RCAS Strategic Plan Pt. 2

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Society today is so quickly changing and evolving, and technology plays a big role in that. That’s why Part 2 of the Rapid City Area School District’s 5-year, 5-part strategic plan is 21st century learning.

There is so much possible just on a smart phone, but it’s nothing new for students. Most students were born into a smart phone world, and the schools’ goal is to teach students the way they live.

"21st century learning, there is a lot of discussion of what that really means,” said Shane Daniel, director of information and technology for the district. “When people think that, they automatically go to, ‘Oh, it’s about computers.’ It's really about looking at the problem and figuring out how to fix it, and if it’s with a computer or with a piece of paper, or working with a team."

Adapting to new and ever-changing technology is key — not only for student success in the classroom, but also in everyday life. RCAS wants to bring a realistic learning experience into the classroom, giving students the knowledge and tools needed to succeed.

 “It’s those things such as problem-solving,” said Dr. Lori Simon, RCAS superintendent. “Critical thinking and analysis, working as a team, really being able to communicate well in a number of ways."

Technology is all around us in the 21st century, and it gives a global perspective through the internet and social media. The goal of the district's 21st century learning strategy is to teach students to evolve with a fast-paced society, using technology as a tool.

Many of these students were born into a world of innovation and connection, but their educators were not.

"That kind of where we have to do a paradigm shift,” Simon said. “And understand that kids today do learn differently, and there for technology has a critical role in the classroom"

RCAS does understand the important of face-to-face interaction, and not relying solely on technology-based learning.

"We want there to be a balance,” Simon said. “It shouldn't be about constant use of technology, really it's about thinking more carefully about what is the role of technology and when and how should it be used during the school day.

View all parts of the district's plan here.

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