Late last year the Kami team visited Deborah Leance, a dedicated teacher at Pomona School of Extended Educational Options (SEEO) High School. Having used Kami for almost two years, Kami has been an essential tool for her in her own study, but also the study of her students at SEEO.
Pomona School of Extended Educational Options (SEEO) High School is a dependent charter school offered through Pomona Unified School District and has a dedicated group of teachers and support staff who work hard as a team to help their students realise their talents and experience success in school using a modified independent study model.
At SEEO, the staff embrace the philosophy that all students do not learn in the same way. The staff at SEEO strive in an atmosphere of respect and support, to help their students create their educational experience and that they must “own” their individual plan for success. Through the use of individual work assignment agreements (WAA’s), teachers support and engage students in demonstrating their learning through writing and various assessment activities that go beyond basic recall to higher levels of thinking.
With a programme as unique as SEEOs, there are sure to be some difficulties. At SEEO, staff have very little direct instruction with their students with only two direct appointments with them a week. This enables students to work independently at a pace that works for them. While this certainly has its benefits, there are obviously difficulties as students still want to be able to check in with staff regularly. Like most schools in the United States, SEEO is also looking to cut down on its consumption of paper, and are doing most of their work digitally as the majority of the work they do with documents is done digitally.
Kami offered the best solution to Pomona SEEO High School for working both collaboratively and digitally. When it comes to collaboration, students and teachers have the choice to work on the same document. For Deborah, she can have constant contact with her students, helping them through any difficulties by using tools such as voice annotation tool, highlight tool, and the add comment tool. This has changed the way that students are working as Deborah is finding that students are no longer “regurgitating nonsense”, but they are engaging with text on an interested and emotional level and showing that they have a far deeper understanding of the text. While Kami is a web-based app, it works online and offline, allowing students to work from anywhere, anytime regardless of whether or not they have an internet connection. With the majority of the documents SEEO students and staff are using are digital, all that students need to complete their course work is a device and Kami.