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Bryan Plumb, CEO of Bee Digital

Kirby's phase-shifter prediction on remote learning

Mar 20, 2020 1:53 am

You could say that education technology is having it's moment right now.

Right as parents everywhere are realizing how hard it is for teachers to do their jobs...

A portion of teachers are realizing why colleagues, supervisors, etc, have been yelling from the rooftops about the amazing education technology available to support remote learning. Learning by necessity.

I wanted to share one take I saw from on LinkedIn that closely aligns with what I'm seeing anecdotally from teachers and school leaders.

It comes from Kirby Salerno, Founder & Principal of BroadReach EdTech Advisors. He laid out a two-phrase process, which I can corroborate, as I'm seeing it already play-out almost exactly as he describes it:

For what's it's worth, here's my take on what's happening with schools right now.

Phase I - Informal/Enrichment. This is where we are now. Schools are closed, some are operating virtually but many are not and planning to provide enrichment resources to parents to keep kids learning and engaged at home. This is not formal virtual learning.

Phase II - Formal Virtual Learning. This phase will begin for most schools in 1-2 weeks. Schools are realizing that the 2-3 week closures that have been announced are likely to be extended, potentially for months or the rest of the school year. They now need to figure out how teaching and learning happens remotely for the final months of the school year. This means teachers will be teaching the curriculum, not just sending enrichment home to parents.

The implications of this transition from Phase I to Phase II are enormous. Schools that aren't set up to run virtually will need to figure out how to do so in a matter of days.

The one thing I'll say for this is that teachers will, for the most part, make it happen. The big loss here, unfortunately, will be for the kids who need the social support of the adults at school in order to succeed. I'm worried about those kids.

However, he's spot on that the initial switch to remote learning is a 1-3 week "survival mode" period, followed by a re-grouping and roll-out of more formal plans. For what it's worth, I think the "survival mode" has happened quite smoothly from the anecdotes I'm seeing from colleagues and friends.

Have questions about what I'm seeing from my perspective as all this happens? Or want me to take a look at something you're sharing with schools or teachers? Reply and let me know.

Thanks for reading,

Gerard Dawson

avatar Andrew Hill
I agree, especially for diverse learners. LiftEd is designed to support the interdisciplinary school team providing individualized instruction, support, and using data to drive decisions for the 1 in 5, with learning disabilities or differences. Our school partners have looked to us for parent enrichment resources but the next phase is where we've been figuring out how best we can extend our platform to support actual instruction where it will take human intervention/support @ home (i.e. parent with training resources) to actually deliver instruction for learners with mod-severe disabilities that need more than accommodations/modificaitons/or "light" differentiation...rather, tier 2 and tier 3 supports, behavior management & support, data driven intervention, positive reinforcement techniques - things that we're designed to handle when a trained paraprofessional, special educator, therapist, or other specialist is generally in physical proximity to the learning.
avatar Andrew Hill (our old site
avatar Gerard Dawson
Andrew, thanks for the comment. That's a huge challenge that you're addressing. Everyone is going through a massive, accelerated education. Maybe a bright side, in the situation you're describing, is that it requires everyone to get up to speed on all it takes to support diverse learners. Hoping you can keep me updated on what you're noticing as the situation progresses.
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