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Innovation Zones: Creating Policy Flexibility for Competency-Based Personalized Learning (updated August 2018)

August 2018. This issue brief describes what innovation zones are, why they are important and highlights how the following seven states/localities have approached their innovation zones statutes and regulations: Arkansas Colorado Kentucky Minnesota Mississippi New York City North Dakota Innovation zones or districts of innovation help state policy leaders identify outdated policies and regulations that may get…


Meeting Students Where They Are

April 2018. Meeting Students Where They Are, written by Antonia Rudenstine, Sydney Schaef, Dixie Bacallao and Sarah Hakani of reDesign, provides school and district leaders with an in-depth exploration of the relational, pedagogical and structural dimensions of meeting students where they are in K-12 competency-based education systems. Competency-based education models, designed to ensure equity for all students,…


Designing for Equity: Leveraging Competency-Based Education to Ensure All Students Succeed

April 2018. This publication offers equity strategies for personalized, competency-based education to ensure a more equitable K-12 education system. Districts and schools can use the equity principles within this report to develop an equity agenda within their personalized, competency-based systems. Competency-based education systems, designed to ensure all students achieve success, holds promise as a uniquely powerful model…


Next Generation Learning Models for English Language Learners: Promising Practices and Considerations for Teaching and Learning

July 2017. The purpose of this paper is to highlight the promising practices and trends in personalized learning and competency-based education for English language learner (ELL) students. This paper shares case studies and examples from schools and programs that are currently creating personalized, competency-based learning environments for ELL students. This paper is designed for practitioners, including educators and education…


Communication and Outreach Strategies for Leaders Shifting to Personalized Learning

April 2017. Effective community engagement is a cornerstone of successful personalized learning implementation. As schools and districts shift toward personalized learning, it is imperative to effectively engage parents, teachers, students and community members through intentional, meaningful communication and outreach strategies. What do these communication and outreach strategies look like? View this archived webinar to learn how to…


How Teachers Are Leading Change for Personalized Learning

February 2017. How can teachers lead innovative change and create buy-in for personalized learning? What can teachers do to foster personalized learning for students and design engaging instructional activities? View this archived webinar to hear fellow leaders and educators from East Pennsboro School share their experiences and insights in leading innovative change to improve learning experiences for…


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…


Rethinking Systems of Assessments and Building Educator Capacity

October 2016. The new federal K-12 education law, the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), presents states with historic opportunities to increase flexibility around systems of assessments and educator development systems. By taking advantage of these new flexibilities, states can transform K-12 education toward personalized, student-centered learning. What can these new systems of assessments look like under ESSA,…


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…