Karen Cator will attend CoSN's 2010 conference and share her thoughts on technology in schools.

Karen Cator will attend CoSN's 2010 conference and share her thoughts on technology in schools.

The 2010 Consortium for School Networking (CoSN) Conference, which runs Feb. 28-March 3, 2010, will focus on innovation, ingenuity, and insight and will help district technology leaders from the public and private sectors learn how technology can improve and transform school technology.

Web 2.0 collaborative tools in education hold the potential to bridge national and cultural divides and remove barriers created by time and location.  Yet to date, formal education has largely failed to harness the power and promise of these new tools to create greater global awareness and understanding.

The 2010 CoSN International Symposium will explore major efforts to foster global understanding particularly with the use of Web 2.0 tools.  The Symposium will also consider organizational and logistical issues which hamper these efforts.  Presentations by and conversations with policymakers from around the world will highlight ways in which global understanding can become a serious and widespread component in teaching and learning in schools.

The Framework for 21st Century Skills by the Partnership for 21st Century Skills makes the compelling case that global awareness is a core theme which must be woven into the basic curriculum. Learning from and working collaboratively with individuals representing diverse cultures, religions and lifestyles in a spirit of mutual respect and open dialogue in personal, work and community contexts are essential skills.

The time has passed when the vast majority of citizens in any country can be isolated from other countries, cultures and peoples without disadvantage to their personal and national well-being. Students who leave schools without the skills to work and live in a world of different cultures, languages, traditions, and beliefs will be at a serious disadvantage to thrive in the 21st century.

CoSN will facilitate a global conversation about how educators can use ICT/collaborative tools to develop global awareness and understanding in schools, and play a role in defining a compelling educational agenda.

Current members of CoSN are invited to a special conversation with White House Chief Technology Officer Aneesh Chopra and U.S. Department of Education Director of Education Technology Karen Cator at the CTO Forum during the CoSN Annual Conference.

Chopra will share his vision for harnessing technology and innovation to transform the economy, particularly through public policies, interoperability standards, infrastructure, research and development, and the needs of the 21st Century workforce. He’ll talk about his work in Virginia creating open platforms for school learning materials and his vision for eGovernment.

Cator, a longtime friend of CoSN and the education technology community, is the new lead at the U.S. Department of Education on education technology.  Cator will share her views on the pivotal role that education technology leaders must play in transforming education and her predictions about how technology will be considered as Congress reauthorizes the Elementary & Secondary Education Act.