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By Denisa R. Superville on September 15, 2014
The standards are expected to be released early next year. Here is a copy of the refreshed standards: Draft 2014 ISLLC Standards 09102014.pdf. The survey can be found here.
In February 2014, Sprint joined the White House and other leaders in the technology and telecommunications community to announce its participation in the ConnectED initiative – a collaborative effort designed to reduce the digital divide. Sprint has committed to provide high-speed wireless broadband service for up to 50,000 students at schools across the country starting in August 2014 and over the next four years. These students will have access to Sprint's high-speed wireless broadband Sprint Spark service outside the classroom – allowing them to take advantage of the mobile learning curriculum and resources of their educational institutions.
Adobe has committed over $300 million in software and professional development services to theWhite House's ConnectED initiative. As part of this $2 billion+ effort from the private sector, Adobe will deliver creative tools and teacher professional development to schools across the United States—all with the goal of helping youth express their creativity and build their skills for future success.
Adobe's donation includes:Creative tools: Adobe Photoshop Elementsand Adobe Premiere Elements (30 licenses for each product per school)eLearning tools: Adobe Presenter 30 licenses per school) and Adobe Captivate (10 teacher licenses per school)Electronic signature tool: Adobe EchoSign(20 seats for teachers and administrators
In addition, Adobe is providing a range ofteacher training resources from the Adobe Education Exchange and Adobe Youth Voices
ASCD EDge - ASCD EDge
Ubiquitous in every sphere of education; the word “technology” is splattered loosely. No subliminal messaging here, the term is to mean that schools with wifi, tablets, one to one laptop programs, and smart boards are preparing students for the future. Simply having a computer doesn’t mean that the curriculum and instruction are contemporary and relevant. Students can be using the internet to research irrelevant and dated content. A word processor does not ensure quality writing competence. When a group of middle school students runs around campus with flip cameras, it is unlikely they will produce a first rate documentary. Perhaps there is some kind of magical thinking, that digital tools will prompt innovative outcomes. I share this concern as a firmly committed advocate for the modernization of learning opportunities.
Most telling is our current obsession with dated assessment forms. Teachers are not encouraged to innovate when their institutions are pushing time traveling to the past. Although mission statements are packed with phrases like “tomorrow’s school” and “careers of the future” and “global preparedness”, the truth is that all fifty states in my country value assessments that are basically identical in format to those used thirty years ago. Multiple choice, short answer essay prompts to de-contextualized paragraphs are the raison de vivre. Some national publishers are creating on-line testing, but the items are still the same type as those used when standardized testing first was developed. Certainly our learners need ACCESS to the global portals and dynamic applications available through digital media in order to become literate and connected, but access is insufficient.
We should pay attention to school faculties, leaders, and individual teachers who are actively and boldly upgrading curriculum content to reflect timely issues and problems and crafting modern assessments such as digital-media-global project based learning opportunities. Website curation, app design, global network research, and video/audio production are indicative of modern learning environments not only for students but for their teachers as well. What might happen if in our discourse we replace the loose use of the word technology with the phrase contemporary learning environments?
Recent news reports have begun to reveal how various analytics companies are now data mining millions of children. The learning analytics company Knewton, for example, claims that 4.1 million students are now using its proficiency-based adaptive learning platform, which has served 3.5 billion total recommendations between May 2013 and May 2014 alone. The role of these predictive analytics platforms and recommender systems in education is increasingly causing political and parental concerns, largely related to privacy. Less acknowledged, however, is the increasingly autonomous and automated capacity of the software algorithms working in the background of these platforms.
Algorithms have become powerful devices in digitally-mediated education. They are present not only in the predictive analytics and recommender systems of adaptive learning platforms, but in the social networking sites where ‘networked publics’ hang out, in the information practices deployed in inquiry learning, in techniques of digital making, and in the ed-tech software promoted in classrooms. To put it bluntly, algorithms are now deeply embedded in the governance of education and learning—where governance means the techniques by which people’s actions, thoughts and ways of conducting themselves are evaluated, shaped and sculpted.
So what do algorithms do, how much power do they have in the social ordering and governance of education, and how might they be influencing the lives of learners? Some recent publications can help us to begin addressing these questions.
What Algorithms Do
In the recent book "9 Algorithms that Changed the Future,” the computer scientist John MacCormick defines an algorithm simply as “a precise recipe that specifies the exact sequence of steps required to solve a problem.” In computer science specifically, he explains, algorithms are the fundamental entities that computer scientists grapple with to accomplish a task, and without them, there would be no computing.
Hillsborough took a different approach. During the 2012–2013 school year, the district executed a comparative pilot, giving iPads to 200 kids and Chromebook laptops to an almost equal number. As other schools rushed into programs they would later scrap, Hillsborough took a more cautious approach, hedging its bets and asking educators: How can we get this right?
The ubiquity of the Internet poses challenges and opportunities for individuals and communities alike. These challenges and opportunities, however, are not evenly distributed across or within individuals and communities. Equitable access to and participation in the online environment is essential for success in education, employment, ﬁnance, health and wellness, civic engagement, and a democratic society. And yet, communities and individuals find themselves at differing levels of readiness in their ability to access and use the Internet, robust and scalable broadband, a range of digital technologies, and digital content.The Digital Inclusion Survey addresses the efforts of a particular set of community-based institutions – public libraries – to address disparities and provide opportunity to individuals and communities by providing free access to broadband, public access technologies, digital content, digital literacy learning opportunities, and a range of programming that helps build digitally inclusive communities.
Below are selected findings from the 2013 Digital Inclusion Survey. Findings are expanded upon in the:2013 Digital Inclusion Survey National Report, which presents detailed findings from the 2013 survey at the national level, and2013 Digital Inclusion Executive Summary, which offers an analysis of key findings from the 2013 survey.
Also available are an interactive mapping tool that combines community level data with 2013 Digital Inclusion Survey data, specific state pages that offer a state-level view of the interactive map along with selected state data analyis, and issue briefs that offer perspectives on key community issue areas such as broadband, access, employment, digital inclusion, digital literacy, and e-government.
Study HighlightsPublic libraries report an overall average of 19.8 public access computers. While city libraries average 40.5 public access computers, rural libraries average 10.1, which is half of the overall average. Suburban libraries average 25.2 computers, while town libraries average 17.6 computers per library outlet.Public libraries report an average download speed of 57Mbps. City libraries report an average subscribed download speed of over 100Mbps and subscribed, as compared to an average subscribed download speed of just over 21Mbps for rural public libraries.Two-thirds of libraries overall report a desire to increase broadband connectivity. However, 58.8 percent of libraries report that budgetary constraints affect their ability to increase bandwidth while slightly less than one-third of libraries report that outside entities make the decisions regarding their branch’s bandwidth.
Nearly all (98.0%) public libraries outlets offer some form of technology training to patrons. City libraries are more likely to offer formal technology training than other libraries. For example, 77.6% of city libraries offer formal computer skills training as opposed to 57.9% of suburban libraries, 47.7% of town libraries, and 32.5% of rural libraries.Nearly all public libraries (99.5%) reported offering education and learning programs. Almost all (98.4%) offer summer reading programs.A vast majority (95.0%) of libraries assist patrons with important employment resources.Nearly 80% of libraries offer programs that aid patrons with job application, such as interview skills and resume development.A majority of libraries (72.2%) help patrons to access and to use employment databases, as well as to access and use online business information resources (58.9%).Three-fourths of libraries overall offer community, civic engagement, or E-government programs. While 85% of city outlets offer these programs, 70% of both town and rural libraries offer them. Nearly all libraries offer patrons assistance in completing online government forms.An overall majority (57.9%) of libraries conduct health and wellness programs. Nearly half (46.3%) of rural libraries offer these programs, contrasted to the nearly three-fourths of suburban libraries that offer them.Over half (55.9%) of libraries offer programs that promote the development of healthy lifestyles.
United States Department of Education
As one of more than 14,000 superintendents leading school districts across the nation, you are on the forefront of the transformation of public education. Technology now allows for personalized digital learning for every student in the nation so long as leaders have the technological infrastructure and human capacity in place to ensure success.
The Future Ready District Pledge is designed to set out a roadmap to achieve that success and to commit districts to move as quickly as possible towards our shared vision of preparing students for success in college, careers and citizenship. The U.S. Department of Education seeks to encourage and support superintendents who commit to taking a leadership role in this transition with recognition and resources to help facilitate this transition to digital learning.
In June of 2013, the President launched the ConnectED Initiative to provide 99% of students in the nation with access to high-speed Internet connectivity at the classroom level. Coupled with two billion dollars from the federal E-Rate program, increased flexibility in the use of federal funds, and billions of dollars in additional commitments from the private sector, progress towards improving the nation’s physical infrastructure has already been dramatically accelerated.
However, in order for these resources to leverage their maximum impact on student learning, schools and districts must develop the human capacity, digital materials, and device access to use the new bandwidth wisely and effectively. The Future Ready District Pledge establishes a framework for achieving those goals and will be followed by providing district leaders with additional implementation guidance, online resources, and other support they need to transition to effective digital learning and achieve tangible outcomes for the students they serve.
The U.S. Department of Education is calling on superintendents like you who lead district, charter, and private schools to join us in taking the Future Ready District Pledge and working to develop, implement, and share your technology plan with other districts so they can learn from your successes and challenges along the way.
Thank you for all you are already doing to improve the education for our nation’s students. Do not hesitate to reach out to us for support. We stand ready to help you become a Future Ready district.
US secondary schools now have a wealth of resources to inspire students in science, technology, engineering, arts, and math (STEAM) subjects with Autodesk’s Design the Future program, which includes:Free* Autodesk design software (Autodesk Education Master Suite and Autodesk Entertainment Suite Ultimate)Free project-based curricula (aligned to Common Core, ISTE and many state standards)Free etraining for educatorsFree certification for educators
Autodesk’s Design the Future program empowers educators to help students develop a lifelong love for STEAM subjects with resources developed by educators, for educators. Get started today to introduce your students to the world of design and help students prepare for successful careers!
REGISTER NOWSpotlightPresident Obama recognizes Autodesk for ConnectED
President Obama discusses the #ConnectED initiative, and how Autodesk and other tech and telecom leaders are helping bring classrooms into the 21st century. Learn more.
Supports creativity and the teaching of critical thinking and problem-solving skills through the use of 2D and 3D software tools.
Helps students see a dynamic connection between science, technology, engineering, arts, and math topics to prepare them for higher education and careers in design-related fields such as architecture, engineering, and digital arts.
Supported by the Autodesk® Digital STEAM Workshop, which aligns to Common Core and ISTE standards, curricula offers educators a new way of teaching project-based learning through technology that supports the design thinking process to introduce students to projects through real-time 3D, storytelling, and short, easy-to-follow videos.
SlideShare, a platform owned by LinkedIn for sharing presentations, documents, infographics and other files, is now completely free to use. As TechCrunch notes, the optional Pro tiers that existed before... Keep reading →
Via Tom D'Amico (@TDOttawa)
Dr. Gordon Dahlby's insight:
Two weeks ago, I had the privilege of facilitating a discussion for a webinar for alumni of Georgetown University titled, “Conversations are the Work of a Leader.”
In spite of my limitations as a presenter, there was a lot of appreciative feedback about the messages conveyed: that as senior managers and leaders we need to be connected with our people, and not just through e-mail, newsletters and town hall meetings. We need to get out of our offices, off our executive floors and speak with the people who are doing the work of our companies.
There were poignant comments and questions during and after the webinar, such as, “I wish my boss was listening. He doesn’t get it,” and, “How do we get this message to our senior managers? They spend most of their time talking to each other, not to us.”
There were many similar comments and questions. Clearly this subject sparked interest; people feel strongly that conversations are vitally important. We need to understand that conversations truly are the work of a leader.
There is the adage, “Managers focus are results; leaders focus on people.” That really should be “leaders focus on results and people,” as in today’s hyper-competitive business environment, we must hit our financial goals or we may not keep our jobs. But how are we going to keep our good people energized and engaged if we don’t invest the time to know them as our team members and what is important to them?
Every business is a people business. Our relationships with our clients are essential to our success — with external clients and, equally important, with our internal clients, our people. Yes, we must think of our people as our internal clients. They are the ones doing the work of our companies and they deserve our attention and respect. And the better the quality of our relationships, the better we’ll do as leaders and in our businesses.
Here’s compelling background: Morale in business today is low, witness that 40% of the workforce does not feel appreciated and 70% of the workforce does not feel fully engaged!
In my leadership consulting and coaching work, I repeatedly hear comments like, “I see our top people occasionally — in the lobby of our building. They seldom come out of the executive wing.”
Senior managers spend up to 50% of their time in meetings, and much of their remaining time speaking with each other, on calls, and in front of their computers. Most of their communication is through e-mails and or is delegated to those who report to them.
We have to free ourselves up. We have to make our meetings shorter, more efficient and more productive, and then take the time for conversations with our people.
Read the book “The 100/0 Principle: The Secret of Great Relationships” by Al Ritter. Al tells his story about how he lost his team members. They didn’t want to work for him any longer because he was driving them hard without relating to them as people.
Our people need to feel they are:Appreciated and valuedHeard, and their ideas matterAn important member of a teamLearning, growing and advancing
Everyone wants to be successful, and their professional development is our responsibility as well as theirs.
Servant leadership is worth studying, as it is a philosophy that can help us be most effective with our leadership responsibilities. It is about serving first, serving those with whom we work, and that is more important than the power and perhaps material possessions that result from our position.
A test of our being a servant leader is whether or not our people feel they are learning, growing and succeeding.
The way we help our people learn, grow and succeed is by being there with them — mentoring, teaching, encouraging, coaching them, helping them feel appreciated, inspired and empowered.
There is a wonderful quotation, “To become truly great, one has to stand with people, not above them.”
The Next DebateIn the months ahead, FCC officials have their eye on other, potentially volatile issues affecting E-rate. Some education advocates are calling for the program’s overall budget to be increased to as much as $5 billion a year, to meet overflowing demand.
Commissioner Pai, who has criticized what he sees as over-spending within the E-rate program, predicted at the July FCC hearing that Democrats on the commission will push for an increase in the program’s budget after the November mid-term elections, when doing so is more politically palatable.
by Sean Cavanagh 8/1/2014
Dr. Gordon Dahlby's insight:
we’re moving from an environment in which every classroom had to be connected to the Internet, to every student needing to have access
Although Software as a Service (SaaS) applications such as Microsoft Office 365 hold wide appeal, migrating is not simply a matter of moving to the cloud — it takes time and effort. As with all projects, the more planning and preparation IT managers can do, the more likely they are to succeed. What follows is some advice for organizations that are about to embark on an Office 365 implementation. Tackling Domain Verification One of the first steps in an Office 365 migration is a domain verification. Office 365 can be configured to use an existing domain name, but the organization has to prove to Microsoft that it owns the domain name. The domain verification process involves adding a record to the DNS server. This record is typically a TXT record and contains text provided by Microsoft. Once the DNS record has been added, Microsoft verifies its existence and uses the record as evidence of domain ownership. Next, verify that the organization is running supported versions of Exchange and SharePoint on premises. Those who are running Exchange Server 2003 will need to update to a newer version before migrating to Office 365 unless they have a third-party tool that supports legacy migrations. How to Approach Exchange Server Migration Exchange Server migrations can be involved, primarily due to the relationship between Exchange Server mailboxes and Active Directory user mailboxes. The first decision to make involves choosing a migration method. There are two main approaches to Exchange Server migrations. One option is to perform a cutover migration. Cutovers are the easiest type of Exchange Server migration, but are only suitable for organizations with fewer than 1,000 mailboxes. Furthermore, cutover migrations require all of the mailboxes to be migrated as a part of a single migration batch. Although cutover migrations are intended to be simple, a number of different tasks must be completed first in order to prepare for the move. For instance, IT managers must configure Outlook Anywhere for an on-premises Exchange Server environment. This will make it easier to redirect Outlook clients once the mailboxes have been migrated. Incidentally, organizations will need to make sure they’re running a supported version of Outlook. Microsoft provides instructions for making a cutover migration at TechNet. The other migration method is a staged migration, which involves setting up a hybrid Exchange Server deployment. This method is more difficult, but supports long-term coexistence and the ability to move mailboxes back and forth between Exchange and Exchange online. Choose this method for migrations involving more than 1,000 mailboxes. According to some estimates, there are 200 steps involved in planning for and working through a staged migration. Microsoft offers a free online tool that can assist with the Office 365 migration process as it pertains to Exchange Server. The Exchange Server Deployment Assistant asks several questions about deployment goals and then provides instructions for working through the migration process.