SXSWedu Panel Will Reveal How to Dramatically Transform

K-12 Libraries to Bustling Centers of Learning, Engagement

‘Innovative Library Makerspaces’ session set for March 11 in Austin, TX


AUSTIN, Texas, Feb. 25, 2015–Imagine K-12 schools where libraries are no longer places of quiet consumption but rather bustling, active community hubs where learning is project based and collaborative. A session at this year’s SXSWedu Conference and Festival in Austin, Texas will reveal how three educators in different parts of the country helped transform their libraries into nationally recognized, 21st-century learning centers where engagement trumps infrastructure.

The one-hour session, “Schools’ Vortex: Innovative Library Makerspaces,” is scheduled for noon on Wednesday, March 11, the third day of the conference that has earned worldwide acclaim for celebrating innovative action in the future of teaching and learning.

The panelists for the “Innovative Library Makerspaces” session are:

  • Patrice Bryan, service learning teacher; Maplewood Richmond Heights School District,

St. Louis, Mo.

  • Darcy Coffta, upper school librarian; Berwick Academy, South Berwick, Maine.
  • Dottie Smay, media specialist; Shorecrest Preparatory School, St. Petersburg, Fla.

The panelists all have transformed their traditional libraries from quiet reading spaces into unique, innovative centers of learning and action. Bryan, Coffta and Smay will reveal the obstacles they faced and overcame, and share their secrets, best practices and what the makerspace format has done for student learning.

All three panelists have imparted some of their wisdom through their individual entries into the Follett Challenge, an annual contest that highlights and rewards the most innovative K-12 programs that teach 21st-century skills to students in the U.S. and Canada. Bryan’s entry on behalf of her school was a grand-prize winner in the 2013 Follett Challenge.

Britten Follett, director of social media and web content for Follett, will serve as moderator for the panel, which will be held in Rooms 400/402 at the Hilton Austin Downtown, 500 East 4th Street.

The SXSWedu Conference & Festival, set for March 9-12, fosters innovation in learning by hosting a diverse and energetic community of stakeholders across a variety of backgrounds in education. By providing a platform for collaboration, SXSWedu’s mission is to promote creativity and social change.

For more information about the “Schools’ Vortex: Innovative Library Makerspaces” panel,

For more information on the 2015 conference, visit


Curriculum Associates’ Ready® TNCore Mathematics Selected as Approved Instructional Program for Tennessee Schools

Program for grades K–8 chosen based on its focus, rigor, alignment, coherence, usability, and sensitivity


NORTH BILLERICA, Mass., February 25, 2015—Curriculum Associates’ Ready® TNCore Mathematics for grades K–8 was recently selected by the State Textbook and Instructional Materials Quality Commission as an approved instructional program for Tennessee schools. The Commission recommended the program based on its focus, rigor, alignment, coherence, usability, and sensitivity after a rigorous review.


According to the Tennessee Department of Education’s website, the reviews of programs recommended by the State Textbook and Instructional Materials Quality Commission for inclusion on the Official List of Textbooks and Instructional Materials were prepared by committees of classroom teachers and other experts (state advisory panels) and approved by the Commission. The reviews were conducted for the two-fold purpose of assisting the Commission in formulating the official list and assisting local adoption committees in selecting the textbook programs which best meet their local needs.


“Using a research-based and proven-effective model, Ready TNCore was built true to the details and intent of Tennessee’s mathematics standards,” said Rob Waldron, CEO of Curriculum Associates. “The approval of our program reinforces the impact of Ready TNCore as part of the teaching and learning process in helping to effectively improve student outcomes and achievement across key areas of math.”


The Ready TNCore program addresses the emphasis on conceptual understanding through reasoning, modeling, and discussion that explores the structure of mathematics. The student lessons lay a foundation of conceptual understanding of the mathematical principles underlying the skills addressed while also developing students’ procedural fluency.


As part of the grades K–2 section of the review, the Commission stated, “Math problems are presented in real-world context and each lesson includes a real-world connection. The Common Core Performance Task is scaffolded and also encourages students to apply what they know.”


To learn more about the State Textbook and Instructional Materials Quality Commission’s review and selection process, visit the Tennessee Department of Education’s website at To learn more about Ready TNCore for Mathematics, visit


About Curriculum Associates

Founded in 1969, privately owned Curriculum Associates, LLC, designs research-based print and online instructional materials, screens and assessments, and data management tools. The company’s products and outstanding customer service provide teachers and administrators with the resources necessary for teaching diverse student populations and fostering learning for all students.