At Hall County Schools in Georgia, students participate in digital learning days when they learn from home instead of going to school. On those days, the district offers learning opportunities in financial literacy, media bias, first aid, and other topics. “[On digital learning days], we may have more than 800,000 page views in our learning management system,” says Aaron Turpin, chief technology officer. “Every asset and tool in these lessons is connected into our learning management system using IMS Global Learning Consortium standards like Learning Tools Interoperability.”

How to integrate your digital apps

Under the leadership of more than 60 member districts, IMS Global’s members have created the K-12 Digital Learning Learning rEvolution Program, a tiered approach to help districts of all sizes improve the way their digital applications work together. The program starts with making a district-wide commitment and evolves into advanced strategies to ensure digital learning systems are learner-ready on day one.

How does a district get there?

  • Review the infrastructure recommendations in the 2017 National Educational Technology Plan.
  • Complete IMS Global’s K-12 Digital Learning Program Foundation Tier checklist to see if your district is ready for the Foundation Tier of the Digital Learning Program.
  • Read Digital Learning Now!’s 12 Keys to Smart EdTech Procurement, including prioritizing data sharing and interoperability.
  • Review Future Ready Schools’ Data and Privacy Self Assessment.
  • Implement interoperability standards to achieve the goal of digital on day one of learning. Consider adopting the OneRoster standard which allow schools to stop the error-prone burden of manually creating unique class roster data extracts for every digital text, web publisher, and platform provider. Review this OneRoster for Educators presentation for more information.
  • Begin to develop your district’s roadmap for integrating digital learning systems together so everything is available in one place.

Once a district has its foundation in place and it is easy to connect digital products together, districts can consider more advanced ecosystem capabilities that enable student-centered learning and other more revolutionary approaches. By adopting interoperability standards, all K-12 school districts can simplify workflows for educators and students, reduce costs and implementation times, minimize risk when designing systems architecture for digital learning, and streamline the gathering of analytics to improve learning outcomes.

About the Author:

Jill Hobson is a K-12 institutional program manager with IMS Global Learning Consortium. She has more than 20 years of experience planning, implementing, and evaluating software and hardware solutions in public education as well as in the private sector. Hobson joined IMS Global after working as senior education strategist for Promethean, where she provided significant insight into educational markets to lead product strategy while developing 10,000+ learning objects and professional learning online courses.