Implementing Competency Education in K–12 Systems: Insights from Local Leaders

Chris Sturgis

After five years of interviews and site visits with field leaders, this paper distills best practices from a handful of those converting to competency-based systems. Key highlights include strategies to engage, motivate, and teach all students to proficiency and mastery, shifts in instruction toward deeper learning and meaningful assessments for learning, and new models of distributed leadership and educator empowerment.

The traditional, time-based education system is failing students. Competency education creates a system-wide infrastructure that creates the necessary feedback loops to ensure that students are learning.