A part of the mission of the Center on Innovations in Learning (CIL) is to work with the Regional Comprehensive Centers (RCCs) to build state education agencies’ (SEAs’) capacity to stimulate, select, implement, and scale up innovations in learning. CIL has defined an innovation in learning as the discovery of new and better ways of doing things. Innovation replaces best (standard) practice with better practice, setting new practice standards (Redding, 2012). Innovations may or may not be tied to technology.
The League of Innovators was formed to build capacity of both the RCC system and the SEAs served by it, functioning as both a needs sensing organization and a conduit for information between the SEAs and the RCCs. As an overall goal, the League provides a means for targeted dissemination and for taking the pulse of the field to ensure the relevance of the CIL’s products and services, and to maintain an online community of practice among its members.
Membership in the League of Innovators includes SEA members—2 from each state—who have expertise in curriculum/instruction and in technology. CIL received assistance of the RCCs to identify potential League members. Members who are interested in the work of the League and CIL may be added on request. From the core of those willing to participate, a subset of members comprises the League of Innovators Design Team. The Design Team will coordinate communication, needs sensing, and activities with the full membership. CIL staff maintain ongoing e-mail and telephone communication with the Design Team and all League members, thus gaining critical information about the evolving needs of SEA and enabling the center to provide appropriate services and products. These products range from targeted webinars from experts or SEA personnel immersed in work of interest to other SEAs, to practice guides for teachers and school administrators at all levels, and to tools for the identification and selection of innovations.
The director of each RCC and each RCC’s liaison to CIL are invited to be members of the League.