Preparing Adults for their GED®, HiSET®, or TASC™ Assessment

Posted on May 3, 2018

High School Equivalency Test Prep

It’s never too late for anyone to get their high school equivalency diploma.

As schools continue to battle drop-out rates , chronic absenteeism , and adhere to ESSA and state bylaws to increase graduation rates , administrators are encouraging students to stay in school – or come back.

Students leave school for a number of reasons, and their motivations for seeking an alternative high school diploma are just as numerous. Many adult students want a diploma for personal achievement and a better quality of life. Adults may be seeking better income, advancement in their career, job stability, an opportunity to go to college, joining the military, and more.

An estimated 34 million adults over the age of eighteen do not have a high school diploma which accounts for an estimated 30 % of adults living at or below the poverty level. According to the Bureau of Labor...

ACT® Prep Made Easy & Flexible

Posted on May 1, 2018

ACT Test Prep Made Easy

Getting our students ready for college and career is priority number one for many high school educators. We work hard every day, all year long, to give our students the skills and knowledge they need to best prepare them for the next step of their journey beyond high school.

For many of our students that next step is college.

But preparing our students for a college entrance examination can sometimes be challenging – especially since the last thing our students want to think about is taking another high-stakes test. And I’m sure you’re cringing with the mention of that word, too! However, with the implementation of ESSA, some high school students have a choice to take the ACT® and others may not.

What is the ACT?

The ACT assessment is one of the largest U.S. college entrance examinations administered to high school students. The ACT...

What Do ESSA Evidence Requirements Mean to Local Schools?

Posted on Apr 25, 2018

The Impact of Evidence of Effectiveness on Local Schools

This article is Part 2 of our ESSA: Evidence of Effectiveness series. Make sure to check out Part 1 : Understanding the Difference between Research-based and Evidence-based.

As we shift our focus from research-based to evidence-based, we raise the bar on the level of rigorous support schools need to adopt, support, and scale instructional programming across the classrooms and schools in their district or state. First came approval of state ESSA plans, and now the next phase of identifying and implementing Evidence of Effectiveness is underway.

But what does that mean? What roles do the State Education Agency (SEA) and the Local Education Agency (LEA) play in establishing and demonstrating evidence? What’s expected of each? And, more importantly, what is at stake in terms of accountability?

Like always...

STEM: Trending for a Promising Future!

Posted on Apr 24, 2018

Odysseyware Always Changing, Always Improving

Our Always Changing, Always Improving series provides insight to our ongoing commitment to Odysseyware educators and our learners, to demonstrate our dedication to providing innovative, up-to-date, and relevant curriculum and learning opportunities for students, and support tools for students, teachers, and schools alike. We are committed to keeping our curriculum and instructional technology ‘refreshed’ for today’s schools in a dynamic digital environment.

STEM (and STEAM) play a critical role in not just our schools, but our global society as a whole.

When we empower kids with the opportunities to be engaged in a well-rounded curriculum , and learn the interconnectedness of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics, we provide a well laid path to national advancement in keeping our nation a leader in a global marketplace.

...

What is the difference between Evidence and Research?

Posted on Apr 19, 2018

ESSA-Evidence of Effectiveness-Research-vs-Evidence

This article is Part 1 of our ESSA: Evidence of Effectiveness series. Part 2 (Understanding the different tiers of Evidence of Effectiveness) is coming soon.

I know what you could be thinking: tomato/tamato, right?

For so long we, as educators, have used the words evidence and research somewhat interchangeably. Sure, we know there’s a difference. But often when we reviewed curriculum in our classrooms, set-up pilots, and ultimately decided on an instructional purchase, we sought out ‘research-based’ options to guide our choices and decisions – and assumed strong research-based curriculum meant strong evidence of effectiveness.

But does it?

Do research-based programs still have a place in our classrooms? Do they still have merit? And, more importantly, do they still hold a stake in the...

Why We Desperately Need Social Emotional Learning to Support Our Students

Posted on Apr 10, 2018

Social Emotional Learning Supports Our Students

The struggle is real: Being a teenager (and pre-teen) is hard.

Think back to when you were a teenager. Do remember the battle of trying to figure out who you were (the self-discovery stage) and how you felt like no one around you could understand you (i.e., adults just don’t get it)? Then there’s the issue of the onset of acne, the invasion of the hormone body snatchers, and just being self-conscious about your body in general. Many of us were in the battle of trying to convince peers of how braces and glasses were cool . The overall awkwardness alone was enough to make you feel like you could die from embarrassing moments.

And these were just the personal struggles.

What about the struggles at school? The many different teachers, the challenges of learning new skills and concepts (especially when some subjects didn’t ‘...

Decrease Dropout Rates with Online Learning

Posted on Apr 6, 2018

Decrease Dropout Rates with Online Learning

Ensuring high school completion is not just a school or regional priority. It's a national priority.

Although the overall high school completion rates have increased over the past century, schools still face the challenge of how to prevent students from deciding to leave. The most challenging aspect when determining prevention strategies is the fact that there is not a singular precedent for determining what that ‘red flag,’ deciding factor is. This is largely due to many factors that determine why a student may elect to not complete school.

While the number of low-grad-rate high schools has declined considerably over the past decade, the number is still high in some states. With the new Federal Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) graduation requirements going into effect, many districts are faced with asking themselves the tough questions surrounding accountability for...