EARLYSVILLE, Va., April 14, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — Education change agent Ted Dintersmith formally launched the What School Could Be platform today – the most ambitious step yet in a decade-long effort to support grassroots educators in their mission to elevate learning and life outcomes for their students. The platform – which is free – gives change-minded K-12 educators access to professional development and coaching, proven resources, and regular events with the goal of accelerating school transformation post-COVID-19. Most importantly, the platform offers innovative educators a way to connect with, and draw inspiration and support from, like-minded colleagues in a safe, secure online community.
«What School Could Be has built and tested a digital platform for engagement, sharing, and learning that is free to all, educator-led, and responsive to each community’s unique vision for school change and transformation,» said Dintersmith, founder of What School Could Be. «It doesn’t mandate one right answer, but supports communities in setting their own goals and then making joyful teacher-led progress.»
During its three-month beta stage, the What School Could Be app has grown explosively, already engaging more than 1,000 active users taking advantage of free Office Hours and Faculty Lounge coaching sessions, creative collaboration, and inspiring resources. New educators are joining daily to get and share ideas about post-COVID school transformation. For example, educators in one state formed a group to discuss authentic student assessment in civics. A district leader from Canada logged into the app’s Office Hours to get ideas for keeping high schoolers engaged in virtual schools and received suggestions on effective strategies. Many express enthusiasm and relief to find like-minded educators in a forum free of the vitriol, privacy concerns, and data breaches of mainstream social media platforms.
«The app offers practical resources I can use on a daily basis to strengthen and improve my school community,» said Katina Soares, principal of Molokai High School in Hawai’i. «Everyone benefits – administration, teachers, students, and parents. Research shows that if the school climate is good, the academics will follow.»
In conjunction with this launch, What School Could Be is sponsoring a series of public GameChanger conversations this spring, as well as providing in partnership with Arizona State University’s Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College a PD offering to teams of educators committed to reimagining education – both for students and for teachers in the field. These resources complement an existing Playlist of resources that is sparking conversation and accelerating change in schools across the country and around the world.
«As schools reshape themselves post-COVID, there is growing interest in making sure they re-open with new thinking and fresh ideas about what best serves our kids, and what restores the joy to teaching,» said Dintersmith. «What better moment than now to reimagine education?»
What School Could Be founder Ted Dintersmith, a former venture capitalist, received in 2018 the National Education Association «Friend of Education» Award. His body of work includes the top-selling book What School Could Be: Insights and Inspiration from Teachers Across America and the acclaimed film Most Likely to Succeed. During his professional career, he was ranked as the top-performing U.S. venture capitalist for the years 1995-1999.
What School Could Be is a nationwide community of dedicated educators committed to creating learning experiences that empower all students to flourish in school and life. This growing grassroots movement is focused on transforming school in ways that better prepare students and restore joy to our classrooms.
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SOURCE What School Could Be