Valley Preparatory Academy Charter School has been selected to be one of more than 100 school districts across the country (and one of only three from the central valley) to partner with Summit Learning, a free program that provides teachers and schools with the resources they need to bring personalized learning into their classroom.
School leaders applied for the program because the school shares a common vision with Summit Learning: students should be at the center of learning.
The backbone of Summit’s approach is the online Personalized Learning Platform (PLP). Developed by teachers from Summit Public Schools in the San Francisco Bay area with technical assistance from Facebook engineers, the Summit PLP helps students set both short and long-term goals (while tracking progress towards these goals), prioritize their work, learn content at their own pace, complete deeper learning projects that apply real-world situations, and reflect on their learning. Teachers are able to better customize instruction to meet individual students’ needs and interests, including utilizing a variety of tools, many hands-on. This approach is supported by technology that allows both students and teachers to create and carry out individual learning plans and track progress towards goals.
The school will begin implementing the program and the digital platform this school year for students in sixth through eighth grades. Parents of students in those grades will soon receive more information.
This partnership aligns perfectly with the school's strategic plan; a framework for student success which empowers students to create, innovate, investigate, collaborate, communicate, solve problems, lead, reflect, and serve.
This tool will help educators deliver personalized learning and its component goals of Learning, Readiness, Resources, and Engagement through participation in the Summit Learning program and will be empowered to able to adopt this Personalized Learning Platform as a digital vehicle to fit the needs of their students.
“It is very exciting to be a part of this national community of practice,” said Director of Middle School Summit Hilary Witts. “The opportunity to access this tool at no cost to the district is incredible. There have been millions of dollars invested in design and development in this platform and VPA is very fortunate to be able to be a leader in implementing this program in our schools and our community.”
This platform not only provides the ways and means for students to be intensively focused in their education initiatives, but involves parents as well. Parents will be able to see the entire curriculum, feedback from teachers, and their child’s progress.
Valley Prep educators and school leaders recently convened with other partner schools from around the country at Summit's headquarters in the San Francisco Bay area for two weeks of free professional development and training to ensure that schools are set up for success for the school year. The same group will attend regional meetings of schools throughout the year, giving teachers access to ongoing professional development.
Excerpts taken from Fairview Park City Schools.