Monday, December 19, 2016

Schools Matter: The gift no one wanted–how digital learning came to MA & Fair Test finally woke up.

Schools Matter: The gift no one wanted–how digital learning came to MA & Fair Test finally woke up.:

The gift no one wanted–how digital learning came to MA & Fair Test finally woke up.


from Wrench in the Gears
December 15, 2016


The Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education announced yesterday, the creation of a new statewide personalized-learning initiative called MAPLE (Massachusetts Personalized Learning EdTech) Consortium. It is important to note that educational technology is specifically called out in the name. This public-private partnership is being funded by the Barr Foundation and the Nellie Mae Foundation, one of the primary advocates for Competency Based Education in New England. There are currently twelve pilot districts, but the plan is to add an additional thirty districts over time.

Updates on the program were given to Massachusetts’ Digital Learning Advisory Council in January 2016: http://www.doe.mass.edu/boe/sac/dlac/2016-0106minutes.pdf

Digital Learning Advisory Council members for 2015-16 included representatives of the Harvard Graduate School of Education, MIT, The Clayton Christensen Institute for Disruptive Innovation, The Virtual High School, The Center for Applied Special Technology, The American Federation of Teachers, and the Massachusetts Teachers Association. Full member list here.

According to the Council’s September 2016 minutes, the contract for the program had been awarded to Learn Launch as of that time. Ann Koufman-Frederick, the Chief Academic Officer of Learn Launch, appears to be the project contact. She has ties to districts across the state.

Within 24 hours of MAPLE’s announcement, Fair Test came out with a cautionary post on the potential for personalized learning to lead to constant online testing. And in a bit of irony, actually cited one of Wrench In The Gears’ blog posts as a 
Schools Matter: The gift no one wanted–how digital learning came to MA & Fair Test finally woke up.:



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