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McREL ed-tech partner wins Award of Excellence

Tech & Learning Magazine’s 2019 Award of Excellence announcement included a McREL ed-tech partner: Discovery Education. The magazine gave the company a top nod for its product Discovery Education Experience, the latest iteration of their popular Streaming Plus service, in the Best Re-Invention of a Classic Legacy Technology category.

In Discovery Education’s press release about the award, they mention that the instructional strategies they offer within the product are “aligned to McREL International’s 6-Phase Model of Learning.” This model uses research and science on the brain and memory to explain how students learn, retain, recall, and apply information in the classroom, and provides a sequence of instruction that teachers can use to maximize learning.

Discovery Education is “laser-focused on creating innovative, educator-centric, digital experiences that support educators’ efforts to improve student achievement,” said Pete Weir, Discovery Education’s chief product officer.

Discovery Education Experience’s standards-aligned content is assignable and can be bookmarked and saved for later use and remixed to meet the varying needs of diverse student populations in a safe and secure environment. The service’s ever-growing digital content collections, as well as a library of immersive virtual field trips, are drawn from trusted partners.

Read the Tech & Learning announcement

Read the Discovery Education press release

Learn more about McREL’s 6-Phase Model for Learning

McREL to evaluate Discovery Education’s nationwide STEM initiative

Discovery Education recently announced the creation of the STEM Careers Coalition and has contracted McREL to perform a multi-year evaluation of the initiative’s impact. In this news item published by Yahoo Finance, Lori McFarling, Discovery Education’s president of corporate partnerships, explains that the project aims to provide free digital content to 10 million students by 2025 to prepare them for the science, technology, engineer, and mathematics work that will be ever more significant in the future. The coalition, which includes some of the biggest names in American business and industry, is reaching out to families in public, private, charter, and tribal schools to build support for STEM education and careers.

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Abla offers expert advice on connectedness to Education Week readers

Cheryl Abla, a McREL expert on professional learning and effective instruction, participated in the Classroom Q&A With Larry Ferlazzo blog, hosted by Education Week, on the question of, “What does ‘student engagement’ mean, and what can we do to promote it in our classrooms?” To Cheryl, “student engagement means connectedness . . . it’s where attitudes and skill sets collide.” She provided seven research-inspired tactics that teachers can put into play ASAP. Several other national experts contributed great ideas, too.

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McREL plays key role in GG4L student safety grant

The education technology publication THE Journal continued its coverage of a national school safety grant program offered by Global Grid for Learning (GG4L) that involves McREL as an program evaluation partner. Through GG4L, schools can get free access to 45 “curated” products that support seven areas of student safety: emergency preparedness, emotional and behavioral health, digital and online safety, physical campus security, physical health and wellness, engaged community, and healthy culture. As schools use the products, McREL will conduct evaluation studies of the products’ efficacy and outcomes. The journal quoted GGFL’s CEO, Robert Iskander, as saying, “Data-driven, evidence-informed decision making is essential for those charged with school safety and student wellness.”

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SC superintendent gives McREL evaluation high marks

A South Carolina superintendent up for his annual board review told the local NBC affiliate that whatever score he gets, it’ll be fair because it comes from McREL’s Central Office and Superintendent Evaluation System.

“I’ve used this instrument in other places, and it’s a nationally known model that’s highly reliable and valid,” Dr. Eddie Ingram of the Berkeley County School District told WCBD-TV.

Ingram predicted he’ll get a “proficient” rating, same as the previous year, which he thought was fair because he’s “still developing in some areas,” such as how to increase personalized learning.

McREL’s Central Office and Superintendent Evaluation System is based on research and analysis of leadership practices that are strongly connected with higher levels of student achievement and organizational improvement.

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