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Florida's School District of Osceola County Uses Penda for Middle School Science ESY


The School District of Osceola County kicked off its extended school year (ESY) program on Monday, June 5, 2017. As value-add to current school subscriptions of Penda Learning, Penda Learning is supporting ESY grade recovery in science through it's product and customer service.

Planning - School district staff coordinating ESY efforts provided a ranked listing of the lowest 15 performing Florida Next Generation Sunshine State Standards (NGSSS) in science for grades 6, 7 and 8, along with student data for those students attending.

Preparation - Once data was received from the school district, Penda's Implementation & Support Services team went to work by aligning standards-based activities to target the identified standards. Activities were identified and put into queue for weekly automated assignment to students via Penda's Pacing Assistance Service (PAS). This means that weekly on Friday's, students will be assigned 8 - 10 Penda science activities assigned by PAS on the teacher's behalf. PAS takes the weight off of teachers shoulders by having to remember to assign activities, browse for relevant activities to assign that align to a standard, and go through the manual process of creating and deploying the assignment week after week.

Execution - Once activities are assigned by PAS, students can work at their own pace in one or more sessions, document their learning by completing a Penda note-taking guide while working on an activity, and retry any activity as many times as needed - each time students can use their note-taking guide (make changes or additions to their notes) to identify main ideas, supporting details, vocabulary, real-world application. With the goal in mind of achieving 80% or better on each activity, students will complete each activity and receive instant feedback screen-by-screen. This means students know exactly what they got correct or incorrect on an activity screen before they proceed to the next activity screen. Students want to earn the most number of points on each activity, since points unlock Penda game mechanics - customizing their avatar by unlocking an avatar wardrobe; traveling through each Penda world unlocking features, animations, and collecting rewards; "leveling up" into each of Penda's 14 different worlds to go places, do things, and interact; gaining status on the student grade-level leaderboard; challenging against up to 10 buddies the student has personally selected.

Delivery - Each Penda activity is automatically graded, not only providing the student with instant feedback, but also to take the weight off of teacher's shoulders, giving them back time for more important duties. Class Mastery Reports are automatically sent to teacher's email weekly to help them be proactive in targeted intervention by applying RtI strategies using Penda. Teachers can use the report data to create intervention groups on the platform. This allows teachers to then move students into an intervention group and assign specific activities to specific intervention groups for RtI level 2 support. Teachers can sign into their Penda account at any time (along with school administrators) to create and run custom reports for progress monitoring.

More About The School District of Osceola County:

With a 2016 - 2017 enrollment of 61,736 students, Osceola County Public Schools is the 14th largest school district in the State of Florida. Osceola is the only Central Florida school district with no schools on the Florida Department of Education’s lowest performing school list and currently has no “D” or “F” schools (excluding charters). Osceola County Public Schools has been in partnership with Penda Learning for 3 years. Penda Learning is used in several middle schools as a supplemental science resource and effective RtI tool.