Meet the winners of our 2013 Tech-Savvy Superintendent Awards

Kevin Baxter
Archdiocese of Los Angeles Elementary Schools

In the Archdiocesan community—an area that is diverse in culture, access to resources, and socio-economic status across three counties—Baxter has inspired transformative change in the schools by chairing a massive technology initiative, the Catholic Communication Collaboration (C3) Pilot.

The 25-school C3 program includes features such as a student information system, learning management system, online content, and one-to-one computing modules for locations that otherwise could not afford the hardware. In the first year of the program, Baxter supported a series of “change management” workshops to ensure the pilot locations felt prepared and supported; in what is currently the program’s second year, the locations have taken advantage of their first annual technology conference with training opportunities. Baxter ensures that the participating schools maintain a Sharepoint page as a resource for technology news, webinar opportunities, and tracking of technology issues. When the pilot project began, all of the schools were iPad-centric, and Baxter helped lead the charge to explain that (1) there are other device options, and (2) a successful initiative is about baseline connectivity, requisite infrastructure, and professional development.

What was intended as a 25-location test run has become an opportunity for all locations. Baxter helped secure price protection for online content providers at all Archdiocese of Los Angeles schools, ensured that all locations are invited to technology training programs, directly facilitated change management, and recently funded more than 100 seats to the Los Angeles County Office of Education Technology Symposium.

Baxter believes the Department of Catholic Schools’ motto, “A Catholic education is an education for life,” and he seeks to ensure that students are successful throughout life and are steeped in an environment that supports technology to help ensure this motto is realized.
Theresa Dunkin
Aptakisic-Tripp Community Consolidated School District 102

With her take-charge attitude, Dunkin has served the D102 school district as principal, assistant superintendent, and superintendent and has brought technology to every learning space in the district over the last seven years.

Today, every classroom is wireless, with multiple devices available for staff and student use. The 2012-13 school year has brought her vision of a personalized technology initiative to fruition, with every fifth and seventh grade student engaged in learning activities supported by personal iPads for use at school and home. Teachers participate in ongoing professional development, and every member of her cabinet and each school board member is connected to the D102 learning network through personal iPads.

Dunkin has led implementation of the core elements of the district-wide Learning Vision Into Action plan, bringing all stakeholders to the table to plan, implement, monitor, and adjust the district’s progress toward “deeper learning” supported by personal technology. What’s more, an intense professional development program known as TTL (Transforming Teaching & Learning) has provided more than 100 hours of training to help the 50 participating teachers transform their instructional practices to meet 21st-entury needs.

Ninety-five percent of D102 students are meeting Adequate Yearly Progress goals, and students participate regularly in morning broadcasts, synchronous and asynchronous collaboration, and multiple conferences to share their knowledge and skills with others. Dunkin established D102 as a member district in EdLeader21, a professional learning community for 21st-century education leaders, in 2011 and has brought the talent and expertise concentrated there to all levels of the organization.

eSchool News Staff

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