Wise summarized the three “looming crises” that he pinpointed in his 2010 brief, “The Online Learning Imperative”: declining state fiscal revenues, a mounting teacher shortage, and increasing global need for workers with post-secondary education.

Cator emphasized the need to increase student achievement, close the achievement gap, and prepare students for a future submerged in technology.

“We just can’t let one more class graduate—or not graduate—without really fixing this crisis,” she said.

Wise and Cator repeatedly stressed that technology should be an important part of any solution to the education system’s problems.

“Digital learning and technology are not silver bullets,” Wise said. “But they do provide us with a great opportunity to provide the tools and innovation to create a more engaging and personalized education for all of our students.”