technology initiatives

5 innovative tech initiatives happening in schools today


What technology initiatives are other schools and districts proud of?

As the school year gets underway across the nation, many schools and districts are launching new technology initiatives and programs designed to improve teaching and learning.

Educators love to share their successes, learn from the success of other schools and districts, and they also love to share lessons they learned along their journey.

eSchool Media and Xirrus have teamed up on the Innovate to Educate Awards to give a national platform for educators to share what they’re most proud of in their schools or districts. Here, we’ve highlighted the successes of five awards program applicants. Want to apply for the awards? You can do that right here.

Pequannock School District
Jeryl-Ann Charlene and Asaro Valero, Teachers
One of the district’s top technology initiatives:
Fifth and eighth grade students partnered on a peer-reviewed argument writing assigment. After a couple days of review, the eighth grade students connected individually with the fifth grade students via Google.hangout, and they used their Chromebooks. Each student had a clean hard copy of the specific essay in front of them so that the discussion would be easy. The face-to-face contact helped the eighth grade students to stay grounded in their goals, and the fifth grade students felt honored to be working with the ‘big kids.’

Next page: Career opportunities for students with disabilities and more

West Chester Area School District
Nora Wheeler, Principal, Westtown-Thornbury Elementary School
One of the district’s top technology initiatives:
Wheeler worked to revise the school’s vision into being a model of 21st century teaching and learning with continual opportunities for all students to demonstrate creativity, critical thinking, collaboration, and communication in order to show growth and sustain high student achievement. Next, she led the purposeful integration of iPads after growing the supply. Finally, Wheeler started targeted professional development for teachers. As a result, the school saw an exponential rise in daily technology use.

Shenandoah County Public Schools
Jane Waters, Principal, Central High School
One of the district’s top technology initiatives:
Central High School implemented the use of the Bug in the Ear Technology to enhance educational and vocational opportunities for students with disabilities as they strive for independence. Educators are able to coach students through a variety of situations from afar, giving them the confidence and skills to participate in mock job interviews and other daily tasks that many take for granted. In addition, the Bug in the Ear equipment is utilized to coach teachers in the classroom setting to improve their instructional delivery, classroom management, and implementation of the Competent Learner Model.

Tiverton School Department
Laurie Dias-Mitchell, Principal
One of the district’s top technology initiatives:
Dias-Mitchell wrote the grant that that included the installation of a SMALLab (situated multimedia arts learning lab), one of two in the northeast, with the other located at MIT in Boston. The SMALLab is integrated across science units and grade levels and has attracted observers from other school districts in Massachusetts as well as in Rhode Island.

Calcasieu Parish School Board
Misty Savario, ITEC/Tech Showcase 1st Grade Teacher, Prien Lake Elementary
One of the district’s top technology initiatives:
Savario is Lead Elementary Impact teacher for the district. She is collaborating with the district’s technology department to help train all 1st grade teachers to use digital learning centers. These digital activities will be aligned with 1st grade ELA CCSS and objectives. Teachers will learn how to integrate technology using the SAMR model in their classrooms and will build activities they can use with students.

Stay tuned as we highlight more Innovate to Educate applicants and their technology success stories.

Laura Ascione

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