43 Resources Available

An Overview of K-12 Competency-Based Education for Education Leaders and Teachers

April 2017. Educators across the country have started to realize the promise of competency-based education as a new structure to organize districts and schools, designed to help students successfully master skills at each step, year after year, by ensuring they advance after they demonstrate proficiency. The concept behind competency education is simple: learning is best measured by students demonstrating…


The potential of personalized learning for communities

What’s Possible with Personalized Learning? An Overview of Personalized Learning for Schools, Families & Communities

February 2017. This paper is designed to inform schools, families and communities about the potential of personalized learning. This report describes why personalized learning matters and shows what personalized learning looks like in schools for teachers and for students.   Through case studies, this paper illustrates what personalized learning looks like in practice, provides examples of teachers…


Meeting The Every Student Succeeds Act’s Promise: State Policy to Support Personalized Learning

October 2016. Under the new federal K-12 education law, the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), states have a historic opportunity to transform K-12 education toward personalized, student-centered learning. This law represents a marked shift in federal control to states, presenting state and local stakeholders with important opportunities and flexibilities to redefine student success and the goals of…


Promising State Policies to Advance Personalized Learning

September 2016. iNACOL published the report Promising State Policies for Personalized Learning to highlight specific state examples of promising policies to support and scale personalized, competency-based learning to close equity and achievement gaps. This executive summary outlines the policies in that report. What Is the Promise of Personalized Learning? Personalized learning can: Dramatically increase equity in education; Facilitate data-rich, powerful…


A Reflection on the Field of K-12 Competency-Based Education and Emerging Issues

September 2016. States, districts and schools across the United States are realizing the shortcomings of the traditional seat-time based K-12 system and demanding more for their students. As a result, many leaders and practitioners are making the shift to competency-based education and designing new, personalized learning opportunities to better prepare students for college and 21st-century careers. As…


Promising State Policies for Personalized Learning

May 2016. The passage of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) in December 2015, which reauthorized the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (ESEA), ushered in a historic opportunity to rethink K-12 education across the country.3 The new law allows localities to create systems of assessments that meet students where they are in their learning by…


What Is Competency-Based Education?

April 2016. Competency education, an educator-led reform, is taking root in schools and districts across the country. The concept behind competency education is simple: learning is best measured by students demonstrating mastery of learning targets, rather than the number of hours spent in a classroom. By redesigning the education system around actual student learning, we will effectively…


Next Steps Under the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA)

April 2016. The new K-12 federal education law, the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), gives states increased flexibility over assessment, accountability and use of funding. This represents a marked shift in federal control to states, presenting state and local stakeholders with an important opportunity to redefine what student success looks like and the goals of our nation’s…


Innovation Zones: Creating Policy Flexibility for Personalized Learning

March 2016. This policy issue brief describes what innovation zones are, why they are important and examples of legislative language from various states. Innovation zones or districts of innovation help state policy leaders identify outdated policies and regulations that may get in the way of educators designing innovative learning models. They create space for districts and schools to…


A Conversation with the 2015 iNACOL National Blended & Online Learning Teacher of the Year

December 2015. Paula Barr, a second grade teacher with Quail Run School, Lawrence Public Schools (KS) was recently honored as the 2015 Blended & Online Teacher of the Year at the iNACOL Blended & Online Learning Symposium, held in Orlando, Florida. In this webinar, Paula shared her perspective on how blended and online teaching improves student engagement,…