Competency-Based Education

Mooresville District Adopts Competency Based Assessment Platform

The Mooresville Graded School District will use a cloud-based platform to evaluate the academic progress of all of its 6,100 students in seven schools.

The district has selected MasteryConnect's platform to help teachers identify a student's level of understanding of core academic concepts, allowing them to then personalize instruction for each student and each classroom. MasteryConnect representatives said that its platform can improve instruction by giving immediate feedback, assessments, results and data that can lead to quick revision of teaching strategies.

MGSD Superintendent Mark Edwards said he was particularly happy because MasteryConnect's assessments can be accessed by any student's electronic device. Eight years ago, the district began the process of providing every student with devices. At this point, kindergarteners and first-graders have iPads for their use at school. Second- and third-graders have laptops for use at school and all students in the fourth grade and above have MacBooks that they can both use at school and at home.

In the classroom, teachers can use MasteryConnect to measure each student's mastery of concepts, but also identify trends and outliers on a classroom scale. District administrators can use it to gauge academic performance across all grade levels.

"Teachers can issue assessments and know quickly which students are grasping teaching concepts and which need remediation," Edwards said. "The platform takes it one step further by giving students a glimpse into how they are scoring and what they need to work on."

MGSD is one of 73 district members of the League of Innovative Schools, a network of district leaders who are leveraging technology to improve student outcomes.

"Incorporating competency-based tools into teaching is precisely the type of action we want our schools to take," said League Director Sara Shapiro.

About the Author

Michael Hart is a Los Angeles-based freelance writer and the former executive editor of THE Journal.