Discovery Education’s K-12 Learning Platform Earns Learner Variability Product Certification From Digital Promise

SILVER SPRING, MD (Thursday, April 14, 2022)Discovery Education—the worldwide edtech leader whose digital services support learning wherever it takes place—announced today that its award-winning K-12 learning platform has earned the Learner Variability Product Certification from Digital Promise. Working at the intersection of education leaders, researchers, and technology developers, Digital Promise seeks to improve learning opportunities for all and close the Digital Learning Gap. 

The Learner Variability Product Certification serves as a rigorous, reliable signal for district and school leaders, educators, and families looking for evidence of edtech products supporting learner variability. Discovery Education submitted evidence to Digital Promise demonstrating its K-12 platform’s ability to support the diverse needs of learners and confirming their commitment to continuing to design with learner variability in mind. 

“Discovery Education’s culture of innovation is driven by our mission to prepare learners for tomorrow by creating innovative classrooms connected to today’s world,” said Pete Weir, Discovery Education’s Chief Product Officer. “However, we recognize that every student comes to the classroom with different approaches to learning. That’s why we strive to build products with flexible features that help all students grow and achieve. Discovery Education is proud to have earned the Learner Variability Product Certification and is grateful to the team at Digital Promise for their thorough review of our K-12 platform.” …Read More

IXL Awarded Research-Based Design Product Certification from Digital Promise

SAN MATEO, Calif., June 22, 2021 /PRNewswire/ —  IXL, the personalized learning platform used by more than 12 million students, announced that it has earned the  Research-Based Design product certification from Digital Promise, an independent, nonprofit organization authorized by Congress to spur innovation in education.

IXL submitted its whitepaper, ” IXL Design Principles: Core Features Grounded in Learning Science Research,” as evidence that links IXL’s product design to established research on how students learn. After a comprehensive assessment, Digital Promise awarded IXL the certification, confirming for administrators, educators, and families that IXL creates effective learning opportunities that help all students grow.

“Schools and families should feel confident that their educational resources are grounded in proven best practices,” said Paul Mishkin, CEO of IXL Learning. “The Research-Based Design certification from Digital Promise highlights IXL’s uncompromising commitment to developing world-class, evidence-based products that make a positive impact on all learners.”…Read More

19 new districts join League of Innovative Schools

A cohort of 19 new school districts have been accepted into the League of Innovative Schools, a national coalition of forward-thinking school districts organized by Digital Promise, an independent, bipartisan nonprofit organization authorized by Congress to accelerate innovation in education.

The League of Innovative Schools, launched in late 2011, accepts new members through an open application process once per year. Twenty-two districts were accepted last year. With the new members, the League now has a presence in 33 states, representing 3.3 million students. The full list of members can be found at digitalpromise.org/districts.

In addition to the 19 new members, several former members — Blue Valley USD 229, Bristol Township School District, Fulton County Schools, and Lexington County School District One — were re-admitted under new superintendents.…Read More

3 ways innovative schools advance maker learning for all

In March 2016, Digital Promise and Maker Ed issued a call-to-action for school leaders around the country to commit to growing the next generation of American makers. Over 1,400 U.S. school leaders have answered the call by signing the Maker Promise. For many members of the League of Innovative Schools, a network of the nation’s most forward-thinking superintendents, this is just an acknowledgement of the work they have long championed.

Maker learning inspires creativity, confidence, and passion for learning in young people. So how do you sustain a maker program, and encourage the sorts of innovative action required for this? We identified three major ways how League leaders are making this happen.

Commit to providing opportunities to all students for making

South Fayette Township School District
South Fayette Township School District has makerspaces in every school in the district. South Fayette has a K-12 computational thinking initiative that embeds maker curriculum in learning experiences for all 2,500 district students in every grade. This year, the district’s second graders built their first computer using Kano Raspberry PI and then used text-based code to hack a game in Minecraft.…Read More

The major momentum behind micro-credentials

New partnerships and pioneers are giving Digital Promise’s badging movement a new push

Educators are, by definition, continuous learners. They spend their careers striving to become better practitioners, whether through formal professional development activities like workshops and in-service days, or informal engagements like Twitter chats, EdCamps, and virtual coaching and communities. In fact, research conducted by Digital Promise and Grunwald suggests that educators often pursue these learning activities to satiate their own love of learning and desire to better serve their students.

While we know educators are always learning, our systems for recognizing that learning have not quite caught up. Professional development structures typically recognize educators for the time they spend learning in formal activities and rarely acknowledge informal learning. Similarly, these structures often do not focus on competency (whether an educator can apply their learning in their classrooms), which is an important step toward understanding the impact of each learning activity.

Digital Badges, also known as micro-credentials, present one tool to address these imbalances. Micro-credentials provide individuals with portable, shareable badges that recognize the learning activities they participate in or the skills they have developed. As a result, they can both highlight the wide variety of learning activities educators engage in and facilitate the shift to competency-based learning for educators.…Read More

Editor’s Picks 2015, No. four: 4 things innovative districts do to improve graduation rates

Forward-thinking practices focus on college and career readiness

graduation-ratesAs the skills expected of today’s graduates change rapidly, school districts have to overhaul their thinking on what it means to be “college and career ready.” Conventional wisdom around when and where students learn, what knowledge they need to be successful, and who they are as learners is all rapidly changing, especially as technology becomes more prevalent in classrooms.

This is all top of mind for members of the Digital Promise League of Innovative Schools, a coalition of around 57  forward-thinking districts and leaders across the country, who are committed to improving the opportunity to learn for all of their students through technology and research. We rounded up some best practices League members use to ensure students stay in school, get their degrees, and are prepared for success in their post-secondary endeavors.

Learning can happen anytime, anywhere…Read More

22 districts join network of innovative school systems

 Digital Promise League of Innovative Schools members partner with other leading educators, entrepreneurs, and researchers from across the U.S.

league-innovativeTwenty-two new school districts have been accepted into the League of Innovative Schools, a national coalition of forward-thinking school districts organized by Digital Promise, an independent, bipartisan nonprofit organization authorized by Congress to accelerate innovation in education.

The League of Innovative Schools, launched in late 2011, accepts new members through an open application process once per year. With the new members, the League now includes 73 school districts in 33 states, representing 3.2 million students. The full list of members can be found at digitalpromise.org/districts. A list of the 22 new districts being added is also available via a blog post from the league.

“The League’s goal is to find leaders pioneering bold, creative, and student-centric practices, connect them with each other, and amplify what they do best so others can learn,” said Sara Schapiro, director of the Digital Promise League of Innovative Schools. “With these new members, we add a wealth of insights, ideas, and energy to help our members effectively support teaching and learning through technology.”…Read More

Here’s how to scale school innovation

In a new TED talk, Adam Frankel, former executive director of Digital Promise, discusses how technology can help bring personalized learning and school innovation to scale.

After writing education speeches for President Obama, Frankel told the audience that he wanted to get “closer to the point of action,” and “wanted to enact the words on the page.”

It was tricky, Frankel said, because as Roland Fryer (the Robert M. Beren Professor of Economics at Harvard University, a research associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research, founder and faculty director of the Education Innovation Laboratory at Harvard) suggests, conventional approaches to education reform that should work—such as smaller class sizes—haven’t made a huge difference at scale.…Read More

White House makes ‘Digital Promise’ to schools

Duncan said Digital Promise would increase research and development in ed-tech programs.

A nonprofit start-up funded in part by the U.S. Department of Education (ED) will quickly evaluate which educational technologies are worth the investment – and which ones aren’t – while driving private-sector innovation that could modernize technology in public schools nationwide.

ED Secretary Arne Duncan on Sept. 16 unveiled the independent nonprofit initiative approved by Congress in 2008, called Digital Promise, which will be funded by government funding, along with philanthropies like the Carnegie Corporation of New York and the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation.…Read More