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Expanded Learning


What is Expanded Learning?

Expanded Learning through the Highlander Institute offers supports to schools and districts around rethinking where, when, and how learning takes place for students and their families.  As Institute partner sites look to incorporate services to meet the needs of their diverse learners while integrating technology innovations into classroom methodologies, it is becoming exceedingly apparent that such reforms are hard to change within the existing framework of the traditional school day.

With six years of experience piloting premier school-wide expanded learning projects at Highlander Charter School and specialized content-area programs at partner sites such as Cumberland Public Schools and Sophia Academy, the Highlander Institute is able to provide partner sites with an array of services that use time as a resource in order to create sustainable change.   Services include:

  • Research and consultation regarding school schedule changes
  • Increased learning time within the school day
  • Inquiry-based enrichment programming
  • Program alignment with common core state standards
  • Specialized education services and interventions
  • Staffing
  • Creation and implementation of school-wide before, after, and summer programming
  • Family engagement and workshops
  • Organizational supports

“Given the many demands made of schools today, the wonder is not that they do so poorly, but that they accomplish so much.  Our society has stuffed additional burdens into the time envelope of 180 six-hour days without regard to the consequences for learning.” 

Prisoners of Time (1994) National Education Commission on Time and Learning

Expanded Learning Blog


Adaptive Software: Friend, Not Foe

Laura Jackson, Highlander Institute February 25, 2015 In my work supporting blended learning in Rhode Island and the surrounding region, one of the push-backs I occasionally hear is, “Why would.. read more

ELO photo

Highlander Students Explore Expanded Learning Opportunities

Jen Bonin, PhD from RI College, discussed natural disasters and meteorology with 9th grade students in preparation for Expanded Learning Opportunities at Highlander Charter School’s High School.  This program, supported.. read more


What is an EdCamp?

  On November 3, 2012, a collaborative effort that included the Highlander Institute, hosted the first ever EdCamp in Rhode Island at Rhode Island College! Now, you may be asking.. read more


Kindergarten Teacher Blogs to Communicate with Parents

Marlene Viveiros, kindergarten teacher at the Highlander Charter School reached 500 views on her classroom blog today! She started her blog this school year as a way to communicate with.. read more


Common Core and Expanded Learning

Just last month, the Forum For Youth Investment published a commentary entitled “The Common Core Standards:  What Do They Mean For Out-Of-School Time?”  This article best describes the great work.. read more