Over the past 15+ years, we’ve conducted hundreds of charter school evaluation and renewal visits in over 10 states. We’ve learned a lot through this work. These are just three of our lessons learned:
In 2018 and 2019, The Learning Collective partnered with Discovery Charter School (DCS) on a couple projects. We developed a three-year academic plan, beginning in the 2018-19 school year, and evaluated the extent to which that plan was implemented during the course of the plan’s first year. In the summer of 2019 we then worked with the board, school leaders and teachers to develop a multi-year strategic plan. In 2021, based in part on The Learning Collective’s work, DCS’ charter was renewed for an additional three years!
2019 was a productive years for The Learning Collective. We led strategic planning projects with some new clients, such as Discovery Charter School and the Beginning with Children education network in New York, and with authorizers such as those through our partnership with Oklahoma Public School Resource Center.
The Learning Collective recently evaluated four charter homeschool / independent study schools. It was interesting and illuminating work. The student body of homeschools varies greatly – from affluent suburban kids to world-class athletes to young people in and out of incarceration.
Here is some of what we at The Learning Collective learned …
Adam Aberman of The Learning Collective is the moderator of the panel: “Charter Authorization: Road to Greatness or Mediocrity?” This is part of the inaugural 2017 Independent Charter School Symposium.
Charter school authorizers are increasingly partnering with consultants. We see this in our ongoing and renewed partnerships with these and other charter authorizers: Charter Schools Institute of the State University of New York, Washington State Charter School Commission, New Jersey Department of Education and Nevada State Public Charter School Authority.
The Learning Collective has partnered with Academy of the City on a number of projects over the past four years from charter renewal application assistance to school quality reviews. It is the strategic planning process we developed and facilitated, as well as the final product, of which we are the most proud.
Singularity University was started by some of Silicon Valley’s top companies – Google, Cisco and others – to teach individuals, businesses, institutions, investors, NGOs and governments how to leverage the newest technologies to benefit mankind. Singularity published this article, written by Nathaniel Calhoun and based on an interview with Adam Aberman (both Members of The Learning Collective), on the failure of technology in public schools to build students’ critical thinking skills.
Before Adam Aberman founded The Learning Collective, he launched and ran ICouldBe.org, an e-mentoring, career development, and college guidance system for low-income teens. Teens select their e-mentors, from around the country, with whom to work on 100% web-based projects over the course of an academic year. ICouldBe.org has served about 20,000 teens with about 10,000 online volunteers.
Learn more in a Vassar Quarterly article featuring Adam and his work.