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An existing video tool was the golden ticket for this district’s pandemic plan

The eSchool Media K-12 Hero Awards, sponsored by Trox, highlights inspiring examples of education during the COVID-19 pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic is far from over, and that means educators across the globe are still finding inventive and innovative ways to support and teach students in classrooms, during hybrid instruction, and in virtual settings.

The eSchool Media K-12 Hero Awards program, sponsored by Trox, recognizes the determined and dedicated efforts of educators throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.

Never before have educators been challenged and tested as they were, beginning in March 2020 and up until today, and never before has their resilience been more apparent. Administrators, technology leaders, classroom teachers, and educators in all roles have persevered as they taught each and every one of their students during a global pandemic.

Here, eSchool News highlights Tippecanoe School Corporation–one of its K-12 Hero Awards finalists. Keep reading to discover how this school corporation keeps learning going in the middle of a global pandemic.

Nominee: Tippecanoe School Corporation

Nominated by: Screencastify

What makes this nominee a hero?

We spoke to Sarah Margeson of Tippecanoe School Corporation about her past, present, and future use of Screencastify. Her tech-forward approach with a priority on video learning positioned Tippecanoe for success before and during the pandemic.

Sarah has been Coordinator of Connected Learning at Tippecanoe for nearly six years. In her role, she is responsible for professional development across the district and introducing innovative new technologies and best practices with teachers.

Before her current role, however, Sarah taught math for six years. That’s when she learned how valuable simple creative tools like Screencastify can be for educators.

With that experience in mind, Sarah continues to prioritize tools that have simple yet powerful features that allow creators to focus on their creations. And in her current role, she continues to turn to Screencastify to provide teachers with video creation tools that can be used for in-person as well as blended learning models.

Tippecanoe School Corporation has been using Screencastify as a tool for in-person learning for multiple years. So, when schools around the world began to shut down in March 2020, the district was able to ensure students wouldn’t miss a beat and teachers would be able to create successful learning outcomes.

“We had been planting the seeds with Screencastify for a few years,” Sarah said. “And then when everything happened in March, we already had the golden ticket that we needed. We told our teachers, ‘You don’t need to learn anything new, because we already have the thing you need.’”

During her time as a math teacher, Sarah used the flipped classroom model, utilizing video as part of her homework assignments. This background gave her an understanding of how Tippecanoe teachers and students could specifically use and benefit from creating videos. And with Screencastify Record and Edit, students and teachers had the ability to easily create professional looking videos–both before March 2020 and right out of the gate during the pandemic.

However, Tippecanoe School Corporation consists of 19 schools, about 13,500 students and 1,600 staff members, so any tool used district-wide must be simple to implement for a large number of users and also simple to use for students of all ages and teachers of all skill levels.

“I didn’t want it to just be our fifth graders that can use this, I want it to be everybody. And I want the teacher and student experience to either work well together or be the same,” she said.

Her district will continue using the tools as it moves back to in-person learning and focuses on innovating with new ways it can use video for in-person learning, including:

  • Giving students a platform to demonstrate learning
  • Creating lessons for students who might need extended absences
  • Providing videos for additional reviews of lessons
  • Creating video “newsletters” to send to students’ families

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Laura Ascione

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