Welcome to the eSchool News Conference Information Center‘s special coverage of the Texas Computer Education Association’s 25th Annual Convention & Exposition, taking place in Austin from Feb. 7-11, 2005.

At least 12,000 attendees are expected at the Austin Convention Center for this event, and in the weeks ahead, the eSN Conference Information Center will strive to help them prepare for TCEA 2005.

Right up until the opening of the convention, you’ll find schedules, information about featured speakers, and lists of attending vendors right here. Keep coming back over the next month to see additions to this Center. Even if you can’t make it to Austin, you’ll reap many benefits of this event simply by bookmarking eSN’s conference coverage.

Beginning on Feb. 7, we’ll have our live, real-time coverage of TCEA 2005. That includes daily news, information, and photos taken at the show. No other educational technology publication covers conferences like eSchool News, which goes one step further with reports on the free sessions from our volunteer Conference Correspondents. These educators will review many of the more than 300 free sessions scheduled for TCEA. You’ll get insight from people who agreed to help us cover TCEA just because they want to help other educators integrate technology into their curricula.

TCEA is one of the largest annual state educational technology conferences, and it is staged by the largest state ed-tech organization. The Texas Computer Education Association traces its roots back to 1980, and has played a major role in many education-related success stories that came out of Texas over the past 25 years. TCEA’s primary focus is “integrating technology into the K-12 environment and providing members with state-of-the-art information through conferences, workshops, newsletters, the Internet, and collaborations with higher education and business.”

With 20 Regional Education Service Centers in Texas, TCEA reaches out to at the grassroots level throughout the year, while bringing all of its constituents together for its annual February convention. This year’s event, the Silver Anniversary, promises to be one of the most exciting in the conference’s history.

Organizers say the focus of TCEA 2005 will be “the leading edge of technology training and the latest technology products.” They point to a number of highlights, including a planned presentation by the Charles Dana Center at the University of Texas at Austin, which will conduct workshops on the latest concepts and innovations in teaching math in K-12 schools.

Speeches are a highlight of any ed-tech conference, and TCEA’s Feb. 9 Opening General Session keynote from 2000 Disney American Teacher of the Year Ron Clark should be no exception.

Clark, a North Carolina native, moved to East Harlem in New York to help inner-city students in need of good teachers. His career in education has been so inspiring that Oprah Winfrey gave him her “Phenomenal Man” award and the ABC network will film a Movie of the Week based on his life.

In Austin, Clark will speak about “Teaching Through Adversity, Facing Challenges and Making A Difference.” Clark is author of The Essential 55, which includes the 55 expectations he has of his students.

Other keynote speeches will be delivered by Willard Daggett, president of the International Center for Leadership in Education, and motivational speaker Emory Austin. A Thursday afternoon luncheon will feature award-winning guitarist and speaker Mike Rayburn, who was three times named Americas Campus Entertainer of the Year in a national poll of college students.

In addition to TCEA’s free sessions and keynote speeches, there will be hundreds of company exhibits in Austin. Convention organizers say TCEA will:

  • feature more than 600 ed-tech exhibits of products and services for instructional and administrative software, Internet, LAN/WAN, staff development, desktop/network security, and more.
  • include the sixth annual TCEA State Robotics Contest  set for Wednesday, Feb. 9. The double-elimination contest goes eight rounds to determine the winning teams in two divisions. About 400 Texas students are expected to participate in the contest.
  • present more than 150 workshops on top of the more than 300 free sessions designed to help educators learn to use technology effectively in their classroom instruction.
  • Links:

    TCEA 2005–Information for Attendees http://www.tcea.org/convention/2005/Attendees/Default.asp

    TCEA 2005–Information for Exhibitors http://www.tcea.org/convention/2005/Exhibitors/default.asp

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