What is Learning Sciences International’s history?

Before Michael D. Toth founded Instructional Empowerment (IE), he founded another education services company, Learning Sciences International (LSI) in 2002. Michael left Learning Sciences International in 2022 to create a new company that better aligns with his and our team’s social mission of ending generational poverty and eliminating racial achievement gaps by transforming core instruction.

What was Learning Sciences International’s purpose in the education world?

Michael originally founded Learning Sciences International with the goal of measuring the impact of professional development on teacher practice. The name Learning Sciences International came from the concept of “the science of online learning” and the idea of bringing together research-based strategies and new technology to innovate traditional professional development education courses. Learning Sciences International was located in Blairsville, Pennsylvania, and also had an office in West Palm Beach, Florida. Before founding LSI, Michael had been the President of the National Center for the Profession of Teaching and a university faculty grant director for research and development grants.

What was the Learning Sciences International Applied Research Center?

Michael developed an Applied Research Center at Learning Sciences International and worked with distinguished research partners including Dr. Robert J. Marzano to create the Marzano Evaluation Center; CASEL – The Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning – to provide and validate their schoolwide SEL measure; Dr. Dylan Wiliam; and the Harvard Graduate School of Education’s Ecological Approaches to Social Emotional Learning (EASEL) Laboratory. LSI also partnered with state departments of education, the Wallace Foundation, and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to implement lasting reforms in teaching, learning, and instructional leadership in school districts.

What school districts did Learning Sciences International partner with?

Learning Sciences International partnered with a wide range of districts including Caroline County Public Schools, Des Moines Public Schools, Evansville Vanderburgh School Corporation, Metropolitan School District of Lawrence Township, The School District of Palm Beach County, Putnam County School District, Pinellas County Schools, Hillsborough County Public Schools, and School District U-46, plus many others. LSI was the number one school turnaround provider with a 100% success rate in turning around partner schools from when the company started the work with these low-performing schools in 2018 until 2022.

What important topics was Learning Sciences International focused on?

Learning Sciences International published articles and resources on its website (learningsciences.com) addressing the most critical pain points for K-12 educators, including strategies for school improvement planning, core instruction, instructional leadership, the Marzano evaluation system, and student engagement.

How did Learning Sciences International grow?

As Learning Sciences International evolved away from online learning for teachers and education leaders, the company became focused on core instruction and transforming the teaching and learning process to make it more empowering for students and teachers. Over Learning Sciences International’s 20-year history, LSI’s Applied Research Center created systems and structures for students to engage in rigorous, standards-based tasks that build knowledge with peers in collaborative, interdependent teams. Learning Sciences International supported teachers, principals, and district leaders with their instructional vision, initiatives, and goals for improvement, providing expert knowledge of designing effective teams that strengthened instructional systems and improved outcomes for ALL students. Our team could see our positive impact on students growing as our new direction emerged.

A bright future with Instructional Empowerment

Now, Instructional Empowerment is committed to bringing you the same instructional expertise, backed by the same research our team developed in more than 20 years of working with schools across the country through Learning Sciences International. As Instructional Empowerment, we can fully focus on our social mission and our name better communicates that we help schools empower students, teachers, and leaders with the agency to drive their own learning and equip ALL children to thrive beyond school.

We welcome everyone who knew our team at Learning Sciences International to now join us at Instructional Empowerment.