Competency-based Education

New Student-Facing Continua Blocks

Toni Fonseca, ELA Teacher at Central Academy in the West Ada School District, took on a project to create a student-facing version of the ELA competencies and continua for her students: "In an attempt to better understand the competencies myself, I undertook the endeavor of tearing them apart and then putting them back together. [...]

Open Resources

We are proud to share our work and learning through our Open Resources. This practice embodies our core value of transparency and supports a community of educators in their search for transformative resources and design inspiration.  A few years ago, we created a space on our website to share our Learning What Matters competency [...]

Voter Registration at Building 21 Allentown: An Indicator of Civic Mastery

What does mastery of an academic skill look like? In education, we are constantly endeavoring to find the best ruler by which to measure student growth towards proficiency in fundamental skills. We believe that the best opportunities for authentically assessing the progress of our students occur when we push them to apply their skills [...]

Competency Works blog features Building 21

Earlier this month, Building 21 was featured on the Competency Works blog. Tom Gaffey, Building 21's Chief Instructional Technologist, authored a piece that highlights our Learning What Matters Framework and details a few of our introductory professional development activities. We are honored and excited to share our work on a [...]

Reimaging School

Reimaging school. As easy as riding a bike, right? We think it’s more like setting aside what you know about riding a bike and learning how to ride in a completely different way. Which has been done before. Check out Destin from Smarter Every Day and The Backwards Brain Bicycle. [...]

Reflections on the Summer Design Institute

In July, we hosted 90 partners and colleagues for the Summer Design Institute, three days of learning, designing, and growing as professionals and adult learners within the Building 21 Network. We welcomed teachers and administrators from across the country, as well as many partners and supporters from across the region and beyond. This year’s [...]

“Do our students have a fair chance?”

“Do our students have a fair chance?” Reimagining the high school transcript and the impact on college admissions As college recruiters sit down to review applicants and choose their incoming freshmen class, how will a mastery-based transcript stand next to a traditional transcript and GPA from another school? Will those around [...]

By |2020-02-20T20:42:17-05:00April 5th, 2019|Competency-based Education|0 Comments

The Double-Edged Sword of Transparency

One of the challenges we face when trying to innovate in traditional public school systems is the higher level of scrutiny required to immediately prove that what we are doing is actually working and is good for students. Changing from traditional grading structures to competency-based scoring does not itself solve the problems our schools [...]

Does Content Matter

There are two questions that I have thought about often and deeply over the last 5 years while trying to create an innovative school model. The first is asked by every student at least once in their educational career (and by my own middle school and high school children more often than I would like), [...]

By |2019-04-30T12:44:54-04:00February 14th, 2019|Competency-based Education|0 Comments

Building 21: Designing a Network for Competency-Based Education

This post originally appeared at GETTINGSMART on July 8, 2018.  By Chip Linehan Our current system’s narrow definitions of student success value content knowledge over the skills and mindsets needed for students to thrive in today’s rapidly changing world. On the other hand, next-generation graduation requirements that measure and credit a broader and deeper array [...]

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