San Juan Unified School District in San Juan, California, is a proud GenYES district. Many of their schools were funded by EETT (Enhancing Education Through Technology) funding from the federal No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Act, Title II, Part D. In California, the EETT is focused on grades 4-8. Their website has a wonderful video explaining how GenYES students support the goals of the EETT and the whole district in regards to technology.
“The core of GenYes is the establishment of collaborative partnerships between students and teachers, with the express purpose of facilitating the integration of modern digital technologies in the practices of teaching. GenYes is well suited to meeting the needs of middle school students because it provides them with the opportunity to engage in their own learning. Expectations in the GenYes classroom are high and students and teachers come to see each other as capable partners. GenYes students also learn sets of skills relevant to project planning and implementation, as well as communication, that form the core of complex thinking skills which are critical in both today’s learning and workforce environment.
The GenYes experience involves a wide range of technical, academic, cognitive and social skills. Students are expected to become proficient and critical consumers and producers of education technology as well as use these skills to help teachers improve their personal and classroom use of educational technology. This requires a strong understanding of technology tools and then the ability to communicate and collaborate effectively with someone who may have a different point of view. When building collaborative projects, students must understand the needs of the partner-teacher, frame problems productively, seek out appropriate tools and information, then plan and manage their time and work in order to accomplish a discrete project within a specified timeline. Additionally, GenYes students, through working with their partner-teachers, develop an appreciation of sound pedagogical practice, including: the identification of learning objectives; the consideration of assessment strategies, and the alignment of projects with state academic content standards.”
The page explains how GenYES is part of their well-rounded approach to technology integration. Besides GenYES, San Juan provides a wide range of teacher professional development, from on-site coaching to ongoing workshops and summer institutes, plus hardware and software.
We are really proud of the teachers and students who make GenYES happen in San Juan schools, and the administrators who support and encourage technology use with such a holistic approach!