R.I. partners with nonprofit to promote digital learning
THE R.I. DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION will collaborate with The Learning Accelerator to promote student-centered "blended-learning" initiatives under a new partnership. R.I. Commissioner of Elementary and Secondary Education Deborah A. Gist, pictured above, said the initiative will build on the state's existing imperative to improve digital learning.
PROVIDENCE – The R.I. Department of Education on Wednesday announced a partnership with The Learning Accelerator to make Rhode Island the nation’s first “fully blended-learning” state, combining traditional teaching methods with personalized, online elements geared toward improving student engagement and achievement.
According to The Learning Accelerator, a nonprofit based in California that supports student-centered, competency-based initiatives in school districts across the United States, “blended learning” at its core is the effective use of education technology to “transform the learning experience for students.”
The Learning Accelerator will partner with RIDE to develop a five-year blended-learning strategy for Rhode Island and promote integration of digital learning throughout the state, building on the recommendations in nonprofit group’s recently released “Framework for Cultivating High-Quality Blended Learning at the State Level.”
“This partnership with The Learning Accelerator recognizes and furthers our commitment to basing instruction on the needs of every individual student,” said Deborah A. Gist, the state’s commissioner of elementary and secondary education. “Digital learning in all of its forms provides, literally, unlimited educational resources for every classroom, allows our schools to design flexible instruction schedules, and enables students and teachers to work closely together at a pace that is right for each student.”
The partnership is the first in what The Learning Accelerator envisions as a select number of state-level collaborations to help school districts transition to an innovative, student-centered model of blended learning designed to achieve explicit educational performance goals.
“States and state actors create conditions – beyond policy – that are critical to high-quality blended schools and innovation,” said Lisa Duty, a partner at The Learning Accelerator. “Together we are pursuing system-level changes and identifying the resources and critical shifts necessary to lay the foundation for more personalized, blended learning.”