Our Future Ready Pledge
- – Foster and lead a culture of digital learning within our schools.
- – Help schools and families transition to high-speed connectivity.
- – Empower educators through professional learning opportunities.
- – Accelerate progress toward universal access for all students to quality devices.
- – Provide access to quality digital content.
- – Offer digital tools to help students and families #ReachHigher.
The Future Ready Framework
The Sioux City Community School District has been designated a Future Ready District by the US Department of Education. The characteristics of Future Ready districts include: building the right infrastructure, imagining the classrooms of the future, ensuring teachers are ready to utilize and benefit from technology, preparing administrators to lead and support teachers as they utilize technology, and including parents, community members, school board members, and others in discussions. The Future Ready Cohort program will provide learning opportunities to support teams of teachers as they incorporate increased use of technology into the classroom learning environment and continue to make advancements within the District.
Six schools from the Sioux City Community School District received grants to implement Future Ready strategies in our district. We had huge success with the Future Ready Cohort project in 2017-18 and will be continuing the project in 2018-19. On the left column of this page is information about the Future Ready Cohort project. More information, including application materials, will be provided in February to building principals.
Future Ready teams have designed a road map to achieve success and to commit our district to move as quickly as possible towards a shared vision of preparing students for success in college, career, and citizenship. This road map can only be accomplished through a systemic approach to change, as outlined in the Future Ready Framework. With personalized student learning at the center, a district must align each of the seven (7) key categories, called “Gears”, in order to ensure a successful digital conversion.
The 7 Gears of Future Ready Framework
The outside rings of the framework emphasize the need for collaborative leadership and the cycle of transformation where districts vision, plan, implement, and assess continually. Once our district is strategically staged in each gear, district leaders can be confident that they are ready for a highly successful implementation phase that leads to innovation empowered by digital learning.
Below each of the Future Ready Framework’s gears are described in detail. Further information can be found on the left column of this page.
In a Future Ready district, curriculum, instruction, and assessment are tightly aligned, redesigned to engage students in 21st Century, personalized, technology-enabled, deeper learning. Curricula and instruction are standards-aligned, research-based, and enriched through authentic, real-world problem solving.
Students and teachers have robust and adaptive tools to customize the learning, teaching, and assessment, ensuring that it is student-centered and emphasizing deep understanding of complex issues. Data and associated analysis serve as building blocks for learning that is personalized, individualized, and differentiated to ensure all learners succeed.
Personalized learning requires changes in the way instructional time is used and the learning space is designed. Many schools are shifting away from Carnegie units to competency-based learning. This type of system adapts learning to meet the needs, pace, interests, and preferences of the learner. As the pedagogy shifts, so too must the learning space.
This transition is made possible through innovative uses of technology for diagnostic, formative and summative assessments, for managing learning, for engaging students in learning, and for providing anywhere, anytime learning. Such transitions required districts to rethink and more effectively leverage the use of instructional time and space.
When employed as part of a comprehensive educational strategy, the effective use of technology provides tools, resources, data, and supportive systems that increase teaching opportunities and promote efficiency.
Such robust environments enable anytime, anywhere learning based on competency and mastery with empowered, caring adults who are guiding the way for each student to succeed. High quality, high speed technology and infrastructure systems within a school district are essential to the advancing of digital learning. In these environments, the use of technology is seamless, and students have ubiquitous access to broadband on high quality devices both at school and while they are at home.
Data privacy and security are foundational elements of digital learning. The district ensures that sound data governance policies are enacted and enforced to ensure the privacy, safety, and security of confidential data sets. Such policies and procedures ensure that access to authorized persons is secure. Education professionals have a range of resources, trainings, and services available to build their awareness and capacity to implement such policies and procedures with precision.
A personalized, learner-centered environment uses technology to collect, analyze, and organize data to provide continuous cycles of feedback to students, teachers and other education professionals, with the intent of increasing the depth, breadth, complexity, and efficiency of learning. All policies and practices ensure student data privacy.
Community partnerships include the formal and informal local and global community connections, collaborative projects, and relationships that advance the school’s learning goals. Digital communications, online communities, social media, and digital learning environments often serve as connectors for these partnerships.
The transition to digital learning will require strategic short-term and long-term budgeting and leveraging of resources. All budgets at the district and the school should be aligned to the new, personalized vision for learning, with consistent funding streams for both recurring and non-recurring costs to ensure sustainability. During the transition, district leaders should strive for cost-savings and efficiencies through effective uses of technology.
In Future Ready Schools, technology and digital learning expand access to high-quality, ongoing, job-embedded opportunities for professional learning for teachers, administrators, and other education professionals. Such opportunities ultimately lead to improvements in student success and create broader understanding of the skills that comprise success in a digital age.
Digital Professional learning communities, peer-to-peer lesson sharing, and better use of data and formative assessment, combined with less emphasis on “sit and get” professional development sessions eliminate the confines of geography and time.