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AACTE Partners with Digital Promise to Elevate Learner Variability Tools that Support Equitable Teaching

AACTE has teamed up with the leaders of Digital Promise’s Learner Variability Project to address systems-level transformation that directly addresses the challenges students face by using the Learner Variability Navigator (LVN); a free open-source tool to make learning sciences research accessible to educators.  Earlier this year, a representative group of AACTE members were introduced to the project and navigation tools, and using their feedback, AACTE is  pleased to bring you the webinar series that lifts up tools and practices with the Learner Variability Project most relevant to the educator preparation field.

Join AACTE for the first webinar in the series on September 26 at 2:00 p.m. EST, Translating Learning Sciences Research for the Classroom, conversation on translating learning sciences research into a web app that paints a picture of whole child learning.  Hear from panelists  Rachel Bersharat Mann, Sarah Oberle and Ty Johnson about their experiences as a faculty member, K-12 teacher, and education innovation leader, respectively. The three panelists will share how they translated learning sciences into practice and used the Learner Variability Navigator to support their practice in teacher education and the classroom.

The session will explore the role of research in teacher education and practice, and why understanding learner variability matters for supporting equitable learning. It will be moderated by Alison Shell and Jessica Jackson from the Learner Variability Project at Digital Promise, a global nonprofit organization dedicated to equity in education.


Rachel Besharat Mann
Visiting Assistant Professor of Education Studies at Wesleyan University

With an extensive background in the New York City public education system, and an academic focus in educational and developmental psychology, Rachel Besharat Mann joins Wesleyan University as a visiting assistant professor, bringing an interdisciplinary background to the College of Education Studies. She previously served as a professor of educational psychology and curriculum and teaching at Fordham University in New York. She currently serves as a research consultant for Digital Promise, a non-profit educational company seeking to improve education access and opportunity through research. Her focus at Digital Promise is on lifelong literacy development and what the learning sciences show about the impacts of various academic, cognitive, demographic, and social/emotional factors on outcomes.


Ty Johnson
Improvement Partner, Partners in School Innovation

Ty Johnson’s career in education began in Philadelphia, where he taught special education, science, reading, and math. Building on the success of raising elementary reading levels of children with autism to that of their peers, Johnson began working in leadership. He completed leadership training with PhillyPLUS, where he learned to balance adaptive and technical skill sets to drive teacher improvement and gains in student outcomes. His greatest achievements came while serving as an assistant principal of specialized services in a charter junior high school. In that role, Johnson led his department to create a vision statement and supporting systems to strengthen content and rigor; adjust least restrictive placements for students; and reduce special education referrals given a remodeled intervention process. He is also proud of having designed a virtual workshop for teachers, parents, and other community members on talking with young children about race and racism as well as planning for anti-racist learning environments.

Sarah Oberle
First Grade Teacher, Red Clay Consolidated School District

Sarah Oberle has served the Red Clay Consolidated School District for 14 years as a first grade teacher. She is also team leader, representing her colleagues on her building leadership team. Sarah has a passion for understanding the learning sciences to improve instructional content and practice. She believes that connecting educational research to the classroom is essential towards maximizing all learners’ experiences. Oberle earned a B.A. in Psychology, M.Ed. in Elementary Education and is currently working on an Ed.D. in Educational Leadership and Cognitive Sciences at the University of Delaware. She lives in Newark, Delaware with her husband and two daughters.

Register now
Translating Learning Sciences Research for the Classroom
September 26, 2:00 p.m. EST

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