A Day in the Life of Sandra—a Director of Instruction for a District
Meet Sandra, an education administrator for her district.
Sandra wants to help all students in her district reach their potential. Her main priorities are:
- Maximizing student equity, inclusion, and success
- Making sure that the test scores for her district are strong
- Optimizing teachers’ productivity
- Finding efficiencies to improve return on investment
Sandra has a big task and lots of stakeholders. Let’s look at her day and how she uses the Brightspace platform to help achieve these goals.
First thing: Prepare for the budget meeting
There is a big budget meeting later this week. Sandra wants to share some ideas to help reduce costs and improve their ROI by using the Brightspace platform.
- Check on tool usage and encourage adoption of new tools
- Sandra can see what tools are being used and by whom. She identifies which teachers are not using the tools and reaches out to them to find out what they need to be comfortable trying them out.
- Eliminate duplicate systems and standardize the teacher toolset to get all learning onto one platform with Brightspace.
- With Brightspace, there is no need to have separate systems for portfolios, professional development, gradebooks, content management, homework, activities, and parent portals. They can reduce costs and frustration by doing all this from Brightspace. They can also set up single-sign-on to increase use with Brightspace and other programs that they are using.
- Leverage existing content. Create it once and easily share it across the district.
- Teachers can seamlessly add content from publishers, districts, third party storage services, as well as share teacher-developed content.
- Reduce costs and increase content ROI by using the Brightspace platform to effectively implement the district’s Open Education Resources strategy.
- Brightspace provides an easy way to curate low-cost Open Education Resource materials by creating libraries to organize who gets what, curating quality with rating systems, and providing data to let you know what is being used by whom.
Late morning: Develop a plan for how to avoid losing class time during unexpected school closures
It seems that every year there are more days of school missed for unexpected reasons or because of inclement weather. It’s become a big problem because there aren’t enough options to make up the missed time and schools don’t want to overlap with summer school time. Sandra is on a committee to brainstorm how to solve for this.
- With Brightspace, teachers can continue teaching and students can continue learning—no matter where they are or what the weather is.
- D2L is a leader for virtual learning, and it’s clear why. Brightspace provides course material online and makes it possible for students to submit assignments online, and videos, including video-based assessments, which can be recorded and embedded directly into a course. Teachers and students can participate using any device and even access content offline if they don’t have Wi-Fi.
- Teachers can do a quick post on the Activity Feed with instructions for the day and open up a Virtual Classroom to connect with students face-to-face.
Noon: Enjoy lunch and brainstorm for the next PD day
Sandra is always looking for ways to help her team improve. Over lunch, she brainstorms with a colleague about what they will cover during their next PD day.
- They have some new professional learning modules that are easy to integrate into Brightspace and promote to teachers.
- They also discuss promoting Brightspace as a great place to centralize all their learning tools, including integrations.
Early afternoon: Meet with the special population directors to discuss how to close achievement gaps
It’s important to Sandra that each student gets equitable access to learning. With Brightspace, they’ve improved inclusion dramatically. Sandra is meeting with the special population directors to discuss how to make the program available to all students. She knows that this will also improve the ROI of their investment because everyone will benefit from it.
- Just as K is not the same as 12, your learning platform should not be a one-size-fits-all solution for all grades.
- Brightspace grows with its learners, working for each stage of learning from kindergarten onward. Nonreaders and early readers can navigate Brightspace using icons, while older students can dive deeper into a wider variety of Brightspace tools.
- Some students have mobile devices and want to be able to access their schoolwork easily on them. Other students don’t have mobile devices at all. Brightspace will work on any device, from the latest and greatest to hand-me-downs to the devices that are in the classroom and library—meaning that everyone can access the content.
- Brightspace is built with accessibility in mind for people with disabilities and is interoperable with assistive technologies.
- D2L aligns its processes with global accessibility standards such as Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.1 Level AA standards, and openly reports its compliance to standards in VPAT and WCAG checklists.. This commitment to universal design for learning makes it easy to create differentiated instruction to support mastery.
Late afternoon: Empower teachers to improve student success
Sandra hears frequently from teachers about how overwhelmed they are. She prepares a presentation with a few ideas to share during the next PD day to help them improve student success without taking on more work. They are just as passionate about student success as she is, and she wants to continuously promote adoption of tools that will help them be successful as well as facilitate collaboration so that they learn from each other’s successes.
- Once teachers realize how much time Brightspace will help them save in a day, they are quick to adopt it for their classes.
- One of her superstar teachers loves Brightspace Portfolio and has incorporated it into a scavenger hunt activity on a field trip. Sandra wants to promote this idea to the rest of the teachers to inspire them.
- Brightspace acts much like an administrative assistant, helping teachers complete more administrative tasks in less time. They can do more easily and quickly—such as adding content to courses, reusing navigational bars to make links to external sites easily accessible, releasing assignments to specific students, providing meaningful feedback, and communicating with both students and parents.
- Grades are released immediately, so students are notified as soon as they’re available, which cuts down the amount of student requests to teachers asking about their grades.
- Teachers always have access to on-demand, bite-sized best practices through Brightspace Training, or they can consult with peers for ideas in the Brightspace Community.
Bedtime: Enjoy peace of mind
Sandra sleeps well at night.
- Students and teachers can access Brightspace whenever they want to. With a system uptime of better than 99.9% uptime, Sandra knows that everyone will be able to access Brightspace anytime, making it easy for students to work around their part-time jobs and activities—without interrupting her downtime.
- Sandra knows that students’ data is secure and protected. Using a system with operational practices based on industry-leading security and privacy standards, she doesn’t have to worry that students’ data is at risk.
- D2L doesn’t just rely on Amazon Web Services. D2L has an impressive track record of security leadership. Data is encrypted both in transit and at rest. D2L holds ISO 27001 and ISO 27018 certifications and is a member of the Cloud Security Alliance.
- We understand that privacy is not just about keeping your data secure with our encryption while it’s in transit and at rest in our cloud. You own your data and you control it. D2L is a leader in building software with privacy by design as a core principle and supports compliance with the General Data Protection Regulation, the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act, and other privacy standards.