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Learning Technology Grant Winner: Norwood - Norfolk School

Award Years: 2015-2018

Proposal Abstract

Norwood-Norfolk Central School District, a high needs district serving 1,000 prekindergarten through 12 grade students in rural Northern New York, proposes to implement a $150,000 Learning Technology Grant to improve student achievement in English Language Arts (ELA) in its high school (a Focus school) and middle school (a LAP school).

Our project will provide all 6ththrough 12th grade ELA teachers with the tools, training and sustained support to develop their classrooms into blended learning environments. Mobile devices will be purchased for the classrooms, providing means for students to engage in 1:1 computing for lessons, research and practice. Teachers will be provided professional development on how to integrate technology into curricular activities, as well as on the collection, organization and analysis of student assessment data to inform their teaching and drive instructional decisions. The project will enable students and teachers to work in a collaborative electronic environment using online learning management and content systems. Educators will be supported by instructional technology curriculum coaches and professional learning communities, as well as through professional development opportunities provided by the St. Lawrence-Lewis BOCES regional Model Schools program and other experts in the field.

Focus of technology-embedded content development will be literacy, specifically as it relates to Common Core ELA standards for Reading Informational Text. Successful project implementation will result in attainment by June 2018 of our key objectives of: (1) increasing our Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) performance index in ELA by a total of 10 points; increasing the percentage of grades 6-8 students achieving proficiency on the state ELA assessments by 10%; (3) transitioning 100% of our high and middle school ELA classrooms to blended classrooms, thus providing 100% of our 6th through 12th grade students access to 1:1 mobile devices for learning; (4) supporting 100% of the ELA teachers in the design, piloting and refinement of technology-integrated lessons (a minimum of five curricular units by each teacher), and (5) implementation of an online learning management system for administration and analysis of interim assessments for instructional improvement (data-driven instruction).

Our project will result in the creation of the district’s very first blended learning environments. A primary intended result is that this project will lay the groundwork and support for a district-wide shift in all disciplines to blended environments and the incorporation of strategies supporting the goals of the Board of Regents’ Statewide Learning Technology Plan, which envisions standards-based, accessible digital content supporting all curricula for all learners and the proficiency of all students, teachers and administrators in the use of technology for learning.