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Achievement Gap Task Force Forum - March 9, 2017


Accelerating Opportunities Through Innovation

Click here to see what you missed at the March 9 Forum. 

The Innovator's Mindset, the popular book on empowering students, comes to life at the next San Diego County Achievement Gap Task Force Forum on March 9. 

Author George Couros leads the event with a powerful, 60-minute keynote, followed by two opportunities to attend breakout sessions that touch on the characteristics of the innovator’s mindset. Couros is a leading educator in the area of innovative leadership, teaching and learning. His book, The Innovator’s Mindset, empowers educators to rethink education and inspire students to follow their passions and be inspired by their students. 

This AGTF Forum is designed for superintendents, district and school leaders, teachers, and counselors to ensure your students thrive. Student engagement, school climate, and equity play a big role in your LCAP, the LCFF Evaluation Rubrics, and the California School Dashboard, so bring your team and take action.



Breakout Sessions: 

For session materials, please to go out event page

Ensuring Excellence and Equity for All Students in STEM Education

If we believe all students are entitled to a high-quality and engaging STEM education, then educational leaders must be intentional in their efforts to create inspiring and student-centered schools for all students. Don’t leave innovative learning opportunities to chance through "early adopters" or "pioneering teachers." Learn about the innovative and systemic approaches being used to provide high-quality, districtwide STEM education for all students in Fallbrook Union Elementary School District and how a framework for improvement can help ensure excellence in your district or school. 

Innovator's Mindset Characteristics: Reflective

Presenters: Candace Singh, superintendent, and Eric Forseth, associate superintendent, Fallbrook Union Elementary School District


Grassroots and Google Ninjas

Classroom innovation does not come easily. But it’s 2017 and innovation is necessary. The GUHSDtech Ninja program was established to support the evolving needs of teachers. It helps teachers build their knowledge and confidence on integrating technology into the classroom and it gives our students the opportunity to demonstrate their learning through innovative learning experiences. Learn more about the impact on teachers and students and gain ways to implement ninja program pieces in your district or school. 

Innovator's Mindset Characteristics: Problem finders, risk takers, networked, creators, reflective

Presenters: Dan McDowell, director of instructional technology, Theresa Kemper, assistant superintendent, and Franz Ruiz, teacher, Grossmont Union High School District


iMPACT: Developing Student Voice Through TEDxkids@ElCajon

Through an interactive breakout EDU Activity, Cajon Valley Union School District will share how to develop presentational literacy skills through the TED Ed curriculum and platform.  Each year, Cajon Valley organizes a TEDxkids@ElCajon event that showcases the passion and potential of their students through this unique platform. The presenters will share their journey to Presentation Literacy district-wide through the TED platform. 

Presenter: David Miyashiro, superintendent, Liz Loether, teacher, and Tamara Otero, board member, Cajon Valley Union School District; Kathy Gligo, Jenn Petraglia, and Bethany Schwappach, TED Coaches



Innovating within the Box: Using Student Voices to Address Equity Issues

Explore the role of cultural competence in a school setting in this interactive session. Learn how student focus groups and interviews can create opportunities for schoolwide dialogue around issues of equity. Gain access to a number of different resources to continue the conversation at your sites. 

Innovator's Mindset Characteristics: Reflective

Presenter: Ricardo Cooke, assistant principal, Sweetwater Union High school District


Leading Improvement Using Improvement Science to Create Meaningful Change

The heart of improvement is creating systems in districts and schools that ensure equitable outcomes for all students. How do we structure our improvement efforts to get there? Improvement science offers an approach and a set of tools to help leaders organize efforts to produce meaningful change. Learn more about improvement science and the six principles of that help educators learn fast to implement well.

Innovator's Mindset Characteristic: Problem finders

Presenter: Juli Coleman, director of school improvement, SDCOE


Redesigning American High Schools

What would you do with $10 million and a mandate to create a school of the future? Vista High School spent a year tackling that question and is now one of 10 schools in the nation to receive a $10 million XQ Superschool grant. Look into the future and learn about innovative approaches you can use as the Vista team shares its efforts to implement personal learning and connect students with real-world challenges tied to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. There will be time to reflect on the current context and plan for upcoming changes. 

Innovator's Mindset Characteristics: Problem finders, risk takers, creators, resilient, reflective

Presenters: Devin Vodicka, superintendent, Anthony Barela, principal, and Matt Doyle, assistant superintendent of innovation, Vista Unified School District


Stories of English Learner Improvement at the Elementary Level

Learn how Del Mar, Encinitas, and Lemon Grove school districts engaged in a systematic process for evaluating and improving an aspect of their English learner programs by understanding the problem, establishing an aim, identifying and testing changes, and developing measures to know whether those changes improved student outcomes.

Innovator's Mindset Characteristics: Empathetic, problem finders-solvers, reflective

Presenters: Keith Malcolm, special education director, Elizabeth Rozich, ELD instructional coach, and Michelle Silverio, teacher, Lemon Grove School District; Kristin Stanton, teacher on special assignment, Del Mar Union School District; Isabel Silva, coordinator, Maria Waskin, pupil personnel services director, and Julie Stansell, teacher on special assignment, Ronnie Kraft, program specialist, Encinitas Union School District


Stories of English Learner Improvement at the Secondary Level

Learn how Fallbrook and Sweetwater high school districts engaged in a systematic process for evaluating and improving an aspect of their English learner programs by understanding the problem, establishing an aim, identifying and testing changes, and developing measures to know whether those changes improved student outcomes.

Innovator's Mindset Characteristics: Empathetic, problem finders-solvers, reflective

Presenters: Aaron Magnan, assistant principal, and Dan Winters, director of research, Sweetwater Union High School District; Emily Toone, coordinator, and Megan Wiblemo, coordinator, Fallbrook Union High School District


Up Close with George Couros

Engage in conversation with author and educator George Couros in a small group setting. Reflect on his keynote speech and build your understanding of the eight characteristics of an innovative mindset. There will be time for questions and answers.

Presenter: George Couros, author, The Innovator’s Mindset