New research offers major insights into post-pandemic learning

Educators are noticeably more comfortable giving students autonomy over their learning–and this is just one of the long-term impacts the pandemic has had on K-12 education, according to insight from the nonprofit Project Tomorrow.

In its annual Congressional Briefing, the nonprofit presented this year’s Speak Up Research Project findings. This year’s results indicate patterns across digital learning for students and teachers coinciding with the effects that the pandemic had on learning.

The Speak Up Research Project is a national research initiative and free service to schools and districts. Since the Fall of 2003, Speak Up has helped education leaders include the voices of their stakeholders in annual and long-term planning. ed.Web.net hosted the briefing, which featured keynote speaker Kristina Ishmael, Deputy Director of the Office of Ed Tech at the U.S. Department of Education.…Read More

Whole child learning paves a path to success, teachers say

An overwhelming majority of educators polled in a new survey say they believe students achieve success when schools make whole child learning a priority.

Ninety-one percent of teachers participating in education nonprofit Gradient Learning’s national survey, say they believe students perform better when schools prioritize whole child learning.

Conducted in partnership with Project Tomorrow, the Gradient Learning Poll surveyed 1,418 teachers, of grades 4-12, across the country to better understand their views on the state of education. …Read More

How teachers can make history current this Presidents’ Day

Social Studies teachers seem to have an impossible challenge: take events that happened hundreds or thousands of years ago and make them relevant to today’s teens. That explains why only about half of middle and high school students say they are engaged in what they are learning in school most of the time, according to recent research from Project Tomorrow.

Presidents’ Day is a great opportunity to turn this around. The key is understanding what gets students jazzed and adapting lessons to fit their preferences.

There are many reasons for the lack of interest in history and other subjects. Teachers worry that it’s hard for them to compete with smartphones and the type of entertaining content that students can access at any time, including TikTok, Instagram, and YouTube. …Read More

A national esports effort aims to ‘change the trajectory’ for students

As a student, video gamer and flight instructor Hudson Davis was often bored in school. He found that many classes provided only a surface-level understanding of key topics—and he was doing a lot of self-directed learning outside of class to explore topics he was passionate about.

“School should do a better job of allowing students to dig into those subjects that interest them,” Davis said. “Many kids just don’t get the opportunity to do that.”

Davis’s experience isn’t unusual. Even before the pandemic, many students felt disengaged from school. The shift to remote learning through platforms such as Zoom and Google Meets has only intensified the problem, creating what Julie Evans, CEO of Project Tomorrow, called an “unparalleled crisis for today’s teens.”…Read More

5 new developments in physical and network safety

As technology improves, so do solutions to keep students and teachers safe in school buildings and on school networks. This is the main reason why school safety, including cybersecurity and physical safety, retains its place as a top concern for education leaders.

Balancing access to educational resources with security needs remains a top challenge for school district IT leaders, according to new findings from the Speak Up Research Project for Digital Learning.

Seventy-one percent of district administrators and IT leaders are concerned about the security of their network against malicious attacks or misbehavior, as outlined in the data, which comes from a collaboration between the nonprofit Project Tomorrow and cloud security provider iboss.…Read More

IT leaders, admins still fear network attacks

Balancing access to educational resources with security needs remains a top challenge for school district IT leaders, according to new findings from the Speak Up Research Project for Digital Learning.

Seventy-one percent of district administrators and IT leaders are concerned about the security of their network against malicious attacks or misbehavior, as outlined in the data, which comes from a collaboration between the nonprofit Project Tomorrow and cloud security provider iboss.

The top concern with cloud applications among technology leaders is ensuring data privacy (58 percent).…Read More

Text, tweet, email, call—what do parents want in school communications?

When it comes to school communications, parents today want more information from their children’s teachers and schools, but they also want that information to be timely, targeted, and personalized to their children or their interest areas.

The latest data from Speak Up Research Project gives insights on school-to-home communications. In “Text, Twitter, Email, Call—What Do Parents Say About School Communications?” Dr. Julie Evans, chief executive officer of Project Tomorrow, shared these insights from parents, educators, and administrators, and discussed takeaways from the research.

Currently: How Most Parents Receive Information…Read More

Survey: Parents prefer texting and mobile communication from schools

Determining the right mix of traditional and digital tools to best engage with parents and district stakeholders remains a primary challenge for district communications, according to a new report.

A large part of a school district’s ability to implement successful initiatives or pass bonds lies in its communications and its ability to connect with community members.

Now, a new report from Blackboard and Project Tomorrow outlines the different roles district communications officials play in today’s schools. The results reflect the increasingly important yet challenging role of communications in today’s K-12 districts.…Read More

Speak Up: The current state of digital learning

How, and for what purposes, are students using digital tools?

speakup-digitalWhile girls use many digital tools for learning more than boys, more boys than girls say they are interested in STEM careers–however, student interest in STEM careers has not increased significantly in seven years, according to the annual Speak Up survey results from Project Tomorrow.

This year’s report focused on how K-12 students use digital tools and resources to support schoolwork, how they use digital tools and resources to enable out-of-school-time learning activities, and what K-12 students’ aspirations are when it comes to using digital tools and resources in new and innovative learning environments.

As digital technologies becomes more ubiquitous and as more and more efforts support expanded internet access, students are making their technology preferences clear.…Read More