Spring Branch ISD Partners with BloomBoard to Launch Competency-based PD Programs

By January 25, 2017News

Spring Branch Independent School District Partners with BloomBoard to Launch Competency-based Professional Learning Programs Supported by Micro-credentials

New T-TESS Learning Program aims to ensure successful implementation of newly adopted teacher appraisal system

BloomBoard, the leading educator-focused professional development platform, and Spring Branch Independent School District (ISD) have partnered to launch multiple new competency-based professional learning programs to over 2,400 educators across the district. The new programs are designed to provide a path for educators to demonstrate measurable competency in the skills they’ve acquired and earn recognition for their professional growth through micro-credentials.

“We are excited to move all our staff towards a competency-based professional growth plan,” said Jennifer Blaine, Associate Superintendent at Spring Branch ISD. “BloomBoard gives us the flexibility to give support around important district initiatives such as T-TESS, while still enabling us to provide our educators choice and personalized professional development opportunities to support their individual growth goals.”

Six learning programs have been designed for the 2016-2017 school year, focusing on:

  • Texas Teacher Evaluation and Support System (T-TESS)
  • New Teacher Induction
  • Leadership Training
  • Blended Learning
  • Instructional Practices
  • Subject-specific Content Areas (i.e. Math, Science, Humanities, Visual & Performing Arts, etc.)

Each program provides educators access to curated collections of online learning resources as well as collaboration tools that allow them to connect with one another. The T-TESS Program, which aims to ensure successful implementation of the district’s newly adopted teacher appraisal system, provides Spring Branch ISD educators with on-demand access to collections of curated online learning resources aligned to each of the 13 T-TESS dimensions. As educators build capacity and develop their skills, they will have the opportunity to demonstrate competency and earn micro-credentials.

Through its partnership with Digital Promise, BloomBoard offers a library of micro-credentials that focus on a variety of skills such as effective reasoning, creative problem solving, and active listening. After applying their learning to their practice, educators can submit evidence of their competence through the BloomBoard platform for the opportunity to earn a micro-credential. These micro-credentials can be translated into Continuing Professional Education (CPE) units, which can be used towards renewal of an educator’s teaching certificate.

“Micro-credentials are a great way to support talent development and empower personalized learning for educators,” said BloomBoard’s CEO and co-founder, Jason Lange. “Through their custom professional learning programs, Spring Branch ISD has an incredible opportunity to not only support professional growth, but gain deeper insight into the efficacy of their PD efforts and better understand how teachers change their practice with students.”

Spring Branch was also selected to participate in an exclusive national online pilot for Teach Like A Champion presented through BloomBoard. The partnership between BloomBoard and Uncommon Schools’ Teach Like a Champion team will give SBISD access to collections of online learning and collaboration experiences related to specific Teach Like a Champion techniques. Fifty-nine new teachers and their mentors are participating in this professional learning through BloomBoard.