Denver Public Schools (DPS) is a district worth watching because they have the best and most aggressive elected school board in the country. The board is seeking to dramatically accelerate the progress they've made by investing more in what is working and embracing innovation. One way DPS is succeeding is by launching an internal innovation incubator.


Nicholas C. Donohue, President and CEO of The Nellie Mae Education Foundation, shares personal stories, practical strategies and a framework for parents navigating the shift to student-centered learning. He also shares why Nellie Mae has chosen to partner with Getting Smart to tell parent stories in the new book, Smart Parents: Parenting for Powerful Learning. This book is a compelling call to action and a practical road map for any parent, guardian or educator and "is a must read for anyone who wants to engage young people in the process of their own learning," according to Nicholas.


School districts have a theory of action but don't or can't express exactly what it is. Naming the theories in use is the first step to designing a system of schools that serves a community well.


After spending time with urban districts recently, we were reminded of the complexity of the work that superintendents are responsible for. We were also reminded how traditional education programs and development experiences do not prepare EdLeaders for their roles. In our recent paper, Preparing Leaders for Deeper Learning we outlined 10 roles for today's EdLeaders. In this blog we share important emerging skills associated with these 10 roles.


As we head to Atlanta to join Fulton County Schools in a leadership discussion, we identify 10 tips for superintendents and principals as they work to create next generation schools. For example EdLeaders should create a learner exchange vision, identify and share your theories, learn about new school models, embrace broader aims, create community engagements, model next-gen learning, personalize professional learning, and improve wellness.


There are several technical challenges to delivering on the promise of personalized learning including defining a standard student record, boosting interoperability, and combining multiple formative sources. However, there are additionally daunting implementation barriers related to school models, leadership and parents. Despite these challenges, personalization offers tremendous opportunities to boost achievement for both accelerated and struggling learners.


New schools development has been the most important K-12 innovation in the last 20 years. In the last five years, the most important development has been new tools. So, how can we evaluate this progress? In this blog we compare recent technology development against school model development.


While at #PS2015, a graduate student at BYU asked me, "What other theories are being applied in education?" That may be the best question of the year and one that every school and district leadership team should ask themselves. So, what theories are being applied to public education? Here's a few that appear to be at work.


Think of a student you care about. Think about the world they will inherit. What do you want them to know and be able to do? Now think about what their learner experience (LX) should be. Here's 20 questions that may help.


The emerging vision for learning as a service is requiring more learner and parent decisions than ever. So, with all of the individual choices, how do we protect and advance the public good? The answer to this important question has eight implications for state and local policymakers.


The opinions expressed in Vander Ark on Innovation are strictly those of the author(s) and do not reflect the opinions or endorsement of Editorial Projects in Education, or any of its publications.

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