Personalized learning is an approach to education being explored in several countries around the world.
With direction from the Ministry of Education School District 27, Superintendent Diane Wright is embarking on conversations to introduce the concept of personalized learning to students, educators and the public in the district.
Wright has assembled the information in the form of a power point presentation called A Journey to Personalized Learning: Creating a vision for our students in the 21st century.
“This direction from the Ministry of Education is rooted in discussions from around the world about the changes necessary to education to ensure our children are successful in the 21st century,” Wright says. She says B.C. has one of the best performing education systems in the world just behind Hong Kong, China and the top performer Finland. She says the most advanced education systems are pushing for innovation to the world of learning and the place of learning that address the forces of globalization, technology, and demographics related to the realities of a world job market that is constantly shifting.
“It’s really about how you move through the world and use information,” Wright says.
Over the next few weeks Wright will make the PowerPoint presentation to the school board, principals, the district parent advisory committee, and district staff. At each meeting she will also seek input on the concepts from the participants.
On Feb. 3 there will be a presentation and discussion session for the public held at 3:30 p.m. at Glendale Elementary School. Another public presentation will be scheduled later for 100 Mile House.
Wright says the Ministry of Education’s superintendent of achievement Rick Davis and Sheila Rooney, a retired superintendent for the Burnaby school district and now educational consultant, will attend the public meeting to answer questions and collect local feedback on the personalized learning concept.
She says the presentation is designed to stimulate conversation on the concept of personalized learning and gather input on how the ideas might evolve for this district.
Over the past few months Wright has also started visiting schools in the district to have learning conversations with teachers and intermediate students.
So far she has had learning conversations at seven elementary schools. During the conversations she asks the teachers and students three questions: what helps to create a sense of belonging in their school; what helps students to learn; and what can educators do to help prepare students for the future?
She says she is amazed at some of the articulate answers she is receiving from students and impressed with many of the programs schools have initiated to create a sense of belonging and improve learning outcomes.
“I just have such a privilege to be in the schools and sharing with teachers and students. It is proving to be very valuable,” Wright says.