Planning for All to Flourish

 

There’s a lot to learn from the gang at Westminster Public Schools in Colorado. For the past 12 years, the district has been operating on a competency-based model, from pre-K to 12, and has been well-positioned to make it through the pandemic. According to Dr. Jenni Gotto, Executive Director of Teaching and Learning at Westminster Public Schools, “When we talk about our competency-based model, we talk about shared vision at all levels from students to our board of education in our community, leadership at all levels. Our competency-based design is one of the key pieces that has allowed us to really respond to where students are at. Being able to precisely pinpoint where students are at and being able to start back up during the summer, in the fall and after each one of the breaks that students had to take; we tracked data at a very precise levels, through that competency-based component of our model, continuous improvement.

“We’ll share things that we've learned, things that have been successful and, things with which we've struggled. And we're really framing this from Lewin's model right now about things that will freeze and unfreeze and refreeze. Some things we've learned through COVID I think will benefit us forever, will change what we've done in our schools and in our classrooms for the better. Everything hasn't been all bad as we've been through this experience, building into a learner-centered classroom, putting students at the center of their instruction.”

Dr. Gotto is joined by Melisa Sandoval, Director, Social Emotional Learning & Student Agency, and Molly Mojden, Assistant Principal at the new Westminster Virtual Academy. Together, they’ll help you find the silver lining in the pandemic cloud, through three approaches to learning. It’s heady stuff and places the learner squarely at the center of learning.

 

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