The Henry County School system in Georgia is trying to implement “personalized learning” across its schools, through a model that gives students big decision-making power and allows individual schools broad autonomy. One of the models being rolled out in Henry County is playing out at Luella Middle School, where every Monday, students go to “What I Need” sessions where they receive extra academic help in different subjects. Students like Hailey Miller, 13, give their preferences on what “WIN” they want to attend, and receive guidance from teachers who review their choices. Hailey can receive one-on-one help from teachers in the WIN sessions, or work in a small group, or complete tasks on a computer. In addition to the extra support, Luella Middle School also gives students unusual freedom to work at their own academic pace. Students are given “playlists,” or schedules of their learning in different academic subjects with plans for how they plan to show mastery in those subjects – either through tests, or performance tasks, or other means.
Coverage of the implementation of college- and career-ready standards and the use of personalized learning is supported in part by a grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Education Week retains sole editorial control over the content of this coverage.