A total of 42 representatives from the Illinois Association of School Administrators’ 21 regions, along with two advisory members, gathered in Springfield on October 8 to continue their work to create a vision for the future of education in Illinois.
The initial Vision 20/20 Initiative subcommittee meeting on June 6, 2013, led to the following focal points for discussion:
- The initiative focus is student‐centered.
- The initiative is a forward‐thinking process designed to unite the Illinois education community around a vision to improve education in Illinois.
- The initiative will document the consensus among Illinois educators for creating a desired future vision of education in Illinois.
- The initiative will provide a common voice from the Illinois education community to guide state policy.
As a member of the Student Learning and Assessment Subcommittee, University Lab Schools have been part of the discussion on state standardized testing, one-to-one computing, and accountability measures. The consensus thus far on these issues is broken down to a rough draft of principles:
- Public education is responsible for preparing students for college and careers.
- Quality education requires high standards and expectations.
- Ultimate accountability for student learning rests in the local school district.
- Partnerships between school districts, non‐profits, businesses, community colleges, and health and human service organizations will lead to healthier, better‐educated children.
- Technology as a tool can enhance and augment the teaching and learning processes in our schools.
- Technology is an integral component in providing high quality programs.
As such, Illinois must:
- Report measures of district‐level college and career attainment in publicly available statewide education databases.
- Revise the state assessment system to balance state‐level accountability with minimal interference with instructional programming.
- Sponsor an examination, by a joint‐committee of educational leaders (including members of IASA, IPA, IASB, and IASBO), of current uses of technology. The joint‐committee will be tasked with documenting best practices as a road map for the use of technology in Illinois.
As such, local districts must:
- Implement appropriate timelines for funding and acquiring digital resources.
- Provide students with more diverse learning opportunities.
The Vision 20/20 Initiative will meet again in January when each subcommittee will review their guiding principles. More information regarding this initiative can be found at IllinoisVision2020.org.