#GoOpen Washington

Washington Joins #GoOpen Initiative and Launches OSPI Open Policy

Washington is pleased to join the #GoOpen initiative, adding its voice to a cohort of states recognized by the U.S. Department of Education for their commitment to support school districts and educators transitioning to the use of quality, openly-licensed educational resources in their schools.

Additionally, the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI) has launched a new open policy that requires all copyrightable intellectual property created by OSPI employees, contractors, and grantees to be openly licensed. This policy will allow all stakeholders to realize the educational impact from the substantial investments the state, the federal government, and private foundations make in educational resources created by or for OSPI.

In 2012, the state Legislature directed OSPI to create a library of openly-licensed courseware aligned to state learning standards and an associated awareness campaign. Since then, the Open Educational Resources (OER) Project has been working with districts to explore OER as an important district-level instructional materials strategy and provide reviews, resources and guidance to help with effective implementation.

Washington is proud to:

  • be the first state to pass legislation funding full-time staff to oversee the development of a library of reviewed resources and promote OER adoption,
  • provide small grants to districts developing their own OER core instructional materials or create OER Users’ Groups to share ideas, define best practices, and champion effective distribution and implementation of resources,
  • be featured as a selected state OER initiative in CCSSO’s OER Stories, Policies, and Resources and have a district OER Case Study in the State Educational Technology Directors’ Association’s OER in Action: Implementation Case Studies, and
  • have one of our districts (Bethel School District) serve as an ambassador school in the #GoOpen campaign.

The Washington OER Project wishes the #GoOpen campaign every success and is happy to be a partner in the effort. Details of our strategy are below.

#GoOpen State Commitments

  1. Adopt/Implement a statewide technology strategy that includes the use of openly-licensed resources as a central component.
    As the state educational technology plan is updated during 2016-17, this strategy will be called out in statewide initiatives.
    Washington State Educational Technology Plan
    To support this strategy, OSPI has already worked with the Washington State School Directors’ Association to craft a new model instructional materials selection policy that includes consideration of OER and digital materials. This policy clarifies that instructional materials for consideration may include OER and encourages their use by teachers, with the understanding that OER materials are subject to the same selection and adoption processes as more traditional materials.
    2020 Course Design, Selection, and Adoption of Instructional Materials
  2. Develop and maintain a statewide repository solution for openly-licensed resources.
    The OER Commons Washington Hub is the place where districts curating and creating OER can share their resources. Districts creating OER can either post links to their resources or use the authoring tools directly within the Hub. The Washington Hub is searchable across all districts and users may review materials using the platform-embedded EQuIP and Achieve OER rubrics.
    OSPI will share all instructional materials from legislatively-mandated initiatives on the Washington Hub. This includes resources identified in its Digital Citizenship initiative and the Since Time Immemorial – Tribal Sovereignty in Washington State curriculum.
    OSPI has also developed the Reviewed OER Library, a catalog of openly-licensed material that has been reviewed for alignment with state learning standards. Expert teachers from across the state reviewed OER using the same rubrics that would be used for traditionally published material. This library, on the OER Project website, includes reviews and links to 24 full course mathematics curricula and 60 ELA units. A Reviewed OER Library group on our Washington Hub also provides links to these resources and districts can use the embedded rubrics on the site to conduct their own evaluation.
  3. Develop the technical capability to publish OER to the Learning Registry.
    The OER Commons Washington Hub meets the requirements of the #GoOpen Initiative for OER publishing to the Learning Registry. OER Commons has been developed by the Institute for Knowledge Management in Education (ISKME), a founding partner and key advisor on the Learning Registry.
  4. Participate in a community of practice with other #GoOpen states and districts to share learning resources and professional development resources.
    Barbara Soots, OSPI OER Program Manager is a co-lead for the Content Vetting/Creation workgroup for the #GoOpen States. Washington is always glad to participate in communities of practice with other states. We are happy to share successes, lessons learned, and all Washington resources that have been developed in support of OER outreach, awareness, and vetting.
  5. Create a webpage to share the commitment to #GoOpen and document the state’s progress.
    The OER Project Webpage includes detailed information on OER and guidance on their effective implementation. The Reviewed OER Library, OER grantee project reports, archived webinars, slide templates, handouts, and additional resources are all available on this site. Included here will be information regarding Washington’s participation in the #GoOpen initiative.

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