“The fact is that given the challenges we face, education doesn’t need to be reformed – it needs to be transformed.” – Ken Robinson, The Element: How Finding Your Passion Changes Everything
Transforming education is not a new topic, and it’s something the team at Lumen Touch has been working toward for a long time. Many of the things the pandemic has forced schools to contend with are those things that should have already been in place –virtual classroom technology and comprehensive connectivity, for instance.
Education Is the Driver of Economic Development
The more educated our workforce is – the more educated our community is – the better lifestyles are going to be for all workers. Income is driven by education, as is the well-being of the citizens of a community. Unfortunately, our education system has been stagnant for decades. As a result, we have fallen to 25th in math proficiency in the world; 17th in science proficiency; and 14th in reading. To turn that around we must:
- Transform the system
- Personalize the learning
- Discover the child
- Create the environment
Teachers Should Be Engaged with Every Aspect of the Transformation
We need to start listening to the teachers.
Among all the academic stakeholders, teachers are the least likely to believe their opinions count at work. But during the pandemic, and in a post-pandemic world, teachers will be much like frontline healthcare workers – the ones who can tell us what we need to survive and thrive. What do teachers want?
- Less bureaucracy and more quality teaching time
- Adaptations to meet individual student challenges
- More personal accountability
- Personal development
Ironically, if we’d have met teachers demands to have greater access to classroom-based tech before the coronavirus, the transition to distance learning would have been so much smoother. It’s time to completely change the way we engage with teachers. They need to be part of the leadership teams and part of the decision making. They need to be part of the redesign team top to bottom, inside and out.
Leadership and Technology Will Pave the Way to a Brighter Future
The pandemic, with its disruption, is forcing us to accelerate toward where we should have already been. In other words, we don’t need to transform education because of the coronavirus – the coronavirus just forced the transformation we’ve needed for decades. We need to take the opportunity being presented.
Leadership must protect, embrace, and support agents of change. Instead of designing homogenized schools, we need to design schools that reflect our communities. Schools should be community centers, audaciously planned to utilize capacity in ways that serve everyone. Leaders must:
- Bring design to life
- Remove barriers
- Create accountability
- Prepare for pushback
- Continuously pursue the dream
To succeed, integrated technology will be required in all aspects of school design and education delivery – in architecture, connectivity, safety, wall space, room space, site utilization, hardware and software, furnishings, and more.
Leaders must be outcome-driven, willing to do more with less; they must become moguls of data analytics and bring more stakeholders to the table, including volunteers, vendors, and business partners, for they are all part of the education community.
Now is the time to shift the curve – from classroom batching to personalized engagement; from brick-and-mortar to project-based virtual learning; from the family to the community; from empowered administration to empowered students and teachers; from textbook to device; from analog to digital; from teaching to wellbeing; from grades to learning trajectory – from INSTRUCTIVISM to CONSTRUCTIVISM.
Lumen Touch is dedicated to being part of the future of education. We focus on improving the learning opportunities for children with measurable outcomes. We have been diligently listening to educators and experts to develop and improve our all-in-one solution. We’re discovering through this pandemic how critical it is to have something like Lumen Touch in place for a seamless transition from the classroom to home education without missing a moment. In a potential hybrid-style future, in which split schedules are the norm and education time is divided between school and home, this is critical. We are in the process of expanding our services to all 50 states. If your school is preparing for a permanent change in instruction and delivery, get in touch.