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SXSWedu 2015

Why Future High School Classrooms Could Be Ageless

In this panel, Jeff Livingston and guests will discuss the case for a new model of secondary education: competency-based learning. This model asks us to reevaluate and ultimately reject the concept of purely age-based classrooms, an outdated aspect of our education system that is too often taken for granted. Jeff believes that grouping students by their competency in a subject rather than their age must – and will – become the new standard in how we determine student success and growth.

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  1. Discuss why the current model needs to be completely dismantled and restructured
  2. Explain why the competency-based learning model better serves students in preparing them for college and today’s job market
  3. Show how education technology, such as adaptive learning platforms, can help enable the classroom transformation to a competency-based model


  • Jeff Livingston, Senior Vice President of Education Policy, McGraw-Hill Education
  • Ruth Rathblott, Chief Executive Officer, Harlem Educational Activities Fund
  • Rashid Davis, Founding Principal, Pathways in Technology Early College High School
  • Ann Adler, Executive Director, Young Women’s Leadership Network


Brian Belardi, Director of Media Relations, McGraw-Hill Education

Meta Information:

  • Event: EDU
  • Format: Panel Discussion
  • Track: Achievement Gaps & Educational Equality
  • Level: Field Experience
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