John Wright, Associate Superintendent, Innovation Office, OCPSGAMES IN K-6, 7-12
How do you cause positive disruptions within a large school district that serves over 200,000 students and has been around for over 150 years? You create an Office of Innovation where our goals include incubating best practice on a small scale and then to replicate quickly across other school sites when practices show promising outcomes.
Though Orange County Public Schools enjoys a positive rating as a high-performing, large, urban school district, public schools must change! Dr. Aoun in his book Robot-Proof: Higher Education in the Age of Artificial Intelligence brings forth many ideas that are equally applicable to K- 12 educational institutions. He speaks of “new literacies” such as technological, data and human literacies and crucial cognitive capacities such as critical thinking, systems thinking, entrepreneurship and cultural agility. The use of project-based learning, maker spaces, real-world projects, service learning and modeling and simulation all help students become more literate and prepared for today’s world.
The Innovation Office oversees and supports a portfolio of 27 schools within Orange County Public Schools. Each of these schools has a unique innovation plan to meet the needs of that particular school community. In this session, you will learn more about the work of the Innovation Office within the nation’s 8th largest school district with an emphasis on the use of gaming, simulations and technology to support student learning within the various innovation plans.
Also, hear more about a new school that the district will be opening in 2023 that will be anchored and connected to Central Florida’s robust Modeling and Simulation industry where the students will be able to design unique pathways to advance their personalized educational journeys.