District Administration honors Jurupa Unified School District in its 2018 School of TechXcellence program.
(December 1, 2018) — District Administration magazine is honoring 18 schools and districts for education technology initiatives as part of the Schools of TechXcellence program. This is the second year for this national recognition program.
TechXcellence was created by District Administration magazine, and sponsored by HP and Intel, to recognize schools that have implemented innovative, effective and replicable technology programs that contribute meaningfully to student or operational success. The December 2018 honorees were selected by the program's judges from numerous nominations, and reflect programs that demonstrate effective and replicable success.
The 18 schools and districts honored in this round of TechXcellence—from 11 states—have programs that incorporate technology powered by Intel, including laptops, tablets and 3D printers.
To improve education outcomes in a district where 78 percent of students need supplemental educational services and 36 percent are English language learners, Jurupa USD implemented a 1-to-1 initiative called Digital Gateway.
The district has helped close equity gaps by equipping all students in grades 2 through 12 with Chromebooks and providing guidance in digital citizenship. Students, who keep their devices through the summer, are encouraged to develop literacy skills, cultivate strong work habits and build self-efficacy related to technology. The initiative also bolsters college and career readiness.
Implementation required long-term planning and investment from the district, which collaborated extensively with stakeholders and upgraded networks. During a pilot program, teachers identified faculty and student needs, anticipated potential rollout issues, and became familiar with various edtech platforms.
“Just as JUSD explores the specific learning needs of each child, the district supports the individual development of every adult learner on staff," says Paula Ford, assistant superintendent. “The rollout required both broad and personalized teacher PD—not a one-size-for-all approach."
Digital Gateway PD's framework was developed at the district's annual Summer Jam Conference, where more than 300 teachers and staff attended breakout sessions that ranged from learning digital classroom fundamentals to honoring student achievement with digital badges.
Initial PD familiarized educators with new edtech through how-to videos, online training, video conferences, social media chats and visits from technology coaches. The district provides ongoing PD for teachers, classified staff, certificated staff and principals. Training for each group is targeted, differentiated and job-embedded.
“The Digital Gateway will remain fundamental to preserving technological inclusion and ensuring that every JUSD student is prepared for college and careers," says Ford.