3 keys to supporting students during a mental health crisis

A January 2022 study published in JAMA Pediatrics confirmed what many educators, administrators, and support staff already knew: School closures, disrupted learning, and a pandemic year have coalesced to create an alarming mental health crisis among teenagers.

The study found that up to 60 percent of students are experiencing “strong distress,” including anxiety and depression. The results echoed a recent American Psychological Association (APA) report, which found that more than 80 percent of teenagers experienced “more intense stress” during the pandemic.

In other words, as Dr. Vivek Murthy, the U.S. Surgeon General, notes, “Mental health challenges in children, adolescents, and young adults are real and widespread. Even before the pandemic, an alarming number of young people struggled with feelings of helplessness, depression, and thoughts of suicide — and rates have increased over the past decade.”…Read More

Is the education system working?

PISA, the OECD’s Programme for International Student Assessment, measures 15-year-olds’ ability to use their reading, mathematics, and science knowledge and skills to meet real-life challenges. Its league table of results suggests which of the 90 participating countries have been able to improve their education system and student performance.

But when we look back at people throughout history who have made a significant impact on society, it’s not their school reading, math, or science test results that measure their success.

One well known winner of the Nobel Prize for physics was told by his teacher at school that he would ‘never amount to anything.’ For Albert Einstein, it was his fascination with the invisible forces that deflected a compass needle and a book on science that ignited his lifelong fascination with the world around him. But how do we strike a balance between the core curriculum and the invaluable importance of developing a child’s hard and soft skills, their curiosity, and their creativity?…Read More

Trane Technologies and Discovery Education Launch a New National STEM Education Initiative to Inspire Students to be Climate Innovators

Davidson, NC and Silver Spring, MD (Monday, May 16, 2022) — Today, Trane Technologies (NYSE: TT), a global climate innovator, and Discovery Education, a worldwide edtech leader, announce they have teamed up to launch a multimedia Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) education experience for students in grades 5 to 10. The multifaceted learning program includes interactive tools, resources, and volunteers to engage and inspire students to learn, think, and solve the world’s biggest sustainability challenges, like climate change and food waste, through sustainable innovation.  

“We’re excited to launch this unique learning experience in collaboration with Discovery Education to reach students across demographics, including those in underserved communities,” said Deidra Parrish Williams, Trane Technologies’ leader of Global Corporate Social Responsibility. “The goal is to expose them to STEM concepts and experts at work in the real world, and encourage them to pursue careers in science, technology, and sustainability. Our company’s purpose is to boldly challenge what’s possible for a sustainable world. This initiative does just that by inspiring students to explore themes and topics, problem solve and develop creative solutions. It is accessible to all, and easy for educators to incorporate into their curriculums.”   

The program is part of Trane Technologies’ Sustainable Futures corporate citizenship strategy, which uplifts underrepresented students and communities through access to STEM education, enhanced learning environments, and pathways to green careers. The company has committed $100 million and 500,000 employee volunteer hours by 2030 to deploy Sustainable Futures in communities where it operates and serves.  …Read More

Case Study: How Weston School District Built a Digital Strategy with Digital Signage, 15 Minutes at a Time

(May 12, 2022) –– Rise Vision has released a new case study of Weston School District, a small school district which serves three rural communities of Cazenovia, Hillpoint, and Lime Ridge, Weston and has a student population of 300 students. While Weston School District doesn’t face the problems a very large school does, it does face its own challenges.

Amanda Keller, who has been social media and public relations director at Weston for the past 4 years discussed the district’s challenges of its students across 12 years of compulsory education. Back in 2018, Weston struggled with keeping families updated with printed, physical newsletters.

‘It was frustrating to put so much time into communication we knew would be outdated before it reached our families and community,’ Keller continues. ‘It was also time-consuming to create bulletin boards that were very limited in how we could use them. These bulletin boards also had to be recreated often to keep the images current.’…Read More

New resources target STEM via aerospace education

The American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA), Estes Industries, and the National Science Teaching Association (NSTA) have joined together to inspire the next generation of scientists and engineers through a new, multi-year initiative that will bring research-based aerospace education to thousands of classrooms nationwide.

Launched in April, Exploration Generation (ExGen) will provide K-12 educators with free lesson plans and curriculum storylines to help guide students as they explore various concepts in aerospace, engineering, and rocketry. High-quality professional learning experiences will also be developed to support teachers’ use of the ExGen instructional materials.

Even as the U.S. aerospace and defense industry leads the world in innovation, it faces challenges with the workforce: a skills gap among STEM-literate students entering the industry, a need for greater participation by women and ethnic minorities, and a growing knowledge gap from early retirements.

Based on the 2021 AIAA State of the Industry Report, nearly 50 percent of respondents believe an increased focus on diversity, equity, and inclusion by aerospace industry employers will help increase the pipeline of skilled, competent aerospace professionals.

“We are excited about our collaboration with Estes and NSTA to inspire a new space age generation. Our shared commitment to strengthening the aerospace profession is driving us to inspire the future workforce,” said Dan Dumbacher, executive director, AIAA. “We all recognize the need for a diverse and robust STEM next generation who use what they learn today to innovate and invent tomorrow. These new resources will help even more educators join us in shaping the future of aerospace.”…Read More

Here’s why blended and hybrid learning are the future of education

Blended and hybrid learning models were first introduced to extend personalized and flexible learning options to selected individuals or groups of students. But with onset of the pandemic, widespread adoption of blended and hybrid models suddenly became a necessity across all student populations.

Two years later, how have districts overcome the initial challenges and applied the lessons learned to re-imagine teaching and learning and develop an innovative vision for change in their school communities?

Join eSchool News for a panel discussion with leaders and educators who share a passion for the bold new vision of blended and hybrid learning as the future of education.…Read More

3 critical elements of a K-12 cybersecurity strategy

Technology has significantly changed the classroom experience over the last decade, with the ubiquity of the IoT, mobile apps, and teleconferencing ushering in a new era of instruction and learning. What’s more, this sea of change shows no sign of abating—case in point, late last year Roblox announced plans to reach 100 million students in the metaverse by the end of the decade. As K-12 institutions invest in emerging technologies and platforms, it’s critical that they not overlook cybersecurity concerns.

There are numerous cybersecurity challenges emerging in the connected education age, but following are some of the most pressing:

Increasingly Sophisticated Phishing Campaigns…Read More

Can we measure personalized learning’s impact?

Personalized learning offers myriad possibilities for teachers and students. And in the wake of the pandemic, as educators try to manage learning gaps, individualized learning is more critical than ever.

New edtech developments have helped these learning techniques become more efficient, scalable, and achievable for educators over the last decade. While many strategies were forced to take a back seat to more pressing challenges during the pandemic, and now it’s time to turn our attention to a more individual form of learning once again.

Join eSchool News and a panel of experts to explore what personalized learning looks like now and what’s to come. You’ll hear these experts share best practices, and you’ll learn why assessment and accountability are more important than ever in today’s K-12 landscape.…Read More

How we created a computer science curriculum in 5 steps

Even with a strict budget, limited teacher expertise in computer science, and the chaos of a pandemic, the Metropolitan School District of Pike Township (MSDPT) launched a comprehensive and engaging K-5 computer science curriculum for every student.

As an instructional specialist at MSDPT during the launch, I now understand how much collaboration, clever resource management, and hard work are required to run a successful K-5 computer science program. 

As computer science has been launched into the national spotlight, schools across the country are finding ways to integrate STEM themes into early education. Although we faced challenges at MSDPT, we were able to find solutions that fit our budget and empowered our existing faculty to teach this specialized subject with confidence.…Read More

A 4-step approach to leveraging technology in instruction

The adoption and assortment of technology in K-12 classrooms has soared over the past decade, posing challenges for schools tasked with deciding which technologies to introduce into their classrooms. Too often, these conversations around leveraging technology in instruction revolve around the what and how of physical tools — what to acquire and how to use it. However, we need to first start with the why of technology to truly address learning outcomes for all students.

Technology needs to be evaluated and chosen for its ability to engage students in meaningful and productive ways within a culture of accelerated learning. Students who are proficient with digital literacy skills and practices will have the advantage of being flexible and adaptive critical thinkers who can engage with new technology in meaningful and productive ways in every content area.

4 Steps to Integrating Technology with Purpose…Read More