McREL forms strategic partnership with Discovery Education supporting the creation of dynamic digital learning environments Elizabeth Hillman, Discovery Education 240-662-2664, firstname.lastname@example.org Stephen Wakefield, Discovery Education240-463-2894, Stephen_Wakefield@discovery.com (June 7, 2016) – Today, McREL International announced a new strategic partnership with Discovery Education supporting teacher leaders nationwide as they create dynamic digital learning environments. Through this new collaboration, McREL will support Discovery Education’s global efforts to grow the capacity of teacher leaders by developing innovation configuration (IC) maps for Discovery Education’s Digital Leader Corps. Discovery Education’s Digital Leader Corps is a comprehensive professional development model that builds and nurtures a network of teacher leaders to design and implement successful and innovative teaching strategies that can be shared with their peers. Featuring a unique combination of professional learning, pedagogy and tools, the Digital Leader Corps helps participating educators learn to integrate educational technologies and digital media into classroom instruction and create dynamic learning environments that meet the needs of all students. Digital Leader Corps provides participants with continuous customized, job-embedded consultation throughout the process with on-going modeling, coaching and feedback from Discovery Education experts in the pre-planning, stakeholder communications, and implementation phases. IC maps identify the major components of an innovation, capturing current practice and describing the steps for achieving implementation goals—placing these on a continuum, with weak or low-level implementation at one end and ideal or high-fidelity implementation at the other. The construction and use of an IC map communicates a common set of behaviors and expectations related to the implementation of a new initiative, such as the integration of technology with instruction, and provides a unique tool for teacher reflection, feedback, and assistance throughout the implementation process. With McREL’s support, Discovery Education’s Digital Leader Corps participants are increasing their capacity to develop and use IC maps, which will help drive even deeper implementation of Digital Leader Corps and other improvement initiatives guiding the professional learning of digital leaders. “By using IC maps within the Digital Leader Corps environment, participating teacher leaders will gain additional clarity on the key components of their roles and have a pathway of clearly described, increasingly sophisticated behaviors that can be supported and strengthened for greater impact and implementation success,” said Dr. Dale Lewis, a senior director at McREL who is leading the project with Discovery Education. “Discovery Education is pleased to work with McREL to integrate innovation configuration maps into the powerful Digital Leader Corps model,” explained Dr. Karen Beerer, Discovery Education’s vice president of learning and development. “The IC maps are another powerful tool supporting the growth of the strong pedagogical practice needed to create the dynamic digital learning environments today’s students need for college and career readiness.” For more information on McREL’s consulting, research, analysis, and evaluation services, visit www.mcrel.org. For more information on the Digital Leader Corps, or other services and initiatives from Discovery Education, visit www.discoveryeducation.com. About McREL International McREL International is a non-profit, non-partisan education research and development organization that turns knowledge about what works in education into practical, effective guidance and training for teachers and education leaders across the U.S. and around the world. About Discovery Education Discovery Education is the global leader in standards-based digital content for K-12, transforming teaching and learning with award-winning digital textbooks, multimedia content, professional development, and the largest professional learning community of its kind. Serving 3 million educators and over 30 million students, Discovery Education’s services are in half of U.S. classrooms, 50 percent of all primary schools in the UK, and more than 50 countries. Discovery Education partners with districts, states and like-minded organizations to captivate students, empower teachers, and transform classrooms with customized solutions that increase academic achievement. Discovery Education is powered by Discovery Communications (NASDAQ: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK), the number one nonfiction media company in the world. Explore the future of education at www.discoveryeducation.com.