 21st century skills to our existing content-based standards, put them at the core of new, more focused curricula.
- Preservice and inservice training for teachers and administrators. Training in colleges and universities. Training on the job. Regular, frequent, strategic, and ongoing.
- Robust statewide online learning infrastructure for students and teachers. Because of resources or geography, high-level and credit recovery courses aren't available to many students. Training opportunities aren't available to educators. A vibrant system of online courses can help.
- Computing device in every student's hands. Laptops. Netbooks. Smartphones. Devices that have some power, are mobile, allow students to type, and can access the Internet.
- Statewide no-cost or low-cost broadband wireless access. High-speed wireless in every corner of the state.
- P-20 coordination, cooperation, and vertical articulation. Curricular, programmatic, workforce development, and other alignment across the P-20 spectrum.
Some supports need to be in place to facilitate effective implementation...
- Federal, state, and local laws, policies, and funding support. A thoughtful, helpful array of legal, policy, and funding supports for what needs to be done.
- Monitoring, assessment, and evaluation. Regular, frequent, ongoing. To inform practice, not just for accountability.
- Mindset shift. The digital, global age is here. It's time to learn how to survive and thrive in it rather than being afraid of it or ignoring it.
There's also a marketing piece to this. Who needs to be informed about what needs to be done in order to facilitate a broad base of support and buy-in?
- Parents and community members
- School board members and P-12 educators
- Postsecondary faculty and officials
- Legislators and policymakers
I'm working on this part...
YOUR INPUT IS DESIRED
I could use some help on this not-so-theoretical assignment. This is a draft. I need a final version by November 5.
- What would your system look like? How would you organize things differently? What did I leave out?
- How can we calculate some rough, back-of-the-envelope costs of these activities (e.g., just how much would it cost to get wireless broadband across the state)? I could really use some assistance costing this out.
- How is my thinking flawed? What am I forgetting? What is particularly important to emphasize? What else should I be considering?
Angela Maiers and Mike Sansone have been of great assistance with this first draft (any mistakes or logic flaws are mine alone!). I hope you will be willing to lend your thoughts as well. Thanks in advance!