The Report Card Is Dead.
Today’s secondary learners and their parents have 24/7 access to their progress through a device and a log-in account. Yet after 45 days, we insist on handing them a piece of paper telling them what they already know. It is time to let go. And it is also time to provide this access to elementary learners, parents and learning facilitators.
We understand our responsibility to prepare our learners for assimilation into the post-secondary world. Our colleges and universities are steeped in tradition and slow to change. While we take this road less traveled, we must continue to provide transcripts, credits and GPAs in our High Schools.
In the Information Age, though, we see a world where our learners and their parents have access to real-time, meaningful information about learning progression from kindergarten through grade 12.
Imagine if each of our learners had an e-portfolio containing their latest and best work that demonstrated their mastery of the learning standard. Imagine a world where our kindergarten learners posted work for their parents, grandparents, and others to view (think LinkedIn for learners). This e-portfolio might contain information about the learner and begin a digital footprint that will grow and evolve with them as they progress through the Central Experience.
- The partnership created between parents, the learners and the schools to post and review their best work,
- Our learners advocating for their best work to share with others, and
- The ability to access this information 24/7 from any device. (There are resources already making this possible: www.seesaw.me / www.artsonia.com)
Let’s go back to our LinkedIn example. Imagine a learner, even at a very young age, completing her LinkedIn profile.
We know, there are age restrictions, but imagine what the profile might contain:
- Profile - My resume as a second grader. Connections could also comment on my skills and endorsements. It would likely include my previous grades, teachers etc.
- Connections - Mom/Dad, Grandma/Grandpa, friends, coaches, NASA and the factory around the corner that helped with my science fair project.
- Jobs - What I am interested in pursuing. We all did this as children. Wouldn’t it be neat, as a high school student, to go back and see how my career aspirations have changed over the years? What if, based on my interests, information was readily available about my hopes and dreams?
- Interests - This would be similar to the information in "Jobs," but go further. I could connect with other students who love Legos, dance, or coding.
- My Work - This would be an addition, a twist on the traditional "LinkedIn." Here, our learners would post work that meets the standards. Each year, work would be replaced by grade level appropriate work as our learners mature.
We have the technology to make it so … only if we take the road less traveled.