On January 25, 2018, 20 Central Oregon public school administrators--selected as the next set of School Retool Fellows--will learn techniques to “hack” new ideas and solutions for their schools. The middle- and high school principals and vice principals, represented in this second Oregon cohort of the School Retool program hail from four unique school districts across the region: Culver, Redmond, Crook County, and Bend/LaPine.
Thanks to the leadership of the High Desert Education Service District (HDESD), this new cohort quickly filled to capacity with 20 total participants. HDESD CTE director Angie Mason-Smith, elaborates, “Many of our schools have started to do work around design thinking, this program will give them the tool kit they need to start working toward their goals and push for deeper learning in their schools. The region is excited about this opportunity, not only for the professional development but creating cohorts or collaboration groups to continue this work moving forward.”
Designed in partnership by Stanford University’s d. School K12 Lab and design firm IDEO, and based on research by the Hewlett Foundation, School Retool is a three-month professional development fellowship that helps school leaders to redesign their school cultures to foster innovation in teaching and learning. It addresses challenges principals face modernizing educational models to keep pace with the demands of a rapidly changing world. Principals and school leaders engage in a collaborative series of workshops and “hack” cycles within their schools that create and celebrate opportunities for Deeper Learning -- a set of six research-supported competencies that directly benefit students by putting them at the center of the work. School Retool cohorts are active in Chicago, Colorado, Dallas, Idaho, Michigan, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oakland, Ohio, Oregon, Puget Sound, Rhode Island, San Diego, San Francisco, Sonoma County, Virginia, Washington, D.C., and Western Pennsylvania.
“School Retool is a critical building block in Construct's piece of Innovate Initiatives, a series of integrated programs, building one on the other, that expand the capacity for creativity and innovation in schools. Allowing educators and school leaders to practice new mindsets and behaviors, working across regions and creating supportive new peer groups--these steps are helping Oregon school communities to realize a tangible path toward 21st-century success for all our students." said Gina Condon, founder of Construct Foundation.
Construct Foundation, participating school districts, and the HDESD combined resources to bring School Retool to serve these education leaders in Oregon, with Construct subsidizing participation costs. Both HDESD and Innovate Oregon helped ignite interest in potential Central Oregon administrators and schools.
Construct is part of a three-year onboarding program offered by Stanford, for local partners who are looking to convene School Retool in their state. Stanford will be engaged throughout this onboarding process, ensuring ongoing training and fidelity measures are being met or exceeded.