Jan 16, 2018
Illinois high schoolers participating in the state’s new “competency-based learning” programs are reinventing the wheel when it comes to K-12 education.
Put your ear to the ground of education reform and you’ll hear a lot of different strategies to bring the focus back to students: problem-based learning centers on students’ tackling real-world issues, while community-based learning brings parents’ and students’ lives outside school into the learning process. This school year, 10 Illinois school districts are putting competency-based learning (another way to say “personalized learning”) to the test.
Illinois’ personalized learning initiative throws out the old grading system and allows students to set the pace for their own learning. Traditional testing is augmented by student projects in and out of the classroom, and students receive individualized feedback from teachers. What’s more, students become teachers themselves by assisting classmates with subject areas they’ve excelled in, giving students more ownership in the learning process.
Whatever its merits or, for its critics, shortcomings as a school-based strategy, personalized learning is revolutionizing what it means to be an educator and a student nationwide, with many states experimenting with personalized learning initiatives, according to a recent report from nonprofit iNACOL.
In time, states might just learn what parents and students have known all along about the benefits of personalized learning, thanks to its original trailblazers: your friendly tutors.
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Illinois high schools test different, often controversial, approach to education http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/breaking/ct-met-no-teacher-learning-20171212-story.html