Last month, SXSWedu was held in Austin, Texas and showcased some of the most exciting and promising new innovations in digital learning and support systems from across the country as part of its LAUNCHedu competition. This year's group included a variety of startups focused on addressing a broad range of needs - from improving student learning and comprehension skills, to helping teachers manage lesson planning more efficiently, to assisting schools and districts in interpreting student data.
With Duval County poised to make significant investments in digital learning and internal data systems over the coming years, keeping on top of the latest innovations out there and evaluating new programs in terms of what best meets the needs of Duval County students will need to be an ongoing priority. Below are a few from this year's competition that could be worth keeping in mind as administrators and teachers look for new ways to find digital solutions to improve day-to-day activities:
Actively Learn: Actively Learn is designed to reinforce student comprehension skills by creating an "active reading environment", in which students are engaged with embedded questions and supporting content built right into digital texts. For teachers, Actively Learn also incorporates tools for individualizing instruction, monitoring student learning, and integrating Common Core standards.
Common Curriculum: Common Curriculum is a free site designed to help teachers write and track weekly lesson plans and collaboratively design lesson activities with other teachers. The platform makes it easy to keep track of your own plans, including integrating attachments and links to materials to be used right and aligning lessons to Common Core standards to track what you have covered, as well as to share plans and collaboratively design plans and activities with other teachers in your network.
LearnSprout: LearnSprout is designed to help schools and districts make more meaningful insights out of raw student performance data and budget information. LearnSprout is free to schools and districts, FERPA compliant, and works with existing student information systems to track, connect and visualize data to help easily identify student needs and most effective program investments.
Check out information about all of this year's finalists here. What other programs are out there that could help move Duval County further towards our goal of universally high quality public schools for all students?