The Phoenix Union High School District (Phoenix, AZ) mission is “Preparing every student for success in college, career, and life.” To ensure focus on this mission, teachers and staff are trained and supported to meet student needs and celebrate accomplishments as they work to prepare and inspire their students. There are challenges including the impact of the pandemic on student learning and teacher practice. Boxlight-EOS Education, the professional development division of Boxlight, has established a strong relationship with PXU (in its ninth year) so when remote learning became necessary, EOS designed training and support to help teachers and staff.
Renu Singh, Program Director at Maryvale Gifted and Talented Academy, commented, “The greatest challenge last year was to actively engage all students for 90 minutes of class time in learning. Especially the freshmen whom the teachers had not met before. They were just names in the virtual classroom thus, there was negligible human connection. It was important to keep students engaged in a meaningful way.”
How did Boxlight-EOS Education redesign its professional program to better meet Phoenix Union High School District (PXU) needs?
The overall EOS approach to their work with PXU in the last year and a half has been:
- Stay focused on immediate needs and avoid overloading teachers and schools.
- Be relevant, meaningful, and adaptable regardless of the learning environment.
- Create a balance between district and teacher priorities and needs.
- Help drive positive change including differentiated and personalized instruction.
A key component of helping teachers navigate virtual classrooms was showing how Microsoft 365 for Education tools and features could improve teaching and learning engagement more efficiently.
“Microsoft Teams has really changed the work of teaching and learning. Teachers are able to provide materials to students who are not able to make it to campus. Teams also provided the most impactful way to connect with students outside of class time to provide support,” stated Matthew Georgia, Principal of Cesar Chavez High School.
As Boxlight-EOS Education continues to work with PXU on their professional development needs, we are confident that more positive outcomes will be shared.
For more on this professional development experience, read the case study here.