Here’s what you need to know about Betsy DeVos, likely Education Secretary

With his nomination of billionaire Betsy DeVos for U.S. Secretary of Education, President-elect Donald Trump seems to be making good on his campaign promise to promote school choice.

Trump has proposed a $20 million fund to support school choice for students, namely through charters and vouchers. DeVos, who has no professional experience working in schools, is a vocal proponent of school choice and vouchers. Currently, she chairs the American Federation for Children, which promotes school vouchers and scholarship tax credit programs.

[Read the higher education version of this story here.]…Read More

Pearson Realize course content now works with any LMS

Interoperability certification gives teachers, students freedom to assign and use any Pearson content regardless of LMS

Pearson announced a new iteration of its main content delivery system for K-12 schools that will allow them to experience learning, assessment and data applications seamlessly, saving thousands of hours and dollars in the process. Traditionally, teachers, students and administrators have to deal with multiple logins and repetitive data entry. Pearson Realize is now fully compatible with IMS Global’s Learning Tools Interoperability (LTI™) standards, making almost all of the company’s K-12 content and data easy to use, access and analyze, regardless of the school’s learning management system (LMS).

IMS Global is a non-profit organization that sets standards for digital educational content. Leading IMS members like Pearson are committed to creating content and applications that “play nice” with one another so that accessing content from multiple sources and publishers is a unified, continuous experience.

“When we say we put digital content at teachers’ and students’ fingertips, that should be the reality. Now fully compatible with all learning management systems, the digital content delivered through Pearson Realize should make learning and assessing student performance easier, and that’s why we’re committed to interoperability,” said Marc Nelson, vice president of product management at Pearson. “We’re proud to support IMS and the future of digital education, where educators can easily select the digital products that meet their students’ needs without having to worry about whether or not they work together.”…Read More

What to do with millions of dollars for education technology

Businesses meet with Obama, school, to talk how to invest millions of dollars into education technology

money-dollars-educationIn what could be considered a belated holiday gift to education, two of the biggest technology companies with well-documented commitments to education announced on Feb. 4th that not only will the price of critical software and professional development (PD) courses be drastically reduced, millions of dollars will be invested into innovative STEM education programs.

The announcement came at a White House-sponsored event with President Obama and students and teachers at Buck Lodge Middle School in Adelphi, Md.

The Verizon Foundation announced a  multi-year program to drive student achievement in STEM subjects. Over the next three years, the foundation will invest up to 100 million dollars in cash and in-kind contributions in current and new initiatives, which will accelerate PD for teachers on how to effectively use technology to boost student achievement in STEM.…Read More