Introduced Version House Bill 4627 History

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WEST virginia Legislature

2016 regular session


House Bill 4627

By Delegates Kessinger, Arvon, Hill, Foster, Stansbury, Blair, Fluharty, McCuskey, Summers, Hamrick and R. Smith

[Introduced February 20, 2016; Referred
to the Committee on Education.

A BILL to amend the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, by adding thereto a new section, designated §18-1-5, relating to creating a digital learning pilot project; establishing  a purpose; establishing goals; establishing objectives; establishing key components of the pilot project; establishing qualifications; and establishing a deadline.

Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:

That the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, be amended by adding thereto a new section, designated §18-1-5, to read as follows:


§18-1-5. Digital literacy pilot project.

(a) Purpose. -- In the ever-changing digital world, students must be equipped with a variety of new skills necessary for success in higher learning and the workforce. To become competitive on national and global scales, West Virginia classrooms must focus efforts on teaching digital literacy to ensure students are prepared to participate in the modern economy. Though today’s students are digital natives, many of them do not have the digital literacy skills they need to succeed in school, college, and the workplace. Millennials use technology constantly but they have not developed the digital literacy skills that will help them in a future career. Further, problem-solving skills must be developed in concert with technology in order for students to be prepared to participate in the modern economy. For West Virginia students to compete in a twenty-first century world, they must have modern skills on par with their peers elsewhere.

(b) Goal. – The pilot project’s goal is to provide equality and access to high quality digital learning solutions for all educational stakeholders throughout the State of West Virginia. Ideally, the digital literacy pilot will include school districts of varying size, geographic: location and student demographics. The focus is to demonstrate a digital learning model throughout a diverse geographic area and result in measurable performance improvements for students no matter their socio-economic status or where they reside. The pilot will provide West Virginia-specific information to inform policymakers about digital literacy and its role in shaping West Virginia-specific standards.

(c) Objectives:--

(1) Support state initiatives to increase the effectiveness in the use of technology and digital resources within the classroom. The focus is to be placed on assisting educators to better integrate technology and digital resources in the classroom, while also increasing the digital literacy skills of each student, enabling them to succeed in school, including the next-generation online assessments. These same skills are critical in preparing students to achieve the college and career aspirations.

(2) Provide educators with access to high quality digital learning content and the curriculum development tools necessary to effectively assemble and distribute this content to their students.

(3) Empower educators to easily personalize the learning experience for students; entire class groups of students or individual student.

(4) Provide a path to financial independence related to the purchase of hardcopy curriculum and instructional materials. As districts begin to assemble lessons, units and tools; from free Open Education Resources (OER), they can supplement and eventually overcome their reliance on costly and outdated text books.

(5) Provide a method for districts to share content and best practices related to the use of technology and digital resources with their peers.

(6) Provide administrators with the tools and resources they need to easily measure the effectiveness of the technology and digital resources within their district, schools and classrooms so that they can easily communicate the results to all stakeholders within their community and adjust their strategy as needed.

(7) Provide a digital learning solution that empowers flexibility for schools to implement the most appropriate and effective blended learning model(s) for their students.

(8) Support the development and distribution of best-practices related to digital learning, while maintaining the autonomy and local control that is highly valued by school districts throughout the State of West Virginia.

(d) Key components of pilot. --

(1) Ability to easily measure the digital literacy skills within each district, school and classroom so that an initial baseline is established that can be periodically measured against throughout the term of the pilot. This will provide measurable performance data to all stakeholders to whether the pilot is delivering on the promise of improving digital literacy. The pilot will utilize a well-recognized and respected standard for the measurement of digital literacy for both teachers and students. A skills diagnostic will be utilized that enables the measurement of current digital literacy skills of teachers and students and provides detailed reports that can be used by administrators to improve professional development for teachers, and by teachers to inform instructional strategies for their students. For teachers, the diagnostic will measure their ability to facilitate and inspire student learning and creativity, design and develop digital age learning experiences, model digital age work and learning, promote and model digital citizenship and responsibility and, engage in professional growth and leadership. For students, the diagnostic will measure skills in the areas of creativity and innovation, communication and collaboration, research and informal fluency, critical thinking and problem solving, digital citizenship, and technology concepts and operations. The skills diagnostic should generate detailed reports at the district, school and individual (student and teacher) level such that districts are empowered to develop instructional strategies for students, and professional development for teachers that will enhance the development of digital literacy skills.

(2) To enhance digital literacy skills of students; K-12 digital content this should support multiple implemental strategies, including teacher facilitated and independent study approaches. Content should also facilitate Project-Based Learning (PBL) so that educators can integrate the instruction of digital literacy into core subjects such as Math, English, Science and Social Studies. Content should contain detailed teacher support materials that include information on standards alignment, as well as supplemental resources to enhance or extend the learning experience for their students.

(3) To enhance modern skills of teachers; digital content, on-demand resource and reference materials should be available 24/7. On-demand resources should include prerecorded webinars, how-to-videos and guides, and implementation and customer support services that support teacher effectiveness of the use of technology and digital resources within their classroom.

(4) To supplement support services, high quality professional development specific to the instructional objectives of each district should be provided. Professional development should be available in various modalities including face-to-face, web-based, and prerecorded on-demand videos to ensure the greatest possible coverage and convenience for educators. Professional development should include not only training on platform and digital literacy solutions, but also integration of the solutions within the teaching and learning environment with the goal of improving student achievement.

(5) Professional development should also be included for administrators and curriculum directors covering topics such as the best-practices of creation, management, distribution and maintenance of digital content within school systems.

(6) A Learning Object Repository (LOR) that is prepopulated with high-quality, state aligned OER content that enables educators to easily search across a wide range of criteria; standard, topic, grade, type, etc. To qualify as “high-quality”, each OER item will have been evaluated against a quality rubric. Each OER item should be further reviewed by subject matter expert in each core subject area to ensure practical application by a teacher of each piece of OER content prior to being included within the LOR.

(7) The LOR should be accompanied by curriculum development tools that enable educators to easily search and assemble digital content into lessons, units and courses. These tools should support district level approval of content such that consistency is maintained across the schools within the district and ensure local and state control of content while also supporting the personalization of content by teachers for their students. The curriculum development tools should enable districts to create their own digital content to further enhance the quality and quantity of the LOR. Finally, districts should be able to incorporate content previously licensed from other third-party publishers as deemed appropriate.

(8) The result of the pilot should provide clear evidence of increasing the digital literacy skills of participating students. To that end, a product of the pilot should be data provided in clear, concise and easy to read reports. These reports should be on-demand and available through an online user interface reports should be available for district, campus, classroom and student levels.

(e) Qualifications. -- The success of this pilot may require a partnership with a third-party that is experienced in the educational disciplines described above and has demonstrable experience serving school districts at national level. The following experience should serve as minimum qualifications:

(1) Demonstrable of school district partnerships with experience providing educational solutions specific to the areas described. Specifically, evidence of improving individual student digital literacy skills through the use of a pre and post diagnostic that measures increases in proficiency following the use of a digital literacy program of study.

(2) Minimum of ten years’ experience working with schools districts to provide educational solutions such as; digital literacy assessment and digital literacy content.

(3) Validation of digital literacy content and curriculum that is entirely online, highly engaging, and grade-appropriate and be capable of being utilized on multiple operating systems and hardware platforms including desktops, laptops, and tablets. Digital literacy content should include teacher support and supplemental materials that supports teacher intervention, facilitation and extension.

(4) Demonstrate experience and success providing support resources and professional development for a digital literacy and online learning application adoption.

(5) Demonstrate experience with a pilot of this size and magnitude.

(f) The state board shall develop and implement a digital literacy pilot project no later than the beginning of the 2016-2017 school year.

(g) The state board shall use results from the pilot project to improve and inform digital literacy standards statewide.


NOTE: The purpose of this bill is to create a digital learning pilot project. The bill establishes a purpose. The bill establishes goals. The bill establishes objectives. The bill establishes key components of the pilot project. The bill establishes qualifications. The bill establishes a deadline.

Strike-throughs indicate language that would be stricken from a heading or the present law, and underscoring indicates new language that would be added.

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