"Listen To Their Voices!" It's Time For Equal Access For ALL Our Students! - PART ONE

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Dale LaFrenz and Tom King – Blogmeisters

The RE@L Blog!

July 4, 2015



UnknownUnknown-1If you listen carefully, you can hear them.They are the voices of 55 million students. They come from the over 2.5 million classrooms of over 130,000 schools. They are asking for our help so they can learn. They say:”What about me?”

What about my rights to learn? they say, Don’t I have equal access to a quality education?” Our teachers ask these young learners very difficult questions in the classroom. Questions are also on the many standardized tests these kids have to take. What can we do to help them find their answers? 


This past week has brought a focus to everyone in the USA on the critical importance of “equal rights” and “equal access” under the law. Regardless, of our own personal beliefs on these current issues, we are fortunate to live in a country that prizes individual rights. Many places in the wide world do not.

Our nation was founded on fundamental rights for all, regardless of race, creed, color, gender or wealth. Our Constitution does not speak directly to our fundamental right to have equal access to learning. Our Founders left the issue of public education to the each state, as they did with many other issues at that time. They did speak to our universal access to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. In the 350 years since that the pursuit of our rights ALSO requires equal access to learning.

Unknown-2Providing “equal access” to each of our students continues to vex us as a nation. Why? For starters, these 55 million learners differ greatly from one to another. Second, we have continued to focus on schools instead of the unique needs of each learner. If we truly want to leave no child behind, we have to focus on each child. Each learner should have a Personal Learning Plan and have access to the resources to make it happen.

imagesStudents need equal access to quality learning that addresses their unique needs. Instead, we have continued to group them. not by their needs, but by their age. If the student’s age is 8, it’s 3rd grade. Freshmen in high school are 13.  This makes no sense at all if a student is not ready to learn the curriculum in that grade. If it was your job to insure that more learners learned more, would you group learners solely by age? It’s past time for our educational leaders, our politicians, even our Courts, to take up this issue of insuring equal access to learning for EACH and everyone of our learners. It needs doing now! A LEARNING PLAN for each learner.

images-1We at RE@L also believe the time is right for “Equity of Learning Access” in American K-12 education. We believe in it so firmly that we create our learning software to encourage and secure greater mastery and better understanding for EACH learner. We further believe that “Learning for all” is not the same as “Learning by each.If each child could learn, all children would learn.

At RE@L our leadership team has grappled with these same concerns back  in the 70′s when we created MECC software. Even then we made certain that the products we designed met the needs of each learner. MECC software was more responsive, more effective, and more popular than our competitors. Our reading levels were more appropriate, the interaction was more engaging, the results were more informative and positive. Now, we are known as RE@L, and still we try to make them better.

At RE@L today we have more tools to use today than ever before. We have both print and online guidelines for teachers who use RE@L software in the classroom. We also provide suggestions for  students and parents who use our apps at home.
Our new apps and software are far more interactive, engaging and productive, too, making use of modern, high tech resources like GPS to solve problems. We talk with the teachers about their technology needs. We talk to kids about what works for them and what doesn’t. We even have a 13 year old teenage spokesperson, named Sam, whose videos speak to the interest of the classroom needs of kids everywhere. In their words, we at RE@L are “with it.”

Why is REAL better, you ask? The answer: Because we care about the success of each learner.
RE@L STEM Investigations
RE@L will soon be releasing a new, resource-rich STEM Water Quality software for upper grades that teaches students how to do real-life research and reporting. All these RE@L products provide resources for teachers and parents too. Students will use them more effectively and learn what they need to know, so they can have access to the knowledge they need and want.


In summary: RE@L firmly believes we must address the needs of EACH learner.
To do that, we must secure the best possible performance and achievement from each learner.


We will not rest on the laurels we established back in our MECC days.
We continue to improve our products to help insure:

Please email your comments or questions to:  comments@realexperiencesatlife.com

Click on the our RE@L Blue Globe below for more information on RE@L:



Tom King & Dale LaFrenz

Dr. Tom King has served for over 40 years as an Adjunct Professor at the University of Saint Thomas in the School of Education. The Saturn School of Tomorrow, formerly a St. Paul Public School, and his visionary response to educational reform, was a lighthouse on the frontier of school change. Tom was an experienced high school teacher of mathematics, a school administrator, and Director of Technology for the St. Paul MN Public Schools. He is also a member of the RE@L Team. Dr. Dale LaFrenz is Chairman of RE@L and one of the founders of MECC Software who brought “Oregon Trail” to millions of K12 kids everywhere. He has written extensively on the history and evolution of Ed Tech. His work in forging new paths for MECC’S “edutainment" software was instrumental in connecting school-markets, kids, teachers and consumer-markets/kids/parents, and now serves as the new launching pad for RE@L apps and software.