Envision and Discovery Education Announce Three Grand Prize Winning Schools of Nationwide ‘Champions for Change Contest’ — from Arkansas, California and Idaho — That Will Witness History at the 2017 Presidential Inauguration Leadership Summit
—Ballico Elementary School (Ballico, CA), Ozark Junior High School (Ozark, AR), and Idaho School for the Deaf and Blind (Gooding, ID) Earn Top Online Public Vote—
–Contest is Part of the ‘Chase the Race in School’ Civics Education Program, Now Offering New Resources on the Inauguration and First 100 Days—
WASHINGTON, DC (January 10, 2017) – Envision, a leading experiential education organization, and Discovery Education, the leading provider of digital content and professional development for K-12 classrooms, announced today the three grand prize winning schools of the Champions for Change Contest:
- Ballico Elementary School (Ballico, CA) of Ballico Cressey School District
- Ozark Junior High School (Ozark, AR) of Ozark R-VI School District
- Idaho School for the Deaf and Blind (Gooding, ID) of Gooding School District.
With more than 35,000 contest entries, these schools received the highest number of public votes to attend Envision’s Presidential Inauguration Leadership Summit held in Washington, D.C. from January 18th to 22nd, 2017. The contest is part of the Chase the Race in School program that works to engage, captivate and energize the youth voice on the importance of democracy and civic engagement. The program includes a series of classroom resources to lead students through the major presidential election milestones.
One educator and five students from each of the three winning schools will receive an all-expense-paid trip to the Presidential Inauguration Leadership Summit, including the 58th Presidential Inauguration on the National Mall. During this time, they will be inspired by world-renowned speakers such as Gen. Colin Powell, Spike Lee, and Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Malala Yousafzai; participate in events that will solidify their path to becoming a future leader; work to create solutions to 21st century challenges as part of a Delegation for Change; and connect with fellow civic-minded, high-aspiring students.
The Chase the Race online resources, videos, digital tools, and live experiences have been bringing the Election events to life through the perspective of the youth audience—from the primaries to Election Day, and from the Presidential Inauguration to the transition process. Materials also include classroom activities that outline the history of the inauguration ceremony as well as the impact a new President has during the first 100 days of the Presidency. Additionally, through the broader Chase the Race program, twelve U.S. students had the opportunity to play an active role in the election process by serving as onsite reporters at a number of key political events.
“We want to congratulate the ‘Champions for Change’ winners,” said Envision’s CEO Duncan Young. “We are excited for the teachers and students from the winning schools to take part in the Presidential Inauguration Leadership Summit, which is specifically designed to empower next-generation leaders to work together to form solutions for some of the nation’s most important issues. Even though this election cycle has been divisive, we’re seeing students from all over the country- with different views and life experiences- collaborating, working together, and listening to one another as they develop their skills as future leaders.”
“Discovery Education is happy to join Envision in congratulating the three winning schools and their delegates,” said Lori McFarling, senior vice president of Discovery Education. “Our partnership has focused on helping today’s students learn the importance of civic engagement through digital content that brings the political process to life in a meaningful and engaging way. We look forward to continuing to bring students everywhere the high-quality videos, digital tools, and live experiences that help us achieve this goal.”
For more information, visit www.ChasetheRaceinSchool.com.
Envision helps students turn their career and life aspirations into reality. The Envision family of programs (http://www.envisionexperience.com) enable students of all ages to explore their interests and gain learning experience beyond the classroom. Since 1985, Envision programs have served more than 800,000 students from more than 145 countries, with programs designed to connect high aspiring students with the leadership, scholarship, and career skills needed to success in today’s competitive college and career landscape; providing unique, real world experiences that enable students to discover their passion, try out a future career, and positively impact the world around them.
About Discovery Education
Discovery Education is the global leader in standards-based digital content for K-12, transforming teaching and learning with award-winning digital textbooks, multimedia content, professional development, and the largest professional learning community of its kind. Serving 4.5 million educators and over 50 million students, Discovery Education’s services are in half of U.S. classrooms, 50 percent of all primary schools in the UK, and more than 50 countries. Discovery Education partners with districts, states and like-minded organizations to captivate students, empower teachers, and transform classrooms with customized solutions that increase academic achievement. Discovery Education is powered by Discovery Communications (NASDAQ: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK), the number one nonfiction media company in the world. Explore the future of education at www.discoveryeducation.com.
Reading Horizons Webcast Offers Best Practices for Dyslexia Instruction and Intervention
Dyslexia expert Donell Pons, M.Ed., MAT, will explain the process of evaluating for dyslexia and appropriate instruction and accommodations for students with print-based disabilities
(SALT LAKE CITY) January 10, 2017 — Reading Horizons, a multisensory curriculum used to rapidly increase reading skills, today announced its upcoming webcast, Dyslexia: Best Practices for Instruction and Intervention.
The webcast will take place on Wednesday, January 25, 2017, at 6:00 p.m. ET and will be hosted by Donell Pons, M.Ed., MAT. Pons is currently the Literacy Coordinator at American International School of Utah, sits on the board of Decoding Dyslexia Utah, and is a tutor at the University of Utah Reading Clinic. She became a dyslexia expert and advocate after her husband and two of her four children were diagnosed with the learning disability.
“My mission is to identify, screen, and remediate every student who struggles with reading and engage every K-12 teacher in the reading process,” said Pons.
In the 60-minute webcast, Pons will address the details of dyslexia evaluations as well as how to serve students with dyslexia through individualized education programs and 504 plans. Pons will also share assistive technologies and instructional strategies for struggling readers and those who meet the profile for dyslexia. The webcast will include a live Q&A to answer questions submitted by viewers.
“We’re committed to raising awareness of dyslexia and providing resources that can be useful for educators and families,” said Tyson Smith, the President of Reading Horizons. “We want to empower them with information that will provide support for students with dyslexia.”
Educators interested in taking part in the webcast can register at ReadingHorizons.com/webcast to receive updates and a link to access the free presentation. Following the broadcast, educators may download a certificate of attendance.
This is the third webcast in a professional learning series for educators offered by Reading Horizons and hosted by Pons. The first webcast, Teaching Reading: The Number One Job of Every Educator, can be accessed here. The second installment, Dyslexia: What Every Educator Should Know, can be viewed here.
About Reading Horizons
For more than 30 years, Reading Horizons has been dedicated to perfecting a reading method that has proven successful for beginning readers, struggling readers, and students learning English. Reading Horizons products are research-based and use a multisensory system that provides explicit, systematic, and sequential decoding instruction. For more information, please visit ReadingHorizons.com.
Follett Opens New Office in Dubai
Company Continues to Expand its Global Presence,
Offers Additional Support to International Schools
MCHENRY, Ill., Jan. 10, 2017 — Follett today announced it has opened a new office in Dubai, further committing its support of international schools in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Middle East and North Africa (MENA) regions.
Specializing in global educational content, technology and services for American International, British International, and International Baccalaureate schools worldwide, Follett has unmatched experience with international schools of all curricula types. The Illinois-based company is now in nearly 150 countries.
“As the leading provider of library and classroom materials to private international schools in these important regions, our new Dubai office will provide greater service and logistical assistance to our customer base,” said Steve Siegel, Senior Vice President, Global Products and International, Follett School Solutions. “In addition, our expanded presence in the UAE also supports our engagement with regional bodies and government agencies as we grow and develop our business.”
As an example of Follett’s commitment to the region, the company recently hosted a three-day professional development workshop in Beirut, Lebanon. Customers learned how to derive more value from Follett’s products and services, and gained new skills from their peers.
“We have been very happy with the service provided by Follett,” said Mary Kelly Bello, Elementary Librarian, American School of Dubai. “They are more than a ‘book vendor’ as exemplified by the fantastic three-day workshop they sponsored for its customers across the Middle East. The new Dubai office is an exciting step forward for Follett, and we look forward to the continued relationship.”
Siegel said international schools commonly turn to Follett for:
- Shelf-ready PreK-12 books from more than 40,000 publishers, including major U.K. and international offerings;
- Destiny Library Manager and Destiny Resource Manager, library and resource management solutions that track, manage and analyze assets;
- eBooks, audiobooks, and interactive digital content; and
- Solutions that fully support Common Core, the British National Curriculum, International Baccalaureate (including PYP, MYP and DP), and other international curricula.
Last year, Follett announced it is the new, exclusive worldwide distributor for all International Baccalaureate publishing products. All content, plus a variety of additional resources hand-picked by Follett’s educational experts, are available to purchase on Titlewave, Follett’s online search and ordering tool.
For more information about Follett, visit www.follettlearning.com.
About Follett’s PreK-12 Business| follettlearning.com
Follett is the largest provider of educational materials and technology solutions to PreK-12 libraries, classrooms, learning centers and school districts in the United States, and a major supplier to educational institutions worldwide. Follett distributes books, reference materials, digital resources, eBooks and audiovisual materials, as well as pre-owned textbooks. Follett also is one of the leading providers of integrated educational technology for the management of physical and digital assets, the tracking, storing and analyzing of academic data, and digital learning environment tools for the classroom focusing on student achievement.
About Follett Corporation | follett.com
For more than 140 years, Follett has been a trusted partner to preK-12 schools, colleges and campus bookstores, taking care of the critical details that make it easier for schools to run, teachers to teach, students to learn and fans to celebrate. A leading provider of education technology, services and physical and digital content, Follett currently works with 70,000 schools and operates more than 1,250 local campus stores and 1,600 virtual stores. With the 2016 acquisition of Baker & Taylor, LLC, Follett’s reach also extends into the public library and global retail markets. Today Follett Corporation is the world’s largest single source of books, entertainment products, digital content and multi-media for libraries, schools and retailers. Follett is a $3.6 billion privately held company headquartered in Westchester, Illinois.
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Edgenuity Unveils UpSmart – the First Fully Adaptive Solution that Prepares Middle School Students to Succeed on State Assessments
Enables Students in Grade 6-8 to Demonstrate Standards Mastery through Instruction and Practice
Highly Personalized Tool Complements Core Curriculum
Scottsdale, AZ – January 10, 2017 – Edgenuity, a leading provider of online and blended learning, today announced the launch of UpSmart™, a supplemental solution designed to help all students in grades 6–8 demonstrate mastery of state standards in English language arts and math. Using a completely adaptive learning engine and technology-enhanced assessments, UpSmart provides the right level of instruction and practice on each topic for each student.
“Even great teachers using the best curriculum find that students struggle to transfer what they are taught in the classroom to high-stakes tests,” said Sari Factor, CEO of Edgenuity. “UpSmart is the ultimate teaching assistant. It combines the ability to reinforce skills that have just been taught in class, while returning critical standards-based performance data to teachers so they can help students in real-time.”
How it Works
UpSmart personalizes the learning environment for every student as a companion to the core curriculum or as a test-readiness program, and can be used in variety of settings – as part of a classroom-based blended learning program, in an advisory period or study skills class, or as homework.
UpSmart drives mastery of state standards in English language arts and math through:
- Targeted assessment: Places students into the optimal level through short, targeted assessments for each topic, then continuously evaluates what each student is ready to learn, providing the right instruction and practice.
- Adaptive practice and instruction: Features highly adaptive tasks to assess students’ mastery of skills and triggers appropriate support and instruction on each level as they progress through topics. The program continuously accumulates data about each student’s understanding and adjusts the difficulty of tasks and instruction as well as the amount of practice accordingly.
- Just-in-time instruction: Provides scaffolds as needed to help students complete a task and develop a deeper understanding of the skill being assessed. These scaffolds include topic introduction videos, hints, answer-specific feedback, and direct instruction and modeling.
- Motivation and rewards: Encourages students, through a dashboard and digital badging system, to monitor their own progress and celebrate their successful mastery of skills. Students accumulate trophies for productive behaviors like increasing time on task, showing persistence while working on a difficult assignment, or completing challenges.
Teachers can easily implement UpSmart as a supplement to their core curriculum, and the tool can be customized to align with each unique classroom scope and sequence. Teachers can assign, reorder, and prioritize topics in the way they prefer. In addition, real-time reporting on student progress helps teachers understand the skills and standards students have mastered, which students may be struggling, and how students can be grouped for re-teaching.
To learn more about UpSmart, please click here.
Edgenuity is a leading provider of digital curriculum and instructional services for the K-12 market. Our products are used in 9 of the top 15 U.S. school districts to help educators address their students’ most critical academic needs. School districts use Edgenuity online solutions to improve student outcomes, including Edgenuity’s Courseware™ for initial credit and credit recovery, Pathblazer® and MyPath™ for intervention and UpSmart™ to prepare for state assessments. For more information, visit Edgenuity.com.
Statement on Louisiana Appeals Court Ruling Regarding Charter School Funding
“Today’s decision by Louisiana’s First Circuit Court of Appeal which finds state funding for Type 2 Charter Schools in the state to be unconstitutional is deeply flawed and will undoubtedly be overturned by the state Supreme Court.
“As two of the court’s five judges declared in their dissent, “The majority’s tortured interpretation of article VIII, §13(B) [of the state Constitution] is not supported by the plain language of the article or any judicial interpretation.”
“The decision relies on an irrational finding that the constitution allows funding only for “city or parish school systems,” which is plainly not the case. The constitution and Louisiana law require that the state fund “all public elementary and secondary schools,” which includes charter schools, and the constitution requires only that the allocation of state funds be equitable.
“The lawsuit challenging charter school funding was brought by the teacher’s union – the Louisiana Association of Educators (LAE) – and is yet another indication of the extremes to which they will go to prevent parents from choosing the schools that will do the best job of educating their children.
“Charter schools were a godsend to the children of New Orleans, where the traditional public schools had been a basket case for years before Hurricane Katrina and collapsed completely after the storm. Charters immediately picked up where the old schools had failed, and rescued the futures of thousands of children. The LAE would take the state back to time to a when parents and children were trapped in failing schools and had no hope. It is urgent that the Louisiana Supreme Court take this case on appeal and overturn today’s ruling.”
About the Center for Education Reform
Founded in 1993, the Center for Education Reform aims to expand educational opportunities that lead to improved economic outcomes for all Americans — particularly our youth — ensuring that the conditions are ripe for innovation, freedom and flexibility throughout U.S. education.