Open to Learn

An Education, Society and Culture podcast
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What traits do we want to grow in our students so that they can flourish in a world where work may and likely will be very different? That’s the central question we ask in this Open to Learn Episode. We’re very happy to have Chris Powell, CEO and founder of Talmetrix, on this podcast. Talmetrix is a feedback and analytics company that helps organizations produce and leverage insights to improve employee and organizational performance. Given Chris’s background and knowledge on the workforce, we thought it’d be fun to talk about how education might be shaping kids for the future of work. I’m changing things up a bit for this interview. Joining me in the interview is my good friend Keith Millard. Keith is superintendent of Batavia Local Schools and a big picture thinker. His perspectives are quite helpful in this fun exchange of ideas and concepts. Chris PowellCEO of TalmetrixChris is an HR veteran with over 20 years of enabling high performing companies such as Deloitte, Marriott International, Voya and Scripps Networks Interactive. He brings this experience to Talmetrix to develop technology-enabled solutions that help improve engagement, performance, retention and business outcomes. Chris understands the dynamic relationship of how the employee experience impacts organizational performance and outcomes. Keith MillardSuperintendent of Batavia Local Schools SchoolsKeith serves as the superintendent of Batavia Local Schools. Keith has many years of experience as a classroom teacher, a building administrator, and a district leader. Professionally, his interests are in education policy and growing students. Other interests include music, technology, and learning. The one theme that emerges repeatedly in this episode is curiosity. Chris emphasizes the need for education to not just focus on the “what” when learning, but the “why”. That’s what is required of tomorrow’s workforce. And, arguably, required to fulfill our lives as humans. Fun Conversation Points and Questions in this Episode The importance of logic and reasoning in your everyday individual looking for a job. We need students to think logically and creatively. How do we find a balance between two sides of the brain? Do we need to find balance? It appears that state based accountability systems do a poor job of capturing / measuring the qualities needed for students to flourish in future job environments. What, then, should policy makers do? What do employers look for? The three Es. Education, experience, and exposure. Do we want to define success in education purely on the ability to become a worker and contributing to growth / GDP? What should the purpose of education be? What is the 5th Industrial Revolution? Does college really matter? (Yes. They help with learning agility.) How do we and our students handle distractions? How do we make all work meaningful? Can we? (Chris thinks we can.) Our Nostalgia Sponsor This episode of Open to Learn is sponsored by the Presidential Fitness Challenge.
Today we’re jumping into a conversation that focuses on the larger community that surrounds schools. Specifically, how might schools partner with their local community to help all students. Ife Bell is the former manager of community partnerships at Cincinnati Public Schools and current community and family engagement consultant. This delightful conversation dives into how community partnerships work, why they’re important, and some of the challenges that come with human systems. Additional Resources Cincinnati Public Schools Community WebsiteIfe BellAbre Community Engagement Our Nostalgia Sponsor This OTL Nostalgia Sponsor is the $1 Carnation Gram.
Marni Durham is the Assistant Superintendent of Butler Tech Career Technical Schools. In this podcast, we cover a variety of topics ranging from building excellent teams to the excitement of career technical education and the role of edginess in education. Questions Explored in this Podcast A sample of questions and concepts: Should edginess be applied to education?How has Career Tech Education changed in the past decade? What should Career Tech look like in the coming decade?What level of risk-taking should educators be willing to take when it comes to growing kids?Building a tribe of strong coworkers is very key to the success of educators. We should be teaching this to students as well. Team supports are so critical to achieving goals and enjoying life as you achieve those goals.What is “The 5th Day Experience”? What does it mean to give students the liberty to decide how they’re going to learn and grow every Friday of the week?
This is the first episode in a podcast about learning. That is a phenomenally broad topic. But that’s okay. It lends itself to fun interviews and good stories. And opens the door to learning within learning.
Blog Post— 5 Min Runtime Using Student Support to Help with 1:1 InitiativesAs a former Director of Technology in a 1:1 school, one of my central concerns centered on keeping devices functional and lasting. With some 11,000 Chromebook spread over numerous campuses, how would I provide support to the occasional breaks, wear and tear, and general grime? My tech team was small. And my financial resources were dedicated to devices. The solution? Students. Student Support Desk to the Rescue Borrowing ideas from several friendly school districts (a big shoutout to Loveland Schools), we worked to create a system where students were the primary help in supporting the tech that, in turn, supported their instruction! A win-win. While refined over the years, the process worked incredibly well in keeping our district costs manageable while ensuring Chromebooks lasted throughout the years. The Set-Up Supplies were key. This included: Microfiber cloths Rubbing alcohol Toolsets (screwdrivers, tweezers, etc.) Compressed Air Also included was a small stock of Chromebook components. The most common elements to break. This usually meant: Computer screens Keyboards Trackpads We also a generous amount of already broken Chromebooks we cannibalized for parts. Students & Training Our district had students as young as 3rd grade and as old as 12th grade. For some, the support desk was an elective. For others, it was a before or after school club. In all cases, students trained on how to clean and maintain Chromebooks, repair broken Chromebooks, and track Chromebooks through an inventory system. Throughout the year, students also worked through a course that covered subjects such as customer support, GSuite 101, and a portfolio project. The Logistics When a Chromebook broke, it came into our ticketing system. Students would grab the Chromebook, perform a fix, and replace it in the cart. Additionally, students would complete a thorough cleaning of each classroom’s Chromebooks every 2 weeks. This kept Chromebooks running longer and provided them with an opportunity to see if any devices were malfunctioning. How Did I Work? Extremely well! Breakage rates were minimal, and the student support crew was able to cover nearly all issues that arose in a given year. From a district’s perspective, students learned a useful skillset and supported their learning. Final Thoughts This is a bit of a simplification of the process. I was fortunate to have a very talented team refine procedures, take ownership, provide vast amounts of support to students. Their help was critical to the success of implementing a 1:1 program in the district.
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Podcast Details

Created by
Abre Discover
Podcast Status
Aug 28th, 2019
Latest Episode
Jun 5th, 2020
Release Period
2 per year
Avg. Episode Length
37 minutes

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