Monday, June 15, 2015

Counteracting the Summer Slide

Most readers will be familiar with the concept of summer slide in terms of regression of student skills during summer break. In fact, the U.S. Department of Education has a series of blog posts* regarding this topic as well as student resource suggestions from Edutopia**. But let’s turn this around and look at how we can apply this concept to teachers and administrators. Although we will be specifically looking at this in terms of gaining proficiency with Galileo K-12 Online, this could apply to other educational technology.

Ask yourself some questions before you get started: On which system(s) will you focus? How much time will you dedicate to this? What resources will you need? Do you have appropriate access or will you need specialized access to these systems? Are there continuing education credits available? 

Once you have set some goals, you can do a little research to help figure out what resources these systems offer and how to begin your work. In the case of Assessment Technology Incorporated (ATI) Galileo K-12 Online, here are some suggestions: 
  • Public web page: ATI offers materials that give a general overview and highlight specific features available in Galileo. There are also videos that offer user-friendly explanations of Galileo features. In addition, there are case studies that highlight how other districts/charters have implemented Galileo along with discussion of their successes and best practices. Lastly, there is a treasure trove of information to be mined from our research documents (e.g., technical documents, research documents, white papers, and FAQs).  
  • Support web page: Technical support documentation can sometimes overlap Professional Development (PD) information. ATI offers documentation of system requirements and general use/optimization of Galileo. You can also familiarize yourself with the various support options should you need them in the future. 
  • ATI Professional Development Forum: This will likely be your best resource as a user. In the Galileo Professional Development Forum, you can access: quick reference guides on specific features/reports, short videos on how to use Galileo, and previously recorded Learning on Demand sessions that go into more depth on a variety of topics (more on this later). 
  • ATI Field Services Coordinator or Professional Development team: Contact ATI’s friendly Field Services Coordinators or PD team so that they can share their wealth of knowledge and experience. Perhaps they can point you to information you seek.
  • Learning on Demand: The ATI Professional Development Department offers live online Learning on Demand sessions to assist educators in becoming proficient users of Galileo K-12 Online technology with the goal of enhancing student learning. The sessions occur throughout the year as often as 4 to 5 times per month.  The topics change throughout the year so be sure to check back regularly. Continuing professional development credit is offered for those who register and participate in the live session. The content is also recorded and available for later viewing in the Professional Development Forum
  • Seminars and conferences: In partnership with various school districts, ATI hosts a number of regional/statewide seminars covering various topics relevant to the educational community. We also participate in a number of conferences and often host discussions/presentations during the conferences. Check our Events page for the latest schedule. 

Hopefully, as you learn more about the systems your district/charter has opted to use, you will be more proficient and ultimately be better equipped to help your students and fulfill your goals. But don’t forget to enjoy your respite from the classroom because fall will be approaching all too soon! 

Baron Reyna
ATI Field Services Coordinator

* Jasper, C. (n.d.) Become an “Education Coach” and Keep the Summer Slide at Bay All Season [Blog post]. Retrieved from:

** Davis, M. (2013, June 4). Resources to Prevent Summer Slide: Virtual Field Trips, DIY Projects and Summer Reading [Blog post]. Retrieved from

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