2001 Tech-Savvy Superintendent Awards

In Iowa City, Grohe spearheaded a community and business initiative that financed the district’s technology infrastructure. In her decade as its superintendent, Iowa City became a leader in the state in technology integration for instruction.

Upon joining Kent in 1999, Grohe clearly communicated her vision for integrating technology throughout the curriculum. It was Grohe’s leadership and ability to communicate a vision that proved instrumental in passing an $18 million technology levy, which district leaders hope will take this already award-winning district to an even higher level of technology literacy for all students.

Under Grohe’s leadership, much has been put into place to move Kent School District toward increased student achievement and accountability. The Kent School District web page, a Smithsonian award-winner, shows her dedication to excellence in the delivery of technology to students. Her impact on education is recognized across the country, as she was selected as the 1998 National Superintendent of the Year. She also was honored with a “Promising Technology Model Recognition Award” in 2000 by the American Association of School Administrator’s now-defunct TED-TAC (Technology Efficient District-Technical Assistance Center) program for her district’s IntraWeb project.

Grohe earned a bachelor’s degree from Clarion State College, a master’s degree from Ohio University, and a doctorate in urban education from the University of Milwaukee. She contributes a monthly technology column to Converge magazine in collaboration with Eliot Levinson, chairman of the Washington, D.C.-based ed-tech consulting firm BLE Group.

Paul Hagerty, superintendent of Seminole County Public Schools in Florida

From establishing the first Apple Lab in Georgia’s first elementary math-science magnet school in the late 1970s to embracing a relational database approach to administrative and instructional management in the mid-1980s in Springfield, Mo., Hagerty has put his school systems on the leading edge of technology use.

Since Hagerty became superintendent of schools in Seminole County, every classroom and office has been equipped with voice mail and a telephone, and every employee has an eMail account. The district, which enrolls about 60,000 students, features a local area network (LAN) in every school, with a minimum of four drops in every classroom providing full internet access, and a high-speed WAN that uses fiber optics and T-1 lines. Five schools offer magnet technology programs featuring specific technology curricula and a two-to-one student-to-computer ratio, and the district is developing a high school devoted to a technology-based curriculum as well.

The district’s schools use an instructional management system that ensures their curriculum, instruction, and assessment are correlated to state and national standards. Seminole County also employs a student information system that has query capabilities, state reporting, and a relational database for flexibility of data access. Each school has a technology facilitator who is responsible for integrating the use of technology into the classroom. Technology technicians are available to perform equipment repair and network support in the schools and administrative offices. The district also has established its own computer store to ensure the best prices and adherence to a single equipment standard.

Hagerty, who has been an educator for 40 years and superintendent for 25, also worked as a systems engineer for IBM. He received his bachelor and master’s degrees in mathematics from Marquette University and his Ph.D. from Florida State University.

Spence Korte, superintendent of Milwaukee Public Schools in Wisconsin

Korte is a dynamic and innovative educator with 25 years of experience in the Milwaukee Public Schools (MPS). He served as principal of the district’s Hi-Mount Community School for 14 years and is credited with being the driving force that turned Hi-Mount into a technology-rich school that is a model for local decision making, putting power into the hands of teachers and parents.

Korte’s accomplishments as principal at Hi-Mount are well-documented. In his time there, he developed the school into one of the most fully computerized elementary instructional programs in the nation. Hi-Mount was designated an Ameritech SuperSchool in 1994, with a student-to-computer ratio of two-to-one. The school has been featured in numerous articles and publications for its innovative reforms, including an April 1995 cover story on education in Business Week magazine.

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