Successful Practices Network and Penda Learning Partner to Support Educators in Delivery of Rigorous, Evidence-Based Online Science Instruction
Aug 06, 2020

Educators expand online teaching skills with professional development from Successful Practices Network and put best practices to use with the Penda Learning digital science platform to ensure all students achieve science success even when remote learning.


LOVELAND, Colo., Aug. 5, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- As schools prepare to re-open, most struggle supporting some form of digital learning— whether blended or fully online. Spring school closures highlighted that many teachers lack expertise teaching remotely and many districts do not have the digital learning programs in place to support high quality remote instruction. The Successful Practices Network (SPN) and Penda Learning have partnered to provide member districts with a powerful combination of professional development in remote instruction best practices and a digital, game-based platform to deliver rigorous online science instruction to students grade ­3­–10.

"Blended learning will be essential to supporting student success in the 2020-21 academic year," said Brad Baird, President of Learning 2020, parent company of Penda Learning. "Penda Learning is proven to support at-home, independent learning of core science concepts. Our partnership with SPN ensures that educators have the knowledge, skills and confidence to teach effectively remotely using Penda Learning and other digital learning platforms."

Districts where Penda Learning was in use prior to school closures were able to transition to remote science instruction easily using the platform. In Duval County Public Schools (DCPS), a large district in Florida with more than 130,000 students, engagement in science instruction actually increased rather than students experiencing learning loss. Pre- and post-pandemic, DCPS:

  • Realized a 192% increase in active students, as teachers leveraged Penda Learning for core science instruction delivery

  • Documented that students logged 2x more usage (hours), doubling science instruction time and independent practice compared to previous academic years

  • Saw a 137% increase in the number of activities assigned to students compared to previous academic years as teachers turned to Penda Learning to transition to distance learning

DCPS has used Penda Learning since 2017 to supplement, enrich and differentiate science instruction. Built on an interactive gaming platform, Penda Learning's standards-aligned activities motivate students to learn independently yet support teachers in monitoring progress and providing interventions remotely. Matthew Campese, Executive Director of Natural and Social Sciences for DCPS, shared: "DCPS' transition to distance learning has been an all-hands-on-deck process. Our four-year partnership with Penda Learning has proven to be paramount in facilitating the 'switch' from classroom use of Penda to distance learning use. Penda Learning has been invaluable in helping teachers maintain instruction and helping students learn in a fun and engaging way."

DCPS students engaged in more science learning during school closure and they made gains in science achievement year-over-year.

Adding professional development in remote instruction by SPN will improve educators' ability to provide rigorous, engaging science instruction online and in-person using Penda Learning. According to Ray McNulty, President of SPN, "Our professional learning around effective online teaching strategies helps educators maximize the features and tools Penda Learning has built in to support remote instruction. It's great to have a platform such as Penda Learning to show teachers the strategies in action in a digital learning tool."

As schools prepare to reopen for learning, SPN and Penda Learning are supporting districts across the country in implementing rigorous and engaging online science instruction. Learn more at

About Learning 2020
Learning 2020, parent company to Penda Learning, identifies pressing, unfilled needs within the K-12 education market and develops technology solutions that solve these challenges in innovative and cost-effective ways that will positively impact teaching and learning. Formed in early 2019 by Brad Baird and Bill Tudor, experienced education technology entrepreneurs, Learning 2020's current focus is on ensuring all students have access to high-quality science and math instruction whether learning at home or in school.

About Successful Practices Network (SPN)
Founded in 2003, Successful Practices Network (SPN) has worked with schools and districts around the United States to ensure a rigorous, relevant education system for ALL students. SPN's work focuses on supporting the use of best practices and focused data analysis to drive systemic improvements.