What is United We Learn?
United We Learn is our vision for the future of public education in Kentucky. This vision builds around three big ideas:
creating a more vibrant experience for every student,
encouraging innovation in our schools – especially when it comes to assessment, and creating a bold new future for Kentucky’s schools through
collaboration with our communities. These three big ideas – students, innovation and community – form the vision for the future of public education in Kentucky.
Building on the strength and success of KDE initiatives to date, education stakeholders are working on ways to enrich student experiences in our schools and improve learning outcomes for all students. These ideas will be bold and forward-thinking, motivated by our desire to give all children the equitable and engaging learning opportunities they need for success.
United We Learn means everyone in our Commonwealth – educators, families, students, community members and business leaders – working together to support our public schools in bringing about deep and authentic learning experiences for all students.
Why is United We Learn So Important?
Students across Kentucky are growing up in a globally interconnected world that is accelerating in competitiveness and possibility. We know that every student has the potential for success, but learning opportunities and outcomes have been uneven. While many students and school districts are thriving, others are struggling. Even for those districts with stronger outcomes, we envision a spirit of constant improvement, innovation and sharing the best ideas with others. This is the way Kentucky’s children will realize their full potential and we must ensure high-quality learning experiences to meet the needs of all students.
How Will We Realize This Vision?
Opportunities to engage communities and create deep and meaningful learning experiences for students abound in our Commonwealth. Every district, school and community must aspire to accomplish the vision people from across the state imagined in
United We Learn, and help bring about a
bold new era of education in Kentucky. This is how the three big ideas of
United We Learn appear in the work of KDE and across the Commonwealth:
Vibrant Student Experiences Encouraging Innovation Collaboration with our Communities
A Portrait of a Learner (PoL) is an agreed-upon set of school or district-level aspirations for what every learner will know and be able to do when they leave school. That exit may happen at the end of elementary school, middle school, high school graduation or at any other checkpoint along the way. The Kentucky statewide Portrait of Learner, approved by the Kentucky Board of Education in October 2022, identifies the skills students need to be prepared for an ever-changing world that is driven by technology, human interaction and innovation. This portrait gives school leaders and teachers the framework to design instruction in a way that promotes real-world competencies and job readiness. Kentucky's statewide PoL aligns with the three big ideas of United We Learn and will enable this vision for transforming education in the Commonwealth to come to life throughout our districts, schools and classrooms.
Moving from Vision into Action…
A number of school districts are already doing a great job implementing programs and initiatives aligned with the
United We Learn
vision. That’s a wonderful thing, but we need to keep pushing. This transformation of public education in our Commonwealth will only be successful if we all work together. This is the way we can continue to take our schools and the learning experiences of our students to an even higher level.