News

In the marketplace: Science achievement skyrockets, makerspaces expand, and more

By Laura Devaney, Director of News, @eSN_Laura
November 9th, 2016

Don't miss this recap of the latest technology product news, reports, and research

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Tech-savvy educators know they must stay on top of the myriad changes and trends in education to learn how teaching and learning can best benefit from technology’s near-constant change.

Check below for the latest marketplace news to keep you up-to-date on product developments, teaching and learning initiatives, and new trends in education.

eScholar announced the launch of a new solution for states seeking to directly certify eligible students for free or reduced-price school meals through the USDA Food and Nutrition Service (FNS). The new solution, eScholar DirectMatch, enables users to match student data with Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) files using the solution’s combination of probabilistic and deterministic matching algorithms. This process allows states and their school food administrators to quickly and accurately identify students who are eligible for free or reduced-price school meals. Read more.

SchoolDude announced that Albuquerque Public Schools (APS) has saved $2 million over the last five years due to its preventive maintenance program managed by Dude Solutions’ MaintenanceEssentials Pro. The solution helps APS manage more than 70,000 yearly work order requests and recurring tasks on one platform increasing productivity, while saving at least 30 minutes per work order request. Read more.

Makerspaces are expected to reach accelerated classroom adoption in less than one year, according to the K-12 Edition of the 2016 New Media Consortium Horizon Report. As educators continue to embrace a transformative shift in classroom instruction and design, the Union City School District in New Jersey pioneers district-wide STEAM curriculum through the integration of 3D printing technology with the Dremel Idea Builder. As a Title 1 district with 98 percent minority enrollment and nationally known for an above-average graduation rate, UCSD leaders credit much of the district’s success to a mission for technology equity. Marcos Navas, a Dremel Idea Builder Ambassador and technology facilitator at UCSD, scales a design-thinking model to work within the district’s number of STEAM initiatives. From project-based lessons in STEAM curriculum to summer-long STEAM camps, Navas facilitates “making” in projects big and small. Read more.

Shmoop introduced a new service through which experts will read a student’s college application essay and provide detailed feedback and overall suggestions. All the student has to do is subscribe to Shmoop’s 12-month student plan between November 1, 2016 and January 15, 2017, and then email their essay to Shmoop HQ. Shmoop will offer feedback on everything: topic, coherence, organization, and even nitpicky things like sentence structure and grammar. Read more.

Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools’ (CMS) vision for science emphasizes inquiry, problem solving and communication. To support these skills and increase student engagement and understanding in physics, CMS has purchased Essential Physics, a comprehensive, high school physics program from PASCO Scientific. CMS is implementing Essential Physics in all 19 high schools that offer physics or honors physics courses. Essential Physics is a full-color, comprehensive physics textbook, paired with an e-book offering over 100 interactive tools to increase student engagement and understanding. Read more.

Differentiated instruction and Response to Intervention (RTI) share a common goal: modifying instruction until it meets the needs of all learners. A strategic partnership between Renaissance and Achieve3000 now gives educators the opportunity to seamlessly integrate the two instructional approaches to students from Pre-K through grade 12. Select districts in 2017 will be able to use the embedded and interim assessments to inform and tailor instruction across all tiers of intervention, while accessing deep learning analytics from the companies’ platforms to measure impact and efficacy. Read more.

In 2016, 77 percent of fifth graders in San Elizario Independent School District (ISD) successfully passed the STAAR science test, up from 57 percent in 2015. What changed? During the 2015-16 school year, teachers began using STEMscopes Texas as their primary science curriculum. Developed by Accelerate Learning and Rice University, STEMscopes is the most widely used science curriculum in Texas. Read more.

About the Author:

Laura Devaney

Laura Ascione Devaney is the Managing Editor, Content Services at eSchool Media. She is a graduate of the University of Maryland's prestigious Philip Merrill College of Journalism. When she isn't wrangling her two children, Laura enjoys running, photography, home improvement, and rooting for the Terps. Find Laura on Twitter: @eSN_Laura http://twitter.com/eSN_Laura


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