Educators at the 2008 National School Boards Association’s (NSBA) Technology and Learning (T+L) will no doubt notice an emphasis on 21st-century skills, with sessions covering hot topics such as STEM education initiatives, one-to-one learning, open source solutions, social networking and Web 2.0 tools, and educational gaming.
The conference will focus on three key areas: getting students engaged in learning; connecting parents and the community to the learning process; and transforming district operations and streamlining internal systems.
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This year’s keynote speakers include Stanford University professor and futurist Paul Saffo, education revolutionary Joe Caruso, and educator David Warlick.
In addition to the conference sessions, T+L also will honor three school districts from NSBA’s Technology Leadership Network for outstanding technology achievements. As a Salute District, superintendents will have the chance to share their district’s accomplishments with conference attendees.
The 2008 Salute Districts are Avoca School District 37 in Ill., Genesee Intermediate School District in southeast Mich., and Minnetonka School District in Minn.
"While the Salute Districts were recognized for their overall accomplishments with technology, each highlights an essential element critical to their successes," said Ann Flynn, NSBA’s director of education technology. "Visionary leadership with a commitment to continuous improvement, a robust and reliable infrastructure, and technology professional development embedded in content areas are key components that should be replicated if other districts want to create environments that support 21st century learning."
Avoca School District in Wilmette, Ill., which enrolls nearly 700 students, was selected for its commitment to continuous improvement and its technology literacy initiative. Genesee Intermediate School District in Flint, Mich., is honored for its technology network "GenNET," which transmits voice, video, and data to more than 234 buildings in the district. Minnetonka Public Schools in Minn., which serves 7,800 students, is recognized for its successful integration of technology throughout its curriculum and its commitment to professional development.