Innovating Now

The district is reinvesting some of the savings it has realized through costtech Image reductions and doing business differently into supporting teachers with the necessary resources and skills to create learning environments for today’s --and tomorrow’s-- learners.

In 2014, Mason City Schools Innovative Learning Officer Jonathan Cooper gave an update to the Board of Education that outlines a three year plan for more personalized learning.

“We’re now closer than ever to providing the real world to our students. I think of the outside world as history happening. You can no longer look to the outside world as the only model of how the ‘real world works’ because by the time many of our kids arrive in the ‘real world’ it will be a very different world than it is today,” explained Cooper. “We serve a very plugged in and engaged population. School needs to have the same natural integration of technology that our kids experience at home.”

Like many school districts, Mason used to address technology and curriculum instruction separately – with tech specials and isolated technology instruction. Today, however, the district is moving to embed technology so that the tech tool a teacher selects is simply a choice to enhance, enrich, and extend the learning experience.

“From here, we’re moving more into technology integration – this is messy, where we have many more devices and pioneers who are trying and piloting new ways of teaching. But our goal is to find the right platform, device and experience with the technology embedded in to allow us to meet students where they are for personalized learning,” said Cooper.

Community Partnerships
Supporters like the Mason Schools Foundation and the Mason Early Childhood Center PTO, Western Row PTO and Mason Intermediate PTO have been instrumental partners as the district reinvests energy, time, and resources into creating learning experiences that support staff and students.

“It has been so exciting coming to a community that is ready to grow and create an innovative learning culture for our students. There is a strong foundation to build upon toward personalized learning in the 21st century. We are about to enter into one of the most exciting times in the history of Mason City Schools,” said Cooper.
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