Located in El Paso, Ysleta Independent School District serves more than 41,000 students. In 2015, members of the district leadership team recognized significant gaps in reading levels from the elementary to secondary levels. The gap was particularly wide among English Language Learners, who were simultaneously learning both English and Spanish languages. Campus leaders were also concerned about student engagement and students’ ability to articulate the purpose of their learning.
“The students are confident. They can communicate what they are doing, why they are doing it, and how they are making progress.”
— Norma Osuna, Principal at Ysleta Elementary School, Ysleta ISD
The district’s pilot was designed to facilitate a shift from whole-group, traditional instruction to student-centered, personalized learning to improve academic outcomes, increase ownership, and build lifelong learners. With CA Group’s support, the district launched their student centered blended learning pilots with a focus on data-driven instruction, rigor, and building student agency through increased ownership and engagement. At Ysleta’s Year One elementary school pilots at Pasodale and Ysleta Elementary Schools, students now receive an on-grade level mini lesson for the day, then engage in a combination of individualized station work, collaborative standards-based activities, strategic small group lessons with the teacher, and self-directed work on online content to support their mastery of grade level standards. Students choose their own station work based on the goals they have set with teachers.
With CA Group’s support, Ysleta scaled its model to middle school in Year Two, where the focus was improved data-driven instruction practices to drive small group instruction and personalized station work for students. Over three years of implementation, Ysleta has successful scaled to eight campuses, reached more than 3,000 students, and built significant internal systems and human capital to support this work in the years to come.