NCSSM has a commitment to create shared, open content for public use. In its early days, NCSSM broadcasted lessons via public access television. The Internet has exponentially expanded the school's capacity for content production and dissemination.
NCSSM is struggling with dissemination of information. They would like to have a place to put content, an "Amazon of learning products," but no such platform exists.
Also, making teachers aware of copyright issues and making sure content is suitable for sharing has been another challenge.
Make sure your school librarian, media specialist, or person who understands access, curation, and copyright is looped in from the beginning. In many ways, they are the most important person in the blended learning process. They are well-versed in teaching and pedagogy, they work with every discipline, and they are often adept with computers. Have them help you to develop standards and guidelines.
Invest in professional development for teachers. Teachers should feel comfortable finding and using content that works for their lessons. They should not need to reinvent the wheel.
Check out NCSSM's learning innovations blog, where teachers and administrators offer resources and ideas for teaching in a blended learning format. It can be found at www.ncssm.edu/learning-innovations.
For educators, check out services NCSSM provides at www.ncssm.edu/for-educators.
The mission of North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics is to: educate academically talented students to become state, national, and global leaders in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics; advance public education in North Carolina; and inspire innovation for the betterment of humankind, through challenging residential, online, summer, and virtual learning driven by instructional excellence and the excitement of discovery.
NCSSM runs three programs--a residential program which uses blended learning, an online program for distance learners with occasional campus visits, and a distance program run in collaboration with other school districts, which teaches online students in their home districts in courses not otherwise offered in their schools.
Contact: Melissa Thibault
Contact Title: Vice Chancellor for Distance Education and Extended Programs
North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics
1219 Broad Street
Durham, North Carolina