WIDS holds third annual International User Group conference, Nov. 5

Waunakee, Wis. – The Worldwide Instructional Design System (WIDS) will host its third annual International WIDS User Group conference, from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., Thursday, Nov. 5., at the Concourse Hotel in Madison, Wis. A nonprofit organization, WIDS provides performance-based curriculum-design software, training and instructional design consulting services to colleges and businesses worldwide. Participants are encouraged to attend an optional pre-conference workshop, “Try Out the New WIDS,” from 1 to 2:30 p.m., Wednesday, Nov. 4.

Gathering from across the globe, instructional designers, trainers and educators will converge at the conference to share ideas and discuss best practices related to instructional design. During the conference, the new WIDS Web-based software prototype, which is currently in the developmental stage, will be introduced. During the pre-conference workshop, attendees will explore and use the Web-based WIDS software and participate in a show-and-tell of the prototype.

 Other presentations on Thursday include, “WIDS 2 Web,” by WIDS Director Judy Neill; “Active Online Learning,” by Nancy Chapko and Margaret Hunter of Gateway Technical College in Wisconsin; “Cool Tools to Enhance Learning and Assessment,” by Sheila Lapp of Northwest Technical College in Minnesota; “Interactive Designing and Assessing Learning Workshop Activities,” by Theresa Butori of Blackhawk Technical College in Wisconsin; “From DACUM to Delivery: The Complete Curriculum Package,” by Dick Joerger of the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities; and “Multimedia Learning: How to Use Audio-visual Media Effectively Based on Principles of Instructional Science,” by Less Howles of Howles and Associates.

The WIDS User Group is one of the few places where instructional designers can meet to talk about innovative ways to design and assess learning,” said Robin Nickel, WIDS associate director. “It offers a unique forum for designers to share challenges and talk with colleagues in similar positions.”

Open to experienced and new WIDS Software users, the User Group conference is $175 before Oct. 1. After this date, registration is $199 per person. Registration includes the pre-conference session. A special discount of $99 is available only to Wisconsin Technical College System members. Registration must be completed by Oct. 30 and can be completed by visiting www.wids.org.

A nonprofit organization, WIDS offers advanced tools and personal support to help clients design effective learner-centered curriculum. To find out more about WIDS, and the organization’s many successes, visit www.wids.org or call 800-677-9437.



Wisconsin to incorporate computer-based testing

A 17-year-old statewide test used to comply with the federal No Child Left Behind law will be replaced with a broader approach to judging how well Wisconsin students are performing, state superintendent Tony Evers said Aug. 27 — and the new system will incorporate computer-based testing, reports the Associated Press. Education leaders heralded the move as a step toward more accountability and said it also might help put Wisconsin in a better position to compete with other states for $4.35 billion in federal education stimulus money under the government’s "Race to the Top" reform program. The new system, which combines state, district, and classroom assessments, will be more responsive to students, teachers, and parents, while also meeting state and federal accountability laws, Evers said. The new tests likely will be computer-based, with multiple opportunities to gauge student progress during the year. A computerized test, in which teachers can find out instantly how well students are learning and where the shortfalls are, is far better than the current system, in which tests are given in the fall and the results aren’t known until near the end of the school year, advocates said…

Click here for the full story


New LanSchool Lite Version Free to North American K-20 Schools

For Immediate Release

New LanSchool Lite Version Free to North American K-20 Schools

Orem, Utah August 27th, 2009


– LanSchool Technologies LLC, a leading provider of classroom management software, announced a new LanSchool Lite version will be available free to North American K-20 schools on September 1st, 2009. LanSchool Lite v7.4 allows teachers, tech coordinators, librarians and school administrators to monitor a thumbnail of student computers in real-time. http://www.lanschool.com/referral-contest on September 1st, 2009. sales@lanschool.com.


"LanSchool invented classroom management software back in 1986. As we’ve travelled to the educational technology tradeshows around the country, at least 50% of teachers are not aware this technology even exists." said Ben Cahoon, vice president of LanSchool. "LanSchool Lite provides real value to schools by allowing them to see a real-time thumbnail of what the students are doing and also introduces them to the concept of classroom management."

LanSchool Lite supports Macs, Windows and Thin Client operating systems. It is a critical tool for monitoring 1:1 schools, libraries, laptop carts and traditional computer labs. With LanSchool Lite you can see student computers in a details view or real-time thumbnails. You can also see the current application, last visited website and monitor battery life.

In order to receive a free copy of LanSchool Lite v7.4 you must work in a K-20 school as a teacher, tech coordinator, IT administrator, Librarian or School Administrator and be willing to share your contact details with LanSchool.

To help spread the news about the free software; LanSchool is giving away a free one year subscription to the full featured LanSchool v7.4 each week to the individual that has the most K-20 verified referral download points. The details about this contest can be found at

For additional information contact LanSchool at 1-877-370-5546 or

About LanSchool Technologies

LanSchool Technologies, LLC, is a leading provider of classroom management solutions for the education market. LanSchool, for over 23 years, has enabled tens of thousands of teachers to easily remove distractions such as the Internet, Instant Messaging, E-mail and Games from the classroom. LanSchool is headquartered in Orem, Utah, with customers and resellers across the world. LanSchool can be found on the Web at www.lanschool.com or by calling 1-877-370-5546.

Press Contact:

Ben Cahoon 801-770-3096 ben@lanschool.com


Project Management Training Online Adds “Advanced Project Management” Courses for PMP PDUs



Project Management Training Online – pmtrainingonline.com – announced today that it has added 6 “Advanced Project Management” courses for PMP PDUs – plus a bundle of all 6 – to its catalog of online project management training courses.  Project Management Training Online provides one of the most extensive offerings of online training courses focused on professional project management that can be found on the internet. 


According to John Reiling, PE, MBA, PMP, President of Project Management Training Online, “We are happy to make these advanced courses available to PMPs who want to enhance their skills in some of the key areas in the field.  These courses build on the foundation of the PMP certification and a solid base of experience and can help professionals on their journey to the next level.  Taken individually or as a collection, they can broaden and deepen a PMPs view of the project management world, help them to handle new challenges in specific areas, and also satisfy their PMP PDU requirement.” 


Consistent with its mission of providing the best selection of time and cost effective training for project managers, Project Management Training Online has made these 6 courses available for those who want to gain rapid, 24×7 access to knowledge in any or all of the following specific areas:  Building Productive Stakeholder Relationship, Project Estimating Techniques, Managing Accelerated Projects, Setting Up a Project Office, Portfolio Management, and Project Management Maturity.  Detailed information on the new advanced project management training can be found on the Advanced Project Management page at Project Management training Online.


Candidates for the PMP or CAPM exams, or current Project Management Professionals (PMPs) interested in PMP PDUs, can experience e-learning and online project management training first hand and try a project management course for free – and earn contact hours or PDUs!  There are complete free trial courses available for PMP Exam Prep, CAPM Exam Prep, or PDUs for current PMPs. 


Project Management Training Online – www.pmtrainingonline.com – provides one of the most extensive offerings of online training courses focused on professional project management on the web.  In addition to the 26 Third Edition and 28 Fourth Edition courses and the PMP exam simulation,  pmtrainingonline.com also provides hundreds online courses where Project Management Professionals (PMPs) can rapidly and conveniently expand their skills in a variety of chosen areas and earn Professional Development Units (PDUs).  A complete listing can be found at Project Management Training Online – Products.  Courses and training aids were created by SkillSoft, Mindleaders, and other e-learning content provides.



Microsoft motivates innovative teachers

Two Indiana high-school teachers will travel to Brazil to showcase their innovative teaching practices

Two Indiana high-school teachers will travel to Brazil to showcase their innovative teaching practices

A tic-tac-toe game based on the Industrial Revolution that uses the principles of universal design to give students multiple ways of learning will be the U.S. representative in a worldwide competition that showcases effective teaching with technology.

The project’s creators, teachers Harriet Armstrong and Autumne Streeval of Columbus East High School in Columbus, Ind., took top honors at Microsoft’s U.S. Innovative Teachers Forum, held Aug. 17. Armstrong and Streeval will travel to Brazil in November to compete in the software giant’s Worldwide Innovative Teachers Forum.

“It is really an honor to have won the U.S. Forum,” said Streeval, who teaches social studies. “We are excited to go to Brazil to learn more about what is going on in education on a global scale. Teachers often struggle with similar challenges, even in very unique settings, but the Worldwide Forum will allow us to collaborate and tackle obstacles together.”

Armstrong, who teaches family and consumer science, added that she hopes to return from Brazil with more ideas and connections to other teachers.

“I see my students as needing a more global view of [the] world in which they live. It would be great to find ways to connect with students in other parts of the world,” she said.

Too often, teachers work in isolation, with few opportunities to show their projects to others and learn from their colleagues. That’s why it was especially beneficial for Armstrong, Streeval, and nearly 40 other educators to be able to demonstrate their projects before a panel of NASA scientists and educational technology experts earlier this month.

Microsoft’s Innovative Teachers program seeks to break through that isolation, while highlighting effective ed-tech teaching practices in the United States and abroad.

“We recognize that innovation is happening in classrooms every day and that teachers are equipping their students with the skills they need to be creative problem solvers and critical thinkers,” said Mary Cullinane director of U.S. Education for Microsoft. “We’re honored to recognize and celebrate the accomplishments of these teachers, and we hope that they inspire others to take risks and raise the bar higher for what’s possible in classrooms across the nation.”


Huge demand far exceeds broadband grants

Broadband Fiber Optics

Broadband Fiber Optics

“Cash for Clunkers” isn’t the only economic stimulus program to attract a lot of takers: The federal government on Aug. 27 said it has received requests for nearly $28 billion from groups that want to expand high-speed internet service in the United States. The total requests outstripped available funds seven to one.

States, counties, Indian tribes, nonprofits, phone companies, libraries, colleges, universities, and others — 2,200 requests in all  — lined up in advance of the Aug. 20 deadline. The government has $4 billion in loans and grants initially available.

The money will be used to connect rural homes to the internet, stimulate interest in getting internet service among groups that don’t use it much, and expand internet access in public locations such as schools and libraries.

The bulk of the requests — representing $23.2 billion — are to build out internet lines in rural and underserved areas. Nearly $2.5 billion was requested for projects to provide broadband education, awareness, training, access, or support, especially among populations where broadband technology has been underused; and $1.9 billion was requested for public computer-center projects, which will expand access to broadband service at public libraries, community colleges, and other institutions.

The National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) and the Rural Utilities Service will pick the winning applicants and announce them in November.

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act directs NTIA to make at least $250 million available for programs that encourage sustainable adoption of broadband services, of which up to $150 million will be allocated in this first round of grants. The stimulus act directs the agency to make at least $200 million available for expanding the capacity of public computer centers, of which up to $50 million will be allocated in the first round.

Though competition appears stiff for the first round of financing, those who lose out will have two more rounds in which to compete before the money runs out. The stimulus allocated $7.2 billion in total funding for broadband projects. (Because some of this money will be used to fund loans, the total dollar amount handed out will be higher than that.)

It is the first time the federal government has made a concerted, large-scale effort to expand internet access to rural and underserved communities nationwide.

The largest phone and cable companies have shown little interest in participating in the program. Qwest Communications International, a phone company that covers vast, thinly populated areas in the West, said it couldn’t make a business case for applying.

“We are excited to see such strong interest in the NTIA’s broadband grant program,” said Ben Scott, policy director at the nonprofit Free Press. “This response to just the first round of grants demonstrates the substantial interest in bringing broadband to all Americans and increasing broadband adoption.”

Scott continued: “As expected, the large incumbent telephone and cable companies do not appear to have applied. But the volume of applicants has discredited complaints that interest in this grant program would be hurt by the nature of a public service/private enterprise partnership. The NTIA can now settle into the task of dispensing infrastructure grants to the best applicants, with the goal of maximizing the utility of our public-service broadband networks. We congratulate NTIA on the strong interest in this program and their efforts to improve broadband access.”

NTIA announced the demand for broadband stimulus grants just two days after a report from the Communications Workers of America (CWA) suggested the United States ranks 28th in the world in average internet connection speeds and is not making significant progress in building a faster network.

The CWA report said the average download speed in South Korea is 20.4 megabits per second (Mbps)–four times faster than the U.S. average of 5.1 Mbps. Japan trails South Korea with an average of 15.8 Mbps, followed by Sweden at 12.8 Mbps and the Netherlands at 11.0 Mbps, the report said, adding that tests conducted by speedmatters.org found the average U.S. download speed had improved by only nine-tenths of a megabit per second between 2008 and 2009.

“The U.S. has not made significant improvement in the speeds at which residents connect to the internet,” the report concluded. “Our nation continues to fall far behind other countries.” (See “Report: U.S. ranks 28th in internet connection speed.”)

In the coming weeks, NTIA will post a searchable online database containing summaries of all applications received, the agency said.


National Telecommunications and Information Administration

Broadband USA (the portal through which to apply for broadband stimulus funding)


New Asics Tigreor 2 ST Rugby Boots available to Order online

The new Asics Tigreor 2 ST rugby boots are available for pre-order at Morrant Sports.

The top end Asics Lethal Tigreor 2 ST, low, soft toe rugby boots are available at a discount.

The uppers on this popular rugby boot are made of steer leather and synthetic leather for optimum performance and durability.

The boots feature many Asics technical specifications including being combination lasted. They boast an HD10 Solyte midsole and an external PU heel counter. All the features combine to give optimum performance and comfort to the player.

The outsole has a six stud configuration making it lightweight and perfect for quick onfield movement.

Sizes range from a UK size 8 up to 14 and include some half sizes .

A full range of new Asics 2009/2010 season rugby boots are now available to order online from specialist rugby equipment retailers and will be available in stores from July 2009.

Established in 1973, Morrant Group Ltd is a family run business with over 35 years experience in mail order team sports equipment. Father, Daughter, Son and staff are working hard every day to ensure that our company achieves its aim.We sell a range of sports gear, including rugby boots and goods. Please visit our website at http://www.morrant.com for further information.


Get online shopping done with discount coupons from deals365.us

The new developments in the technology making us shop in easy and comfortable ways. Without loosing the comfort of sitting at home leisurely, we can get the things to be delivered at our door steps. People prefer shopping on online than shopping at shopping malls, and it is easy. Deals365.us is the resource for the required coupons for most of the online stores. From grocery things to home accessories, from apparels to jewelry, for each and every need you can get the information about the related stores and the list of the sites which are offering the products.
Deals365.us provides the up to date coupons available for all the merchants those are available at the site. Deals365.us is introducing new ways to get maximum discounts on your online purchases. You can be assured that deals365.us will always be the first to provide latest deals and offers from the list of online stores. They will constantly add new merchants and coupon codes for existing merchants, Deals and many more. Visit again and again to get help for all your online purchases. And finally deals365.us equals to discounts. Think once who wouldn’t love to pay less while getting more than they expect.

Find varieties of major stores at deals365.us all at one place and get exciting discounts on utilization of coupons, coupon codes, promo codes. It is the right time for savings on all your purchases. Grab the bargains and win huge discounts



Technology Integration in Education

Technology Integration in Education is one of the interents fastest growing non-profit websites geared towards helping educators and professionals alike.  This Professional learning Network gives you the opportunity to share in discussion and blogs, view and post video, audio and pictures all centered around ways to better integrate technology into the every day learning of students and professionals.  Website recommendations, webinars and lessonplans are shared daily.  Colaborations and groups are forned around topics of interest.  Come join the movement to better integrate technology into the educational setting in a seamless manner.  We can be found as the group Technology Integration in Education on www.linkedin.com where we number almost 2000 members or on Ning at http://tech-in-ed.ning.com where additional resources are shared.



ST. LOUIS, MO – Aug. 27, 2009 –As part of its commitment to enhance collaborative communication between school administrators and parents, the Archdiocese of Washington has elected to equip all 61 of its elementary schools with the automated telephone and Internet-based parental notification system developed by SchoolReach.  Used by over 4,200 schools in 49 states, SchoolReach is the industry’s fastest growing provider of comprehensive emergency notification and general school-to-home communications solutions to public and private schools. 


“Over the past 18 months, the Archdiocese of Washington has been reviewing and updating our emergency management and school safety protocols.  One critical piece is the adoption of one single comprehensive system to communicate with parents and school personnel quickly and easily.  In the past, many of our schools have had to rely on non-tech methods such as ‘phone trees’ and backpack mailings to try to get messages to all of our parents,” said Kelly Branaman, assistant superintendent. “With the addition of SchoolReach, our school administrators will be able to quickly and easily place hundreds of calls instantaneously.”


The popular SchoolReach system provides an effective and affordable way for school officials to send personally recorded messages to parents for emergency alerts and general announcements of timely interest.  School administrators simply record a brief message for delivery to an extensive, or selective, list of parents, teachers or students, simultaneously.  Greeted by the familiar voice of a school representative, after seeing their school’s Caller ID, parents immediately know that the message is important.  The “List-Record-Launch” rapid messaging process takes only minutes for the notification to reach parents. 


Replacing older forms of communication such as newsletters, website postings, or the weekly distribution of folders/envelopes, the notification systems are perfect for swiftly communicating with families about crises such as natural disasters or pandemic diseases, and more common disruptions like weather closings, utility failures, and rumors. Administrators can also use notification technology for routine tasks such as issuing grade level announcements, messages about sports team events, and meeting or tuition reminders.


"Schools struggle with ‘immediate, same day, or night-before’ notices to parents,” said Paul Langhorst, vice president of operations at GroupCast, SchoolReach’s parent company.  “SchoolReach fills this need effortlessly and requires no additional hardware, software, or phone lines to operate the solution. We are very pleased that the Archdiocese of Washington’s Catholic schools recognize the value of having a proactive system like SchoolReach in their communications toolkit.”


About SchoolReach

SchoolReach is a subsidiary of St. Louis-based GroupCast, an instant messaging notification service.  As the leading parent notification service among private schools, and the fastest growing service used by public schools across the country, SchoolReach offers the simplest way to reach parents, staff and students with essential messages.  From weather and schedule changes to attendance tracking and from emergency notification to rumor control, SchoolReach simultaneously delivers the personally recorded message to tens, hundreds, or thousands of individuals and takes only minutes to reach all of its recipients.   More information about SchoolReach or GroupCast can be found at www.schoolreach.com andwww.groupcast.com.


About the Archdiocese of Washington Catholic Schools

The Archdiocese of Washington includes 96 schools educating 29,000 students in Washington, DC and Calvert, Charles, Montgomery, Prince George’s and St. Mary’s counties in Maryland.  Sixty one of the schools are archdiocesan elementary schools.  All Catholic schools in the Archdiocese are accredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools, and 99 percent of Catholic high school graduates are accepted to college.



Media Contacts


Charlotte Andrist @ 770-578-8007 or Charlotte@EicherCommunications.com

Leslie Eicher @ 314-965-1776 or Leslie@EicherCommunications.com