Education is constantly transforming because of today’s diverse society. There is no specific way of communicating, learning, or working. The Education Transformation Framework (ETF) is a tool for education leaders to guide them through these constant transformations. The ETF, comprised of four pillars (Leadership and Policy, Teaching and Learning, Intelligent Environments, and Student and School Success), is a guide to strategize on how to deliver knowledge based on the students’ needs.
Schools should start with having a sharp vision for change that considers the aspirations and needs of all stakeholders. This vision needs to be a flexible, living document to easily adjust with constant changes in technology and a school’s needs. Included in these stakeholders are the students, who must be equipped to be life-long learners. Since the future is uncertain, it is important for educators to anticipate the future through research and integrating the data gathered into the daily learning of students. Learning, of course, should be constantly improving, and currently, most schools focus on improving teachers and teaching. Moving forward, this should not just be the focus of educators. Improving learning is not just changing the level at which students learn but also changing their learning behaviors in different environments (classroom, home, etc.).
A new system of student-centered learning should focus more on what and how students want to learn, instead of students just receiving knowledge created by adults. In this new system, students of all personalities, learning styles, interests, etc. can maximize their learning based on their own uniqueness.
Another essential part of teaching and learning is integrating assessments along with individual feedback. Assessments allow teachers to gauge how much students learned from a lesson while feedback allows students to have a deeper understanding of the lessons. Since all students are different, each one has their own way of receiving feedback, and therefore having the teacher give out personalized feedback is important. Microsoft tools such as Forms, Teams, Flipgrid, and more, are some that teachers use to provide assessments and personalized feedback to keep students engaged.
The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the need for hybrid learning, a learning environment that combines digital and face-to-face classes. This includes face-to-face classes brought about by the pandemic such as partial opening of classes, synchronous and separated model, and rotational model. Implementing hybrid learning helps to ensure the well-being and academic success of each student.
Since digital classes will be used more in the future, schools must ensure that all school data are private, and students, teachers, and school staff are safe and secure from cyber-crime. A more digitalized space for school also increases efficiency. With Microsoft tools such as Teams, Power BI, and more, daily school operations will run more efficiently with these tools compared to managing multiple technology solutions.
Achieving success as a school means students, teachers, and staff should all be performing. Having a good school leader is key to this success. Together with the teachers, they should produce strategies to improve teaching and learning with emphasis on teacher learning and development, curriculum planning, and establishing goals and expectations for teaching and learning.
Success, today, can be characterized by how much people learn. With the Fourth Industrial Revolution, the Knowledge Economy was ushered. To be successful in this new economy, students need to acquire a mindset of viewing failure not as the opposite of success but as a step toward success. Most people fail before they experience success.
Finally, success needs to be achieved by everyone, and each one needs to have an equal opportunity to be successful. In a class, there is no single best way to educate students because all of them are unique. Especially when factoring in students with disabilities, which according to UNICEF, “is the single most serious barrier to education across the globe.” Education needs to be accessible and inclusive. With Microsoft tools such as Immersive Reader, Learning Tools, Translator, etc., a class with students with disabilities, students whose first language is different from the learning instruction, education is inclusive and accessible, and all have equal opportunity to success.