Education Elements, an organization that helps school districts personalize learning, embodies the saying “Tell me and I’ll forget. Show me, and I may not remember. Involve me, and I’ll understand” in their approach to education. Because of their belief that learning can be customized for every student, powerful results are being seen across the nation in student outcomes.
Their story demonstrates how passion + productivity for the work that they do and for improving K-12 education leads to students who are better prepared by their education for college and career so that they can give back to their communities as they get older.
Here is their story:
When Education Elements was founded in 2010, “blended learning” was just an idea with little traction and no real proof points. Anthony Kim, a longtime education technologist, wanted to help schools rethink the structure of schooling and the way technology could strengthen instruction and streamline operations. Anthony founded Education Elements on the belief that learning could be personalized for every student.
Our work started with a single charter school in Los Angeles and grew from there. KIPP Empower, our first school, had a specific problem to solve – creating a high-quality education with excellent academic outcomes in the face of limited per pupil allocations. The station rotation model developed at KIPP Empower is one we have seen replicated again and again across the country because it works, KIPP Empower is now one of the highest performing schools in the state of California.
We hire people who are amazing at what they do and want to use their talents to make a difference. We are all driven to have a positive impact on student outcomes and look for new team members who feel the same. We look for people who get excited about the opportunity to work with districts and schools. We want to get people fired up and demanding that every student have a fundamentally different educational experience that focuses on their individual needs. Our teams volunteer in after school programs and on weekends. They give back constantly.
With this, we all take on a whatever-it-takes approach to supporting the districts with whom we work. Our team works tirelessly to make sure that districts and schools have what they needs to help students succeed. The passion of our team leads to great results in public schools. Those results are measured in several ways: accelerated growth in reading and math; deeper learning in reading and math; higher student engagement; and higher teacher satisfaction.
We now serve over 100 schools across the country including large school districts such as Houston ISD, Newark Public Schools, District of Columbia Public Schools and Horry County Schools (the 2nd largest district in the state of South Carolina) and small districts like Piedmont, AL.
As the list of schools, districts, and networks we have worked with has grown, so has the set of challenges and the diversity of solutions. Our design-thinking process, which starts with an articulation of goals and assessment of school and district readiness, enables us to facilitate models that meet the needs of every school, just as the personalized environments we develop meet the needs of every student. We work with a range of proven blended models, ranging from a lab rotation model with Rocketship, to flex models at Career Path, to station rotation at the District of Columbia Public Schools. We often see iterations of all of these models within a single building in order to best meet student needs. Our 100 schools therefore represent 100 cases of developing a right-sized model, and thoughtfully and holistically supporting its implementation.
Fundamentally, we believe students should love learning and that we can bring that joy back through our individualize approach. This empowers us to demonstrate passion + productivity = give back in our work so that students have the chance to do the same.
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