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Maximizing Professional Development with Flexibility and Choice in the Carlsbad Unified School District

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Carlsbad Unified School District (CUSD) is a high-achieving district serving 11,000 students across 14 schools in Carlsbad, California, a number of which have been designated Distinguished Schools at the federal and state level. The district is always working towards building a solid technology foundation for its students, starting a 1:1 Chromebook rollout for sixth graders and eventually expanding the program to every middle schooler in the district. To help with the initiative, CUSD and Alludo created a number of games to better assist teachers in maximizing the new technology, as well as support for a number of other key edtech additions.

CUSD’s commitment to professional development plays a big part in their mission to "provide every student an extraordinary education in an inspiring environment." Working with Alludo, CUSD edtech coach Robert Allen and his team designed a number of games aimed at providing teachers with the content and skills needed to amplify their use of technology in the classroom. Flexibility and choice were both key goals in game creation, with a focus on self-paced, gamified resources that teachers could do on their own time and at their own speed. Modules include those focused on G Suite, project-based learning, Chromebooks, and more, and the district is also using the platform for standalone, event-based, and blended learning PD.

Key Challenges

  • Educate teachers in the skills needed to make the best of the district’s new Chromebook roll-out

  • Meet the growing technology needs of the district’s high performing schools

  • Maximize professional development while providing teachers with the flexibility they need to support individual learning styles

Solution

Carlsbad Unified School District worked with Alludo to design and implement games optimized for the district’s specific technology initiatives. To support the program, CUSD stationed a tech coach at each school to act as a level designer and achievement reviewer, and to guide and collaborate with teachers. In addition, administrators supported the game's implementation by restructuring staff meetings to offer teachers more time to use Alludo.

Results

  • CUSD was able to create a variety of customized games to help teachers excel with new technologies in the classroom

  • Individualized games allowed the district to increase PD engagement among staff for more meaningful training

Looking Forward

The success of their Alludo games has enabled CUSD to create a better, more effective digital environment for both teachers and students. With nationally recognized Distinguished Schools and a growing commitment to technology integration, CUSD is leading the way for other districts to discover how gamified, personalized PD can support advanced edtech usage, with a flexible platform that can grow and change as new pieces of technology are added to the roster.

“What I like about these modules is you can watch a brief instructional video on a subject of interest to you and walk away with a skill you can immediately put to work for yourself or in your classroom.” – CUSD Tech Coach