An ambitious plan to transform learning
In 2009, leaders within Gwinnett County Public Schools embarked on a large initiative to identify its strategic priorities for the next decade. The effort engaged all key stakeholders, including community leaders, higher education leaders, business leaders, teachers, the district’s central office, students, and parents to identify priorities. They ultimately identified a host of priorities under 10 distinct categories representing all key components of the school district, including students, parents and guardians, employees, curriculum, instruction and assessment, among others.
“When we looked at the priorities, many of them were dependent on the expected use of technology – even those that didn’t explicitly dictate technology. In addition, many of our priorities evolved around transforming teaching and learning. We wanted teachers to be able to differentiate instruction based on student personal needs, allow students to personalize learning options, and expand beyond the classroom to make learning accessible from home,” explains Tricia Kennedy, Executive Director for eCLASS Transformation at Gwinnett County Public Schools. “Based on these findings and objectives, our school board and Superintendent along with his cabinet identified a clear need for an instructional platform to support our execution against these priorities.”
In November 2010 a special purpose local option sales tax was approved by Gwinnett County voters. This sales tax provided the school district with the critical funding to embark on the eCLASS initiative. As part of this effort, Gwinnett invested in the Brightspace LMS to serve as a central hub for eCLASS. The goal was to provide a one-stop shop for digital content, resources and communication for teachers, students, and parents.