High school students collaborating at an interactive whiteboard for a blended learning assignment.

10 K12 education trends to look for this year

From immersive tech to integrated learning, here's what to expect in K12 classrooms

5. Introduction of “digital backpacks”

The Common Education Data Standards (CEDS) efforts have been in place for almost a decade now, but technology has made it easier for schools to securely share information. More schools will begin implementing—or look to improve—their systems for “digital backpacks.” These will follow students throughout their K-12 academic career, and will give teachers access to test results, student’s strengths and weaknesses, individual needs, and notes from previous educators. This should help teachers develop effective personalized learning plans to help their students transition into new classrooms.

6. Higher degrees of personalized learning

While we won’t be moving away from standardized testing any time soon, we do see more schools leaning toward personalized learning methods. Online charter schools seem to be leading the charge with this trend. Innovative technologies have given teachers a way to monitor student progress in more individualized ways, which allows them to tailor their instruction to benefit their students and help them be more successful.

7. Stronger understanding of student progress

The Internet of things (IoT), or the interconnection of our digital devices and everyday objects, will help teachers better monitor student progress. At its full capacity, IoT can help teachers and parents track their student’s homework—when it was completed, how long it took to complete—to help them understand which teaching methods or assignments are the most advantageous. It can also help students, teachers, and parents engage in real time, about assignments and learning material.

8. Greater digital security

Of course, the more common technology becomes in the classroom, the more schools will need to focus on cybersecurity. Educators will make it a priority to protect their students across digital environments, but we suspect AI developments will make avoiding potential threats much easier. Parents will install security apps on their child’s devices, and they will be commonplace in the classroom.

9. Getting students ready for the real world

Higher education seems to be directing its attention on developing workforce and entrepreneurial skills. We think this will trickle down to K-12 instruction. Schools will focus on providing students with the resources to learn skills that will help them in the current economy. Here’s how one district is supporting college and career readiness.

10. Edtech companies will have more influence on curriculum

With schools aiming their attention on skill-based education, we’ll see edtech companies jumping in and looking for opportunities to shape curriculum. The country’s current administration appears to favor privatization in education sectors, and we think that will create space for edtech companies to influence what is taught in classrooms.

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