Improve Your Child's Education En español
Individual Learning Plans: The 5 Essentials for Success
At the core of the charter school movement and parent-driven education is the use of an individual learning plan for students. An individual learning plan, or ILP, is a working document that establishes a set of learning goals and objectives that incorporates resources, timelines and a means for evaluation.
To be effective and truly individualized, the ILP must focus on the student’s abilities and interests. This doesn’t mean that if a child has astounding artistic ability, math should be left out of the plan; or if history puts them to sleep, they shouldn’t learn about the American Revolution. The ILP will take these factors into account. The parents and teacher must work with the student to design activities, access resources, and develop learning guidelines that will allow the student the best chance for success in accomplishing his or her learning goals.
The ILP is not widely used in the United States. In fact, a recent survey completed by the Education Commission of the States reported that only 19 states require an ILP. And, even more limiting, these state mandates apply predominantly to children who are at-risk. These 19 states require ILP’s as they relate to graduation paths, while about half also require that the plans relate to an employment or career pathway.
As we’re discovering during the initial interviews in our Employability Report Card Project, there is a disconnect between the needs of the workplace and how our schools are preparing young people for those needs. ILP’s are an ideal means of preparing our students for the realities of work. In fact, more and more companies and organizations are utilizing ILP’s for their employees. Forward thinking companies have discovered that in order to compete in the ever-changing global marketplace, they must be “learning organizations”. Done effectively, the ILP is a success tool that they have adopted.
The “Parent-Driven Schools” calls for an ILP for every student. It best ensures that the needs of the student, parents, and ultimately the outcomes for the institution are met. To this end, there are five essentials for ILP success:
The short-term effect of an ILP is to help the student achieve his or her educational goals. However, the lifetime effect is that it teaches the student how to become a lifelong learner. As evidenced by trends in business, the ILP is becoming a more widely accepted tool or strategy to achieve specific results. By teaching the student to use an ILP, he or she will not only already be accustomed to using this tool in a career, but can apply it to any pursuit they may have in life.
|IEM Learning By Choice
4535 Missouri Flat Road, Ste. 1A - Placerville, CA 95667
Phone: 800-979-4436 - Fax: 530-295-3583