Experts: Use national budget crisis as an opportunity

“Going digital has helped our schools in so many ways. Not only is digital and mobile technology an equalizer for students, it’s a necessity for future crisis planning,” she said.

CoSN CEO Keith Krueger took the last position on stage, explaining that if you’re a school leader looking to “master the moment” in a few basic ways, there are some solutions to current school challenges.

For example, schools with a technology access problem should consider lifting bans on student-owned mobile devices and supplementing these with school-owned devices for students who don’t bring their own device. This is essentially what most colleges do, he said, and it can save money and provide 24/7 access to learning. One example of a K-12 district doing this is Forsyth County Schools in Georgia.

For schools with a tech support problem, consider moving to cloud-based computing. The Oregon Department of Education has partnered with Google to deliver its cloud-based productivity software to schools via the web and reportedly saves $1.5 million per year. The Kentucky Department of Education has partnered with Microsoft in a similar fashion.

For schools with limited collaboration or interactivity, consider using free Web 2.0 tools. Birdville Independent School District in Texas is a good example, as the district uses social networks and even YouTube.

“Birdville defined [acceptable] behavior, not the tool,” said Krueger.


CoSN 2011

Department of Education

Meris Stansbury

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