PRODUCTS, SERVICES & EVENTS

2/27/15

Mississippi Department of Education Adds iCEV to List of State-Approved Curricula

State embraces shift toward modern CTE instruction by approving CEV Multimedia’s online platform and curriculum

Lubbock, Texas (PRWEB) February 26, 2015

CEV Multimedia, a leading producer of Career and Technical Education (CTE) curriculum resources, announced today that the Mississippi Department of Education has added iCEV, an online platform that produces and delivers comprehensive educational content, as a state-approved curriculum. As part of the 2014-2015 Instructional Materials Adoption, schools can choose to implement iCEV’s Family & Consumer Sciences and Business & Marketing courses.

Providing time-saving lesson plans that correlate to Common Core and state standards, Mississippi school districts have access to seven Family & Consumer Sciences courses and 11 Business and Marketing courses. Between the two curricula, school districts can offer wide-ranging coursework that includes early childhood education, nutrition & health, and business and personal finance, to name a few.

“By adding iCEV as a state-approved curriculum, Mississippi is leading the way for quality education and career training initiatives,” said Dusty Moore, iCEV president. “We’re pleased to offer a time-saving and cost-effective curriculum solution that will help educators prepare Mississippi students for college and career.”

iCEV offers in-depth, interactive learning with professional demonstrations to prepare students for postsecondary education and career path. Educators can quickly monitor, track and engage with students through the platform’s interactive lessons. Additionally, iCEV offers students the opportunity to earn nationally recognized industry-backed certifications, such as the Southwest Airlines Professional Communications Certification, as they complete work toward their college and career goals.

For more information, please visit http://icevonline.com/.

About CEV Multimedia
With 30 years of experience, CEV specializes in providing quality Career & Technical Education (CTE) curriculum and education resources for several major subject areas: Agricultural Science and Technology, Family & Consumer Sciences, Business Education, Marketing Education, Trade and Industrial Education and Career Exploration. CEV received the U.S Chamber of Commerce’s Blue Ribbon Small Business Award in 2012 and has been honored numerous times for its excellence in content creation and exemplary business practices. In 2012, CEV introduced iCEV, an online platform revolutionizing the way CEV produces and delivers educational content. iCEV is the most comprehensive online resource for CTE educators and students. With iCEV’s learning-on-demand capabilities, video clips stream instantly to any device with Internet capabilities. Through iCEV, students can earn industry-backed certifications across multiple areas of CTE that prepare them for college and beyond. For more information, visit http://www.icevonline.com.

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Learning Bird Elects Kecia Ray to its Board of Directors

Noted educator is chair of ISTE board, public school educator in Tennessee

 

MONTREAL, Feb. 26, 2015 — Dr. Kecia Campbell-Ray, executive director of Metropolitan Nashville Public Schools Learning Technology, and president of the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE)Board of Directors, has been elected to the Learning BirdBoard of Directors. The announcement was made today by Henry Ryan, CEO of Learning Bird.

 

In her full-time position with Metropolitan Nashville Public Schools in Hermitage, Tenn., Dr. Ray oversees planning and administration of the district’s virtual school, blending learning, online professional development and instructional technology integration. In June 2013, she took the helm of the ISTE board.

 

Dr. Ray taught in one of the first 21st-century classrooms in Tennessee, and participated in the state’s first distance learning network. Her passion for technology, combined with her desire to increase student engagement, led her to conduct research in assessing technology literacy while she was an assistant professor at Middle Tennessee State University.

 

Her work is widely published and has set the stage for progressive gains in the use of technology in education with every position she has held. Dr. Ray has been honored on numerous occasions, including being awarded the ISTE lifetime achievement “Making IT Happen Award” in 2013, named one of “20 to Watch” by the National School Board Association, and singled out as one of the top 10 EdTech leaders by Tech & Learning magazine in 2014.

 

“We are thrilled to have Dr. Ray as an integral member on Learning Bird’s Board of Directors,” Ryan said. “She is a true trailblazer and an industry leader in how to re-imagine today’s classrooms and the best ways to integrate technology into them. As a key player in guiding the future of Learning Bird, we are honored to know she will be sharing her love of education, vast experience, and unparalleled passion as we continue to progress.”

 

According to Dr. Ray, she was drawn to Learning Bird when she saw how the program aligns teacher-made lessons with the way each child learns. “Because of my work in online and blended learning—as well as flexible learning environments—I was immediately fascinated with Learning Bird and its potential to help students succeed through its unique method of differentiation,” Dr. Ray said. “The program also gives back to teachers, which is a wonderful plus in today’s teaching environments. I’m really happy to be a part of Learning Bird, and I’m excited to participate in its growth. Its impact on 21st-century education is going to be incredible to watch.”

 

Learning Bird is a cloud-based differentiated learning application that crowd-sources digital lessons made by real teachers and aligns them to their local curriculum, grade level and books in order to match them to students based on their needs. This makes it easier for students to access a personalized range of perspectives that meet their local curriculum standards. Teachers are rewarded financially when the lessons they share help kids learn.

 

For more information about Learning Bird, visit www.learningbird.com.

 

About Learning Bird |www.learningbird.com

Learning Bird is an innovative online learning tool for K-12 student success, powered by multiple perspectives. Its proprietary learning algorithm matches digital lessons from teachers to the local curriculum, textbooks and personalized recommendations for each student. Learning Bird’s new cross-curriculum alignment engine allows students grades K-12 to access a wider range of lesson perspectives in order to find that “a-ha” moment. When a lesson helps students understand, Learning Bird’s algorithm learns more about how they learn and also shares revenue directly with the teachers who added the lesson.

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FROM FUNDS FOR LEARNING

,John Harrington, CEO of Funds For Learning  the nation’s leading E-rate consulting firm, issued this response:
“Access to affordable, high-speed Internet is essential in today’s society. Funds For Learning is a longtime advocate of policies that promote broadband Internet access in our nation’s communities – specifically via the federal E-rate funding program – and we believe that today’s action by the FCC to approve net neutrality will further this lofty and important goal.
 
We value Chairman Wheeler’s commitment to cultivating an environment in which broadband services, driven by competition and new technologies, are ubiquitous and cost-effective. While we do not agree with every aspect of the FCC’s new ruling, we see it as a step in the right direction and we applaud the Commission for its action today.”
http://www.funds for learning.com
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Georgia’s Philip Lanoue Named 2015 AASA National Superintendent of the Year
Announcement Made at AASA’s 150th Anniversary Celebration

San Diego, Calif. – Feb. 26, 2015 – Philip Lanoue, superintendent of the Clarke County School District in Athens, Ga., has been named the 2015 AASA National Superintendent of the Year. Today’s announcement came at the National Conference on Education, hosted by AASA, The School Superintendents Association, during the premier event of the organization’s 150th anniversary celebration.

Now in its 28th year, the National Superintendent of the Year program, co-sponsored by AASA, Aramark and VALIC, celebrates the contributions and leadership of public school superintendents.

“To be recognized by your peers is something I honor but more importantly, it’s great recognition for the work being done in our community,” said Lanoue during an interview with AASA last month. “This recognition (as a National Superintendent of the Year finalist) for me is really a recognition for our district, teachers, school leaders, parents, students and all of our community constituencies who have faith in the work we’re doing.”

Under Lanoue’s leadership, the Clarke County School District has been honored as a Title I Distinguished District for being Georgia’s No. 1 large district in closing the achievement gap. The district has received numerous state recognitions as a model technology school district, Georgia’s No. 1 Career Academy and the state’s top award for exceptional Response to Intervention practices.

“As we pay tribute to public education at AASA’s 150th anniversary celebration, it’s an honor to congratulate Superintendent Lanoue as our 2015 National Superintendent of the Year,” said Jeff Gilliam, president, Aramark K-12 Education. “We also congratulate the three other finalists as well as all of our State Superintendents of the Year. In their tireless efforts to provide a quality education for students in their respective communities, the individuals we are recognizing today are champions of children. We are proud to be a founding sponsor of AASA’s National Superintendent of the Year program and support those who enrich and nourish the lives of children each and every day.”

“At a time when our school systems are making tremendous efforts to build successful models of positive learning environments for children, VALIC is honored to be part of this important program as we congratulate Superintendent Lanoue as the 2015 National Superintendent of the Year,” said Glenn Harris, executive vice president, group management and national markets, VALIC. “The demands on our superintendents today have never been greater. As we celebrate AASA’s 150th anniversary, it’s only fitting that we honor our National Superintendent of the Year, our three other finalists and all of the State Superintendents of the Year.”

“The superintendent’s job is one of the most difficult and demanding jobs in America, which is why I am so impressed by the tremendous work being done by school system leaders in public education today,” said Daniel A. Domenech, executive director, AASA. “On behalf of our public school children—no matter what zip code they’re from—it is with great pleasure that our nation congratulates Superintendent Lanoue on our 150th anniversary. We also congratulate our other finalists, Superintendents Elia, Murphy and Pujol, and all of our State Superintendents of the Year. These educators are all winners. We owe all of them a debt of gratitude.”

The other National Superintendent of the Year finalists were:

Members of the 2015 AASA National Superintendent of the Year Award Blue Ribbon Selection Committee included:

  • Rich Bagin, executive director, National School Public Relations Association, Rockville, Md.
  • Wanda Cook-Robinson (former National Superintendent of the Year finalist-2013), chief of staff, Oakland Schools, Waterford, Mich.
  • Jack Dale, superintendent (retired), Fairfax County Public Schools, Falls Church, Va.
  • Tom Gentzel, executive director, National School Boards Association, Alexandria, Va.
  • Patricia Neudecker (past AASA president), education director, MBA in Education Leadership, Milwaukee School of Engineering, Oconomowoc, Wis.
  • Darline Robles, professor, Clinical Education, University of Southern California, Whittier, Calif.

The AASA National Superintendent of the Year program is open to all U.S. superintendents who plan to continue in the profession. The program also honors Canadian and International School superintendents. The applicants were measured against the following criteria:

  • Leadership for learning – creativity in successfully meeting the needs of students in the school system.
  • Communication – strength in both personal and organizational communication.
  • Professionalism – constant improvement of administrative knowledge and skills, while providing professional development opportunities and motivation to others on the education team.
  • Community involvement – active participation in local community activities and an understanding of regional, national and international issues.

A $10,000 college scholarship will be presented in the name of the 2015 AASA National Superintendent of the Year to a student in the high school from which the superintendent graduated, or the school now serving the same area.

For more information about AASA’s National Superintendent of the Year program, contact Paula Dearden, AASA director of awards and scholarships, at pdearden@aasa.org.

Click here to access a list of the AASA 2015 State Superintendents of the Year.

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About Aramark
Aramark (NYSE: ARMK) is in the customer service business across food, facilities and uniforms, wherever people work, learn, recover and play. United by a passion to serve, our more than 270,000 employees deliver experiences that enrich and nourish the lives of millions of people in 22 countries around the world every day. Aramark is recognized among the Most Admired Companies by FORTUNE and the World’s Most Ethical Companies by the Ethisphere Institute. Learn more at www.aramark.com or connect with us on Facebook and Twitter.

About VALIC
For more than half a century, VALIC has served as a leading retirement plan provider for K-12 schools and school districts, as well as for higher education, healthcare, government and other not-for-profit institutions. As of June 30, 2014, VALIC has more than $88 billion in total assets under management and manages plans for nearly 24,000 groups serving nearly 2 million plan participants. VALIC represents The Variable Annuity Life Insurance Company and its subsidiaries, VALIC Financial Advisors, Inc. and VALIC Retirement Services Company. For more information about VALIC, please visit www.VALIC.com.

About AASA
AASA, The School Superintendents Association, founded in 1865, is the professional organization for more than 13,000 educational leaders in the United States and throughout the world. AASA’s mission is to support and develop effective school system leaders who are dedicated to the highest quality public education for all children. For more information, visit www.aasa.org.

 

AASA, Howard University Launch Urban Superintendents Academy
Partnership to Offer Urban Superintendent Preparation, Certification

San Diego, Calif. – Feb. 26, 2015 – In response to the challenges of dramatic demographic shifts, technology explosions and a rapidly transforming job market, AASA, The School Superintendents Association, and Howard University have launched a partnership to bolster the effectiveness of school district leadership in our nation’s urban areas.

The AASA/Howard University Urban Superintendents Academy is a collaboration between these two internationally known and recognized leadership organizations to prepare individuals for certification and success in urban and increasingly diverse suburban settings. The partnership is also designed to expand the pool of underrepresented superintendent groups.

“Through its relevant and rigorous program, the Urban Superintendents Academy prepares a new generation of school superintendents who are committed to all school children actualizing their potential,” said Leslie T. Fenwick, dean, Howard University School of Education.

“This unique partnership between AASA and Howard University provides an exceptional opportunity for those who wish to become leaders in urban school systems,” said Daniel A. Domenech, executive director, AASA. “Combining on site learning experiences, mentors, strong curriculum, affinity groups, an annual conference and ongoing support, the Urban Superintendents Academy is a leader in preparing superintendents.”

Key themes the Academy will provide include:

  • Mentors, who are current and former urban superintendents.
  • A consistent emphasis upon “problems of practice,” enabling the two participating cohorts to investigate together potential solutions for universal and site-specific problems, issues and dilemmas facing urban superintendents today.
  • Engaging coursework options at Howard University.

The Academy will offer prospective and in-service superintendents a revolutionary new approach to ensuring success in urban settings. The program will offer professional development, clinical field experiences and a range of resources to prepare for success for these superintendents.

Today’s announcement was made at AASA’s National Conference on Education, where hundreds of superintendents have convened in San Diego, Calif., to celebrate the kick-off of AASA’s 150th anniversary.

For more information about the AASA/Howard University Urban Superintendents Academy contact Mort Sherman, AASA superintendent-in-residence at msherman@aasa.org or Joe A. Hairston, assistant professor, educational leadership and policy studies, Howard University, School of Education, at joe.hairston@howard.edu. In addition, please visit the website at http://aasa.org/urbansuperintendent.aspx.

For more information about the 2015 National Conference on Education, click here.

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About Howard University
Established in 1867, Howard University is a federally chartered, private, doctoral  university, classified as a high research activity institution. With an enrollment of more than 10,000 students, its undergraduate, graduate, professional and joint degree programs span more than 120 areas of study within 13 schools and college. The Howard University School of Education traces its founding to the University’s establishment and graduated its first class in 1890. Since its inception, the School’s preparation programs have focused on eradicating educational and social disparities.

 

AASA Launches Mid-Term State of the Superintendency Survey  

Alexandria, Va. – Feb. 26, 2015 – Every 10 years, AASA, The School Superintendents Association, publishes theState of the Superintendency, a report offering a definitive look at school district leadership throughout the country. With an expected release date of early 2016, AASA will issue a mid-decade edition, which will focus on the state of women in the superintendency and the overall position of the superintendent.

“This report will be a valuable resource for school leaders, aspiring school leaders, those charged with preparing and supporting school leaders and all others who think and write about American public education,” said Daniel A. Domenech, executive director, AASA.

AASA members are now being asked to respond to a survey and the findings will contribute to the report, which will illustrate how the superintendency has changed over the years and how to best support women aspiring to the superintendency.

Click here for excerpts from the The American School Superintendent 2010 Decennial Study.

For more information, contact Leslie Finnan at lfinnan@aasa.org.

2/25/15

SXSWedu Panel Will Reveal How to Dramatically Transform

K-12 Libraries to Bustling Centers of Learning, Engagement

‘Innovative Library Makerspaces’ session set for March 11 in Austin, TX

 

AUSTIN, Texas, Feb. 25, 2015–Imagine K-12 schools where libraries are no longer places of quiet consumption but rather bustling, active community hubs where learning is project based and collaborative. A session at this year’s SXSWedu Conference and Festival in Austin, Texas will reveal how three educators in different parts of the country helped transform their libraries into nationally recognized, 21st-century learning centers where engagement trumps infrastructure.

The one-hour session, “Schools’ Vortex: Innovative Library Makerspaces,” is scheduled for noon on Wednesday, March 11, the third day of the conference that has earned worldwide acclaim for celebrating innovative action in the future of teaching and learning.

The panelists for the “Innovative Library Makerspaces” session are:

  • Patrice Bryan, service learning teacher; Maplewood Richmond Heights School District,

St. Louis, Mo.

  • Darcy Coffta, upper school librarian; Berwick Academy, South Berwick, Maine.
  • Dottie Smay, media specialist; Shorecrest Preparatory School, St. Petersburg, Fla.

The panelists all have transformed their traditional libraries from quiet reading spaces into unique, innovative centers of learning and action. Bryan, Coffta and Smay will reveal the obstacles they faced and overcame, and share their secrets, best practices and what the makerspace format has done for student learning.

All three panelists have imparted some of their wisdom through their individual entries into the Follett Challenge, an annual contest that highlights and rewards the most innovative K-12 programs that teach 21st-century skills to students in the U.S. and Canada. Bryan’s entry on behalf of her school was a grand-prize winner in the 2013 Follett Challenge.

Britten Follett, director of social media and web content for Follett, will serve as moderator for the panel, which will be held in Rooms 400/402 at the Hilton Austin Downtown, 500 East 4th Street.

The SXSWedu Conference & Festival, set for March 9-12, fosters innovation in learning by hosting a diverse and energetic community of stakeholders across a variety of backgrounds in education. By providing a platform for collaboration, SXSWedu’s mission is to promote creativity and social change.

For more information about the “Schools’ Vortex: Innovative Library Makerspaces” panel, visitschedule.sxswedu.com/events/event_EDUP36519

For more information on the 2015 conference, visit SXSWedu.com.

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Curriculum Associates’ Ready® TNCore Mathematics Selected as Approved Instructional Program for Tennessee Schools

Program for grades K–8 chosen based on its focus, rigor, alignment, coherence, usability, and sensitivity

 

NORTH BILLERICA, Mass., February 25, 2015—Curriculum Associates’ Ready® TNCore Mathematics for grades K–8 was recently selected by the State Textbook and Instructional Materials Quality Commission as an approved instructional program for Tennessee schools. The Commission recommended the program based on its focus, rigor, alignment, coherence, usability, and sensitivity after a rigorous review.

 

According to the Tennessee Department of Education’s website, the reviews of programs recommended by the State Textbook and Instructional Materials Quality Commission for inclusion on the Official List of Textbooks and Instructional Materials were prepared by committees of classroom teachers and other experts (state advisory panels) and approved by the Commission. The reviews were conducted for the two-fold purpose of assisting the Commission in formulating the official list and assisting local adoption committees in selecting the textbook programs which best meet their local needs.

 

“Using a research-based and proven-effective model, Ready TNCore was built true to the details and intent of Tennessee’s mathematics standards,” said Rob Waldron, CEO of Curriculum Associates. “The approval of our program reinforces the impact of Ready TNCore as part of the teaching and learning process in helping to effectively improve student outcomes and achievement across key areas of math.”

 

The Ready TNCore program addresses the emphasis on conceptual understanding through reasoning, modeling, and discussion that explores the structure of mathematics. The student lessons lay a foundation of conceptual understanding of the mathematical principles underlying the skills addressed while also developing students’ procedural fluency.

 

As part of the grades K–2 section of the review, the Commission stated, “Math problems are presented in real-world context and each lesson includes a real-world connection. The Common Core Performance Task is scaffolded and also encourages students to apply what they know.”

 

To learn more about the State Textbook and Instructional Materials Quality Commission’s review and selection process, visit the Tennessee Department of Education’s website at http://www.tn.gov/education/textbooks/index.shtml. To learn more about Ready TNCore for Mathematics, visit http://www.curriculumassociates.com/products/ready-tn-core-mathematics.aspx.

 

About Curriculum Associates

Founded in 1969, privately owned Curriculum Associates, LLC, designs research-based print and online instructional materials, screens and assessments, and data management tools. The company’s products and outstanding customer service provide teachers and administrators with the resources necessary for teaching diverse student populations and fostering learning for all students.

 

 

2/24/15

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
edWeb.net - A professional social network for the education community
edWeb.net and Gryphon House announce Early Learning Book Chats, a new online professional learning community

PRINCETON, NJ, February 24, 2015 – edWeb.net and Gryphon House have partnered to presentEarly Learning Book Chats, a free professional learning community (PLC) that helps educators and caregivers find the tools that they need to bring the joy of learning to young children.

The Early Learning Book Chats community hosts online book chats with award-winning early childhood authors and experts, including Renate Zangl, PhD, and author Abigail Flesch Connors, MEd. Monthly webinars and online discussions provide a wealth of ideas and resources. This blended model of real-time and online connectivity makes it easy and fun for educators to stay connected over time to share ideas, practices, examples, lesson plans, and resources. The community is a growing resource that can be accessed any time, anywhere.

Gryphon House invites all early childhood educators to join a free monthly webinar or “napinar” – early learning PD while your young students sleep! The monthly “napinar” will be presented by award-winning early childhood authors and experts who will provide information, resources, and ideas to support educators as they positively stimulate language, cognitive, social, and emotional development of their young students. Educators receive a CE certificate for attending the live webinars or viewing the recording.

The first webinar, “Building Young Children’s Sounds, Words and Brains: Your Words and Interactions Matter,” was presented by Renate Zangl, PhD. Dr. Zangl is a child language researcherand author of Raising a Talker. Educators are invited to watch the recording here.
“We know educators are strapped for time and resources, which is why we brought the top experts in the early-learning field directly to them with these interactive experiences,” said Jennifer Lewis, General Manager at Gryphon House. “We know teachers love the authors’ best practices combined with the research and theories to back them up.”

Lisa Schmucki, founder and CEO of edWeb.net commented, “Early learning educators love participating in online learning communities! We are delighted to launch this new program with Gryphon House that will feature award-winning authors.”

Educators can join the Early Learning Book Chats community at www.edweb.net/bookchats.

About Gryphon House
Gryphon House is an award-winning publisher of resource books for parents and teachers of children from birth through age eight. Developmentally appropriate and easy to use, Gryphon House books provide parents and teachers with the tools they need to bring the joy of learning to young children. To learn more, or to check out the entire collection, visit www.gryphonhouse.com.

About edWeb.net
edWeb.net is a free professional learning and social network that makes it easy for educators to collaborate, share innovative ideas, and improve teaching and learning. We provide the support and training educators need to advance their own practice, build better schools, and prepare students for life-long learning and career success. Schools and districts lack the time, expertise, and funding to provide the professional development educators need — edWeb.net fills that gap. Learn more atwww.edweb.net or follow us on Twitter @edwebnet.

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SIIA Estimates $8.38 Billion US Market for PreK-12 Educational Software and Digital Content

For Immediate Release:
SIIA Communications Contact: Allison Bostrom, 202.289.7442, abostrom@siia.net
PR Contact: Lauren West, C. Blohm & Associates, 608.216.7300, lauren@cblohm.com

SIIA Estimates $8.38 Billion US Market for PreK-12 Educational Software and Digital Content
Annual report shows steady growth in the education technology sector

WASHINGTON, D.C. (Feb. 24, 2015) – The Education Technology Industry Network (ETIN) of the Software & Information Industry Association (SIIA), the principal trade association for the software and digital content industry, today released its “2014 U.S. Education Technology Industry Market: PreK-12 Report.” The report values the overall PreK-12 non-hardware education technology market at $8.38 billion, compared to last year’s valuation of $7.9 billion.

“We are very happy that our fourth report generated such great responses and participation from within the industry,” said Karen Billings, vice president and managing director of ETIN-SIIA. “The results from this year’s survey also show the steady and encouraging growth in the ed tech industry.”

Data in the report was collected directly from 144 service providers and publishers to show a supply-side view of the market not available through traditional customer data collection techniques. This report contains longitudinal data from the three years of the study and shows key trends within the industry.

Revenues from Online Courses grew 320 percent with several significant companies reporting revenues in this category for the first time. Testing and Assessment ($2.5B) was the largest single category of any market segment.

“The rapid growth of the testing and assessment market will slow, but remain an important area of investment in school districts and states. Digital assessments and interest in personalized learning contribute to this growing market,” said CS4Ed president John Richards, Ph.D., the principal author of the report. “There was a substantial investment in infrastructure. We attribute this to increased hardware in schools from district investment, BYOD and preparation for digital common core assessments.”

Companies wishing to purchase the report can do so by visiting the SIIA Market Survey Report page.

To access the Executive Summary of the report click here.

About ETIN
The Education Technology Industry Network (ETIN) of SIIA serves and represents more than 200 member companies that provide educational software applications, digital content, online learning services and related technologies across the K-20 sector. The Division shapes and supports the industry by providing leadership, advocacy, business development opportunities and critical market information. For more information on ETIN at SIIA, visit siia.net/etin.

About SIIA
SIIA is the leading association representing the software and digital content industries. SIIA represents approximately 800 member companies worldwide that develop software and digital information content. SIIA provides global services in government relations, business development, corporate education and intellectual property protection to the leading companies that are setting the pace for the digital age. For more information, visit www.siia.net.

About CS4Ed
Consulting Services for Education, Inc. (CS4Ed) provides business planning services, market research, product analysis and evaluation, and product development to publishers, technology developers, program managers and educational organizations. CS4Ed’s senior staff combines academic quality with product development experience, and has experience in both K-20 education and the realities of publishing, project management, and research. For more information, visit www.cs4ed.com.

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Follow AASA’s National Conference on Education through Conference Daily Online

Alexandria, Va. – Feb. 23, 2015 – AASA, The School Superintendents Association, will kick off its 150th Anniversary celebration Feb. 26-28, 2015, at the organization’s National Conference on Education, in San Diego, Calif. Reporters, communications officers and education stakeholders can follow conference activities through AASA’s Conference Daily Online.

“Our primary audience consists of the key decision makers in our school districts from coast to coast,” said Jay Goldman, co-editor, Conference Daily Online. “Given the wealth of information that will be shared at our annual National Conference on Education, we needed to provide a platform for conference attendees as well as those unable to join us in order for this information to be shared widely.”

“Providing live coverage of our conference through Conference Daily Online allows us to share coverage of key speakers, award winners, governance activities, superintendents’ blogs, as well as photo and video galleries,” said Gayane Minasyan, co-editor of the digital edition of Conference Daily Online. “By leveraging information and communication technologies, we can provide this great benefit to all AASA members.”

The award-winning, online site will allow AASA members to share their experiences through a conference blog andTwitter feed (#NCE15).

During the first General Session (Thursday, Feb. 26), AASA’s 2015 National Superintendent of the Year will be announced. (VIDEO: View the four finalists.) For the first time, superintendents will be recognized for completing the prestigious National Superintendent Certification program.

See the special 150th anniversary issue of the School Administrator. For more information about AASA’s National Conference on Education, visit www.aasa.org.

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AASA National Superintendent of the Year to be Announced Feb. 26

What:  AASA, The School Superintendents Association, will announce the 2015 National Superintendent of the Year at its 150th anniversary celebration during the National Conference on Education in San Diego, Calif. The National Superintendent of the Year program, co-sponsored by Aramark, VALIC and AASA, now in its 28th year, celebrates the contributions and leadership of public school superintendents.

When:  The announcement will be made Thursday, Feb. 26, 2015, during the Opening General Session from 3:45 – 5:45 p.m. (PST).

Who:    The four finalists for the 2015 AASA National Superintendent of the Year:

Click here to access a list of the AASA 2015 State Superintendents of the Year.

Watch the video: Meet the four finalists for the 2015 AASA National Superintendent of the Year.

Where:  The San Diego Convention Center, 111 West Harbor Drive, San Diego, CA. 92101

More:     To learn more about the 2015 National Conference on Education, visit the conference website.

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For more information about AASA’s National Superintendent of the Year program, contact Paula Dearden, AASA director of awards and scholarships, at pdearden@aasa.org.

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For media assistance, contact James Minichello at 703-774-6953 or jminichello@aasa.org.

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About Aramark
Aramark (NYSE: ARMK) is in the customer service business across food, facilities and uniforms, wherever people work, learn, recover and play. United by a passion to serve, our more than 270,000 employees deliver experiences that enrich and nourish the lives of millions of people in 22 countries around the world every day. Aramark is recognized among the Most Admired Companies by FORTUNE and the World’s Most Ethical Companies by the Ethisphere Institute. Learn more at www.aramark.com or connect with us on Facebook and Twitter.

About VALIC
For more than half a century, VALIC has served as a leading retirement plan provider for K-12 schools and school districts, as well as for higher education, healthcare, government and other not-for-profit institutions. As of June 30, 2014, VALIC has more than $88 billion in total assets under management and manages plans for nearly 24,000 groups serving nearly 2 million plan participants. VALIC represents The Variable Annuity Life Insurance Company and its subsidiaries, VALIC Financial Advisors, Inc. and VALIC Retirement Services Company. For more information about VALIC, please visit www.VALIC.com.

AASA Releases Superintendent Salary Study

Alexandria, Va. – Feb. 24, 2015Two days ahead of the National Conference on Education, where hundreds of school district leaders will convene in San Diego, Feb. 26-28, to celebrate the 150th anniversary of AASA, The School Superintendents Association, the organization released its annual salary study.

The 2014 AASA Superintendents Salary and Benefits Study generated a response from more than 1,700 superintendents, representing all 50 states.

The survey’s key findings included:

  • Base salaries ranged from $36,000 to $315,000, with an average salary of $122,000 and a median salary of $113,000.
  • Respondents are predominately male (79 percent), White (94 percent) and from intermediate-sized districts (300-2,499 students) regardless of their gender.
  • Female respondents were, on average, older than male respondents (53.1 to 51.7 percent respectively)
  • A three-year trend of improving economic conditions continues. Slightly more than half of the respondents (53 percent) reported their districts’ economic conditions as stable. (50 percent in 2013; 45 percent in 2012)

“The responsibilities and political pressures that today’s superintendent face far exceed that of when I was a superintendent,” said Daniel A. Domenech, executive director, AASA. “At AASA, we stand ready to provide our members and all public school cabinet level officials with tools they need to succeed. Our annual salary survey is one example because it contains critical data needed for informed decision making. We are committed to refining this work over time to benefit the leadership of public school districts and the communities they serve.”

The survey revealed a small trend toward longer longevity compared with 2013 results. Over half of respondents described their districts’ economic conditions as stable for the first time; this year, 53 percent said so, compared to 50 percent in 2013 and 45 percent in 2012. Despite this positive change, nearly four in 10 respondents still described their districts’ economic conditions as declining.

To access a copy of the 2014 AASA Superintendents Salary and Benefits Study, click here. For specific questions about the report, contact Leslie Finnan, AASA policy analyst, at lfinnan@aasa.org.

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About AASA
AASA, The School Superintendents Association, founded in 1865, is the professional organization for more than 13,000 educational leaders in the United States and throughout the world. AASA’s mission is to support and develop effective school system leaders who are dedicated to the highest quality public education for all children. For more information, visit www.aasa.org.

 

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Kansas School Districts Switch to Efficient, Integrated System with Skyward

 

2/23/15

Learning.com

Districts Can Now Manage Digital Content with Curriculum Foundry from Learning.com

Now available for implementation, new solution helps districts use digital content to meet instructional goals, facilitate personalized learning and address budget challenges.

Portland, Ore. (Feb. 23, 2015) – As a growing number of school districts are undertaking the daunting task of transitioning to digital content, Learning.com announces that Curriculum Foundry, a solution that helps districts access, organize and share digital resources, is now ready for full-scale district implementation. Through this solution’s comprehensive set of lesson- and unit-development tools, districts can build and share their own curriculum.

To help districts start building curriculum, Curriculum Foundry includes a searchable content repository of vetted open education resources (OER) and other free digital resources covering core K-12 subjects. Curriculum Foundry also features single sign-on, enabling students and teachers to easily access digital content in their repository. Once districts have created their own curriculum using Curriculum Foundry, they can export their content via Thin Common Cartridge to be used in a number of compatible existing learning systems.

“Many districts are eager to use digital content but are challenged with organizing content from various sources into lessons and units that can be easily shared across the district,” said Learning.com CEO Keith Oelrich. “With Curriculum Foundry’s repository of quality digital content and comprehensive toolset, districts can build digital curriculum that can be easily accessed by teachers and students.”

Curriculum Foundry allows districts to add their own digital resources and third-party content to the repository. SAS® Curriculum Pathways® is the first third-party provider, offering interactive tools, resources and apps in all core disciplines for grades K-12 at no cost.

“SAS Curriculum Pathways provides more than 1,250 engaging learning resources that are mapped to state standards,” said Scott McQuiggan, director of SAS Curriculum Pathways. “Curriculum Foundry provides districts with the unique opportunity to create their own digital curriculum using our high-quality content in conjunction with other digital resources.”

Learning.com provides comprehensive professional development and training resources to ensure districts can effectively deploy Curriculum Foundry in all of their schools and classrooms.

Visit Learning.com/tools to learn more about begin implementing Curriculum Foundry in your district.

About Learning.com
Learning.com helps students, teachers, and schools excel in a digital world. Districts equip their students with the technology and 21st century skills needed for success on online assessments, college, and the workforce using Learning.com’s digital literacy curriculum and assessments. Learning.com supports districts as they transition to digital content by providing a repository of OER and free digital resources with tools to build and share custom digital curriculum. Through implementation services and professional development, Learning.com serves educators as they integrate technology and digital content into instruction. Founded in 1999, Learning.com currently partners with more than 2,700 districts and serves 4.9 million students.

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Empowering Girls and Women Through Technology in Education:
Theme of CoSN / UNESCO 2015 International Symposium
 
One of Many Featured Events Surrounding CoSN’s Annual Conference, March 16-19
in Atlanta
Washington, DC (February 23, 2015) – CoSN (Consortium for School Networking) today announced exciting plans for the 2015 International Symposium, March 16 in Atlanta, which will focus on “Leveraging Technology in Education to Empower Girls and Women.”
Conducted in partnership with UNESCO and the National Coalition of Women in IT’s (NCWIT’s) K-12 Alliance, the event will convene global education leaders for an important day-long discussion on the role of technology in schools to advance learning outcomes for young women. HP is the lead sponsor of the event.
The 2015 International Symposium will seek to address questions such as:
  • How can new technologies provide an attractive and affordable means to improve the educational opportunities of girls and women in underserved communities?
  • Can education technologies be used to attract girls and women into computing and IT fields?
  • How can we attract more women into education technology leadership positions, and what are the current barriers that keep us from gender equality in this sector?
The Symposium will feature global experts, “TED-like” presentations and moderated discussions. Speakers include:
  • Sam Pitroda, Former Chair of the Knowledge Commission in India, Chair of the Advisory Board of the ITU Mpowering Initiative, India
  • Dr. Dorothy Okello, Senior Lecturer, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the College of Engineering, Design, Art and Technology – Makerere University, Kampala, Uganda
  • Dr. Nancy Hafkin, Former Chief of Research, Women and Development Program, the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) in Addis Ababa
  • Dr. Carolina Belalcázar, Project Officer, Education Sector, UNESCO
  • Ashley Olafsen, Student, Hopkinton High School, USA
  • Barbara Ericson, Director of Computing Outreach and Senior Research Scientist, Institute for Computing Education, Georgia Institute of Technology, USA
Also, hear from key leaders from the Agysta Foundation (India), Learning Links (India), BotBall, Bootstrap, Girls Thinking Global and others. The focus will be on promising solutions that strengthen formal, non-formal and informal learning environments around the world. For more information on the Symposium, please visit: cosnconference.org/international-symposium.
CoSN’s 2015 Annual Conference – “Enabling Your Digital Leap” – will immediately follow the Symposium in Atlanta, March 16-19.
CoSN this week also launched its conference mobile app to allow attendees to navigate and follow the event and receive real-time information on the go. The app is available for download at: http://app.core-apps.com/cosn2015.
Here is a glance at additional pre- and post-CoSN 2015 activities:
Workshops. These half day workshops will allow attendees to interact with front-line educators and come away with in-depth tools, tips and lessons learned on major issues facing education technology leaders:
  • Monday, March, March 16, 8:00 am – 12:00 pm: “Education Data and Student Privacy – The Trust Imperative”
  • Monday, March 16, 9:00 am – 12:00 pm: “Leadership for Mobile Learning”
  • Monday, March 16, 1:00 pm – 4:00 pm: “Defining a Pilot Project Using Disciplined Entrepreneurship”
  • Monday, March 16, 1:00 pm – 4:00 pm: “Smart Education Networks by Design” (SEND)
  • Thursday, March 19, 9:00 am – 12:00 pm: “Grant Writing Workshop: Funding EdTech Dreams”
  • Learn more
CETL™ Certification Immersion Couse & Summit. CoSN is offering a two-day facilitated preparatory session, where leaders will learn about each of the Framework elements from experienced instructors. Also, for the first time, CoSN will hold its first annual CETL™ Summit, allowing ambassadors of the program to connect with other CETL™ holders. Learn more
Exclusive Learning Tours. Conference attendees can join CoSN for a Martin Luther King Jr. National Historic Site Tour on March 15 or for an exclusive school site visit to Henry County Schools on March 19.Learn more
Advocacy Dinner & Auction. Attendees can further support K-12 opportunities and resources at CoSN’s “Monumental Impact! Advocacy Dinner & Auction” on March 17 at the historic Fox Theatre. Learn more
In addition, CoSN is convening its state chapters for the Annual State Chapter Leaders Meeting on March 15. The meeting is a professional development opportunity for state chapter leaders to enhance their leadership skills and improve advocacy efforts made by their chapter. Click here to learn more.
To register for the conference, please visit: cosnconference.org/attend/registration.
Interested media are invited to attend CoSN 2015 at no cost. To register, please contact Michael Kaplun at michaelkaplun@cosn.org
For more information, please visit cosnconference.org or follow #CoSN15 on Twitter.
About CoSN
CoSN is the premier professional association for school system technology leaders. The mission of CoSN is to empower educational leaders to leverage technology to realize engaging learning environments. Visitcosn.org or call 866-267-08747 to find out more about CoSN’s focus areas, annual conference and events, advocacy and policy, membership and the CETL certification exam.
Learn about CoSN’s 2015 Annual Conference in Atlanta, March 16-19, at: cosnconference.org.

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AASA Launches New Website Redesign

Alexandria, Va. – Feb. 23, 2015AASA, The School Superintendents Association, the nation’s premier organization representing the voice of public school leadership, announced a new website redesign today. The redesign includes new information architecture, social media integration and visual design aimed at enabling school system leaders to have easy access to AASA news and messaging.

“The superintendent’s job has increasingly become one of the hardest jobs in America,” said Daniel A. Domenech, executive director, AASA. “In order for our members to best serve the children of their respective communities and set the pace for the way they learn, it is critical that we provide a user-friendly online hub so audiences have simple access to content they need. We are very pleased with the design of our new website.”

“Redesigning a website with more than 4,000 web pages is a lot like launching any new site. You have upgrade, redesign, development, testing and finally the roll out to the public; it’s a team effort,” said Gayane Minasyan, AASA online technologies director. “Our new site has been designed to expedite and simplify navigation, user experience, social media integration, member engagement, accessibility on mobile devices and more. We greatly appreciate the feedback received from our member superintendents at different focus groups and research studies.”

Key features of the website include:

  • Easy Navigation
  • Responsive Web Design, which provides an optimal viewing experience on different mobile devices
  • Social Media Integration, which allows superintendents to engage and network with colleagues
  • Syndication of the latest news and upcoming events

This announcement comes on the eve of the kick-off of AASA’s 150th anniversary celebration at its National Conference on Education, Feb. 26-28, 2015, in San Diego, Calif. Educators can follow the activities and conversations through AASA’s Conference Daily Online.

AASA’s website redesign was developed by the Fairfax, Va.-based American Technology Services. The company was recently ranked fourth on the Washington Business Journal’s list of Top 24 Visual Arts and Design Firms.

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About AASA
AASA, The School Superintendents Association, founded in 1865, is the professional organization for more than 13,000 educational leaders in the United States and throughout the world. AASA’s mission is to support and develop effective school system leaders who are dedicated to the highest quality public education for all children. For more information, visit www.aasa.org.

 

2/20/15

Survey Reveals Two-Thirds of Schools Are Using Digital Resources to Boost Student Performance

Digital Content is Empowering Educators to Provide Differentiated Instruction Tailored to Individual Students

 

CHICAGO, Feb. 19, 2015 – Nearly two-thirds of U.S. and Canadian K-12 school districts are executing digital content plans aimed at helping students succeed in and out of the classroom, according to a recent survey conducted by cloud-based differentiated learning application Learning Bird.

 

The survey results reveal 65 percent of school districts are transitioning to digital learning environments that align digital content with curricula while also providing teachers with professional development opportunities.

 

Details of the survey (illustrated in the accompanying infographic) indicate that the digital content purchased by districts is empowering educators to provide differentiated instruction tailored to individual students while simultaneously saving districts time and money by replacing, supplementing, or enriching traditional classroom resources, such as textbooks.

 

“Ensuring that digital content is available when and where students need it is the key to improving academic outcomes,” said Henry Ryan, CEO, Learning Bird. “The one-size-fits-all education model is rapidly being replaced by the transition to digital learning environments tailored to individual student needs.”

 

While the survey concludes that nearly two-thirds of schools encourage their own teachers to create digital content so students are exposed to multiple perspectives and specialized content, a handful of districts are extending the virtual classroom even farther by actively seeking out digital content created by educators outside their districts.

 

“Providing a student in need of individual attention in one district with resources from the best and brightest teachers in other districts is a logical next step in the digital transition,” Ryan said. “The classroom of the future recognizes no borders and must be able to instantly connect innovative teachers with students who need them most. Every student has the right to instruction that suits them best.”

 

Learning Bird crowd-sources teacher-generated digital lessons aligned with local curricula to deliver on-demand content tailored to individual student needs.

 

About Learning Bird | www.learningbird.com

Learning Bird is an innovative online learning tool for K-12 student success, powered by multiple perspectives. Its proprietary learning algorithm matches digital lessons from teachers to the local curriculum, textbooks and personalized recommendations for each student. Learning Bird’s new cross-curriculum alignment engine allows students grades K-12 to access a wider range of lesson perspectives in order to find that “a-ha” moment. When a lesson helps students understand, Learning Bird’s algorithm learns more about how they learn and also shares revenue directly with the teachers who added the lesson.

 

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Mimio Launches Spring Webinar Series on Using Its Tools to Enhance Interactive Learning Experiences

Hosted by Educators for Educators, Professional Development Webinar and On-Demand Series Helps Teachers Create Active Engagement Instruction

Cambridge, MA– Feb. 18, 2015 – Mimio, developer of the MimioClassroomTM family of interactive teaching technologies and software, recently announced its live and on-demand third annual professional development webinar series designed to help educators make optimal use of its interactive learning tools. Teachers who are experts with Mimio’s collaborative technologies will host the spring 2015 webinars. The live 30-minute sessions are offered on multiple dates to accommodate educator’s busy schedules. Each will then be made available for on-demand viewing at the conclusion of each webinar series.

“Our common-sense solutions give today’s classroom teachers a stress-free way to infuse the learning day with technology-empowered learning,” said Travis Rink, Mimio training manager. “Our presenters are seasoned professionals that understand the demands of day-to-day instruction and are passionate about sharing their experiences so that others can create improved interactive learning experiences.”

The spring 2015 series includes the following sessions:

Getting More from Your Lesson with Mimio

Effective lesson design encourages student engagement, interactivity, and collaboration and facilitates assessment. Teachers attending this webinar will learn new ways to enhance their existing lessons, or ones found on mimioconnect.com, using Mimio technology. Scheduled for February 26 and March 26 at 4:30 p.m. ET, these webinars will be hosted by Lindy George, instructional technology specialist at Collier County Public Schools in Naples, Fla. She will show attendees a multitude of ways to use Mimio products through mobile devices currently in their classrooms to make lessons more interactive, engaging and collaborative.

MimioConnect’s PLN: Join Our Flagship Community

The vibrant online community – MimioConnect – is a dynamic, informative, and fun personal and professional-learning network (PLN) that brings together educators who share an interest in making the most of classroom technology. On March 10 and April 23 at 4:30 p.m. ET, award-winning high school social studies teacher Paul Gigliotti, located in Cleveland, Ohio, will share how to use the MimioStudioTM classroom software to access and download thousands of teacher-created, yet easily customizable, interactive lessons across nearly every subject area. Attendees will learn how current members of MimioConnect are collaborating with other educators around the world to discuss and share best practices and interactive lessons.

Classroom Collaboration with Mimio

Students must learn collaboration skills to be successful in school and in their lives. In this webinar, Charli Mullen, a third grade teacher at Fredericksburg (Texas) Elementary School, will provide tips and suggestions for encouraging collaboration via the many features of the MimioStudioTM software and the MimioMobileTM app for Apple and Android mobile devices. The webinar, scheduled for April 7 at 4:30 p.m. ET, will also introduce attendees to some of the new collaboration lessons and activities that are available at no charge on mimioconnect.com.

To register for these live webinars or to start an on-demand session, visit http://www.mimio.com/en-NA/Events/Tradeshows-Events.aspx or http://www.mimio.com/en-NA/Training/Webinar.aspx.

About Mimio

Mimio is a global leader in interactive teaching technologies that offer a better way to learn and an empowering way to teach. A portfolio company of Skyview Capital, Mimio creates award-winning, innovative, and affordable hardware and software that increase teacher effectiveness and student engagement in K-12 classrooms. For more information, visit www.mimio.com. Follow Mimio on Twitter @MimioTechnology and “Like” us on our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/Mimio.Technology.

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Leading Mathematics Experts Join Curriculum Associates’ Team of Ready® Authors

Industry-leading scholars and authors Dr. Mark Ellis and Dr. Gladis Kersaint to further enhance comprehensive mathematics program

 

NORTH BILLERICA, Mass., February 19, 2015—Industry-leading scholars and authors in mathematics education, Dr. Mark Ellis and Dr. Gladis Kersaint, recently joined Curriculum Associates’ team of Ready® authors. Ellis and Kersaint will use their wealth of research, knowledge, and expertise to further enhance Ready® Mathematics by ensuring the validity and sound instructional design of the comprehensive instruction and practice program.

 

“Ready Mathematics uses a research-based, proven-effective, gradual-release method to ensure student mastery of the new standards,” said Rob Waldron, CEO of Curriculum Associates. “Schools have already seen significant increases in outcomes as a result of using the program. With the expertise and guidance of our new authors, both Ready and i-Ready® will continue to be enhanced and expanded upon to further meet—and exceed—the needs of students and teachers.”

 

Ready Mathematics provides students in grades K–8 with the rigorous instruction and practice needed to prepare them to be college- and career-ready and meet the higher expectations of the new standards in a highly supportive way. The program helps address the emphasis on conceptual understanding through reasoning, modeling, and discussion that explores the structure of mathematics, while also developing students’ procedural fluency. Both authors will also consult on the continued development and improvement of the K–12 i-Ready Diagnostic & Instruction program. The new authors will be instrumental in further developing an already robust student- and teacher-focused content.

 

Dr. Mark Ellis, a National Board Certified Teacher and currently a professor of education at California State University at Fullerton, where he directs the Mathematics and Science Teacher Initiative, is a highly regarded scholar, author, and teacher of K–12 mathematics education. Ellis, who also recently completed a three-year term as a member of the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM) Board of Directors and Executive Committee, is best known for his work supporting educators with research-based strategies that promote deeper understanding of mathematics and increase motivation and success.

 

Dr. Gladis Kersaint, who is currently completing her three-year term as a member of NCTM’s Board of Directors and Executive Committee, is a professor of mathematics at the University of South Florida and a respected scholar in mathematics education. Kersaint has published books, chapters, and journal articles on factors that influence mathematics teacher education and effective teaching, mathematics teaching and learning of at-risk students as well as the use of technology in teaching and learning.

 

To learn more about Ready® Mathematics, visit www.readycommoncore.com.

 

About Curriculum Associates

Founded in 1969, privately owned Curriculum Associates, LLC, designs research-based print and online instructional materials, screens and assessments, and data management tools. The company’s products and outstanding customer service provide teachers and administrators with the resources necessary for teaching diverse student populations and fostering learning for all students.

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“Advancing a Jobs-Driven Economy” through Innovative Business and

Higher Education Partnerships

New call-to-action book from STEMConnector® includes chapter on

community college governance penned by ACCT President

 

Washington, D.C. Feb. 19, 2015: Advancing a Jobs-Driven Economy, a book released today in Phoenix, Arizona and Washington, D.C. by STEMconnector®, focuses on the employer-driven partnerships demanded by 21st century STEM education and workforce development.  Amid recent disruption in higher education, the Association of Community College Trustees (ACCT) joins 62 education, business, and non-profit thought leaders who share proven models that support the necessary STEM education and workforce development revolution.

 

NASDAQ will highlight the book for 15 minutes today in Times Square and showcase the publication across the nation.

 

Call to Action

As a member of the STEM Higher Education Council, ACCT welcomed the chance to contribute to Advancing a Jobs-Driven Economy.  “Community and technical colleges have played a significant role in helping Americans find work during the economic recovery,” said ACCT President and CEO J. Noah Brown, who authored a chapter on the role of community college governing boards in advancing a jobs-driven economy.

 

“Our call to action is to everyone concerned about our ability to create and sustain career opportunities and develop relevant job skills for millions of students to meet employer needs, and the time to act is now,” stated Rob Denson, chair of STEMconnector®’s Higher Education Council and president of Des Moines Area Community College.

 

“Closing the large and growing skills gap in the U.S. will provide Americans with innumerable job opportunities, and employers with the talent they so desperately need to have sustained success,” said Gregory W. Cappelli, chief executive officer, Apollo Education Group.

 

Leadership Required

“Businesses know what they need in order to be competitive,” said John R. McKernan, president, U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation. “The only way to ensure that we have the workforce to enhance America’s long-term competitiveness is to have partnerships and collaborations between business and our educational institutions. What is needed now is bold leadership and transformational change.”

 

 

Collaboration is Critical

“Let us close the achievement gap and get business to help create pipeline programs from high school through graduate school,” emphasized Dr. Martha Kanter, former Under Secretary of Education. “To supply the needs, community colleges and universities must join with business and government to rethink, redesign, provide relevant educational programs and services, and build sustainable relationships.”

 

Dr. Freeman Hrabowksi, president, University of Maryland, Baltimore County underscored the importance of cross-sector collaboration stating, “We need the collaboration. And the stronger the collaboration, the stronger our society and economy will be.”

 

Advancing A Jobs-Driven Economy provides the framework to build new relationships with businesses, governments, and foundations to find opportunities for collaboration in building the next generation of STEM professionals,” said Dr. Mitzi Montoya, vice president and university dean of entrepreneurship and innovation at Arizona State University.

 

Complementing Advancing a Jobs–Driven Economy, the Virtual Community of Practice provides an online platform, allowing our network to continue advancing the dialogues, programs, policies, and partnerships that are critical to an effective STEM education–to–employment system that is emerging in real time. STEMconnector encourages colleges and business to share their effective STEM Higher Education-Industry partnership stories online at book.STEMconnector.org/SHEC.

 

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About ACCT

The Association of Community College Trustees (ACCT) is a non-profit educational organization of governing boards, representing more than 6,500 elected and appointed trustees who govern over 1,200 community, technical, and junior colleges in the United States and beyond.  For more information, go to www.acct.org.  Follow ACCT on Twitter @CCTrustees.

 

About STEMconnector®

STEMconnector® is a consortium of companies, associations, societies, policy organizations, government entities, universities and academic institutions concerned with STEM education and the future of human capital. With several products and services, STEMconnector® is both a resource and a service, designed to link “all things STEM.” STEMconnector®’s network includes organizations at the global, national, state and local levels. STEMconnector® focuses on the STEM workforce and jobs, with a particular emphasis on diversity and women. Our work spans the entire pipeline (Kindergarten to Jobs) and how STEM education experiences translate into careers.

 

About the STEMconnector® STEM Higher Education Council

STEMconnector®’s STEM Higher Education Council (SHEC) is a leadership forum of public and private colleges intently focused on STEM education and careers. SHEC envisions being the national catalyst for meeting the education and training needs of the global STEM workforce and educating the scientists, technologists, and innovators needed for a vibrant economy.

Books will be available on Amazon.com and in bookstores nationwide.

 

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Filament Games Makes a Splash in Classrooms with Backyard Engineers

Game that teaches physical science and engineering concepts becomes latest learning game title available on the Filament Learning Store in February release.

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We’re excited for the launch of Backyard Engineers, as it marks the first in a series of fun and engaging physical science learning titles to be released this year.

MADISON, Wis. (PRWEB) February 19, 2015

Filament Games, award-winning developer of educational games and curriculum, today announced the launch of physical science learning game Backyard Engineers. Designed to align with Benchmarks for Science Literacy, Next Generation Science Standards and Common Core, Backyard Engineers is the first physical science game to be officially released by the developer.

The game challenges players to create the ultimate catapult so they can win a water balloon fight with neighborhood kids. Different mechanical elements of the catapult can be customized by students, manipulating movement, accuracy, range, and damage. Each level of the game is a unique puzzle that challenges students to find the fastest and most efficient way to soak their neighbors.

Backyard Engineers comes with a teacher dashboard for measuring student success and an integrated, standards-based curriculum for educators to use that extends their students’ learning experience. The curriculum includes hands-on activities, labs, challenging end-of-lesson activities and two standards-based assessments that give teachers the tools needed to gauge student understanding and progress.

“We’re excited for the launch of Backyard Engineers, as it marks the first in a series of fun and engaging physical science learning titles to be released this year,” White said.

The game launches on the Filament Learning Store on February 18, 2015, and both educator and student accounts will be priced at $5.99 per account. For more information on the game, visithttp://www.FilamentGames.com.

About Filament Games

Filament Games is a production studio that develops engaging teaching and learning games. The company’s games combine best practices in commercial game development with key concepts from the learning sciences, sparking inspiration through exploration and discovery. Filament Games works with teachers, parents and students to engineer authentic gameplay mechanics that assist educators with meeting Next Generation Science Standards, Common Core requirements, and specific learning objectives. For more information, visithttp://www.FilamentGames.com.

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ASCD Joins the Learning First Alliance

 

ASCD Executive Director Judy Seltz to serve on Alliance’s Board of Directors as LFA works to advancepublic education

 

Washington, D.C. – February  19, 2015 – The Learning First Alliance (LFA), a partnership of leading education organizations representing more than 10 million parents, educators and policymakers, welcomesASCD as its newest member organization. Through this partnership, Judy Seltz, executive director of ASCD, will join LFAs Board of Directors as the Alliance continues its work for the advancement of public education.

 

“ASCDs dedication to excellence in learning, teaching and leading aligns with – and supports – the mission and ongoing work of LFA and our member organizations as a whole,” said Cheryl S. Williams, executive director of the Learning First Alliance. “Through this partnership, and with the expertise of Judy Seltz as a board member, ASCD will be instrumental in helping the Alliance promote the ongoing successes of our nations public schools.”

 

Founded in 1943, ASCD (formerly the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development) is a global community dedicated to excellence in learning, teaching, and leading. Comprising 125,000 members—superintendents, principals, teachers, and advocates from more than 138 countries—the ASCD community also includes 56 affiliate organizations. ASCD’s innovative solutions promote the success of each child.

 

Judy Seltz was appointed executive director of ASCD in June 2014. She formerly served ASCD as Chief Officer of Constituent Services and Deputy Executive Director.  In that capacity she directed the association’s work with its affiliates and other constituent groups in the United States and across the globe, on public policy, governance, and the whole child.
Prior to that role, Seltz served as associate executive director for planning and communications at AASA: The School Superintendents Association. She also worked with International Schools Services in Princeton, N.J., where she supported American international schools overseas, coordinating and directing strategic planning, professional development, and school board training. In the mid-1990s, she served as an ASCD regional director, working with various constituent groups.

Additionally, Seltz spent eight years on the school board of Alexandria City (VA) Public Schools as a member and chair. She also served as the managing editor of Education of the Handicapped Law Report and The Special Educator.

Seltz earned her bachelor’s degree from Brandeis University, her Master of Education from Harvard University Graduate School of Education, and her J.D. from George Mason University School of Law.

 

To learn more about ASCD, visit www.ascd.org. To learn more about the LFA, visit www.learningfirst.org.

 

About The Learning First Alliance

The Learning First Alliance is a partnership of leading education organizations with more than 10 million members dedicated to improving student learning in America’s public schools. Alliance members include: the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education, AASA: The School Superintendents Association,  American Federation of Teachers, American School Counselor Association, ASCD, International Society for Technology in Education, Learning Forward (formerly National Staff Development Council), National Association of Elementary School Principals, National Association of Secondary School Principals, National Education Association, National PTA, National School Boards Association, National School Public Relations Association, and Phi Delta Kappa International. The Alliance maintains www.learningfirst.org, a website that features whats working in public schools and districts across the country.

 

 

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Webinar scheduled for Thursday, February 26th, at 11:00 AM EST (10:00 AM CST)Leveraging Technology to Level the Playing FieldThe first five years is the most critical of a child’s life, when children’s brains become wired to navigate the deep waters of life.

Forty percent (40%) of children in the U.S., before the age of 5, spend most of their weekdays at a daycare center. A 2007 survey by the National Institute of Child Health Development deemed the majority of daycare operations to be “fair” or “poor.” Only 10% provided high-quality care, according to the report, providing a safe and stimulating environment for children to learn.

For those parents whose toddlers have access to a reputable daycare, or are able to be looked after at home, or by relatives, the primary concern is safety, and then the child’s contentment. Strong academics during preschool seem to be reserved only for those who can afford $15,000 a year for a high quality daycare or private preschool. If you ever wondered why 90% of college freshmen come from the middle and upper class, just look at the knowledge and ability of each five year old when he/she enters school, the ratio is very much same. Only 10% of children from low-income families have enough skills to succeed until college!

Technology now is at the stage where every family that can afford a smart phone can afford a virtual preschool program for their children. Virtual preschool can prepare children, stimulate their interests and open their eyes to many opportunities for growth and learning. If a four year old entering the school doesn’t know that five (5) is bigger than three (3), what is the likelihood that he or she will learn algebra well and score 800 on his/her SAT exam?

Attend the VINCI Virtual School webinar, and join us to discuss the best curriculum and processes to flip that ratio. Every child deserves a chance to make it big in life!

Webinar scheduled for Thursday, February 26th, at 11:00 AM EST (10:00 AM CST)

2/18/15

Califone VoiceSaver Amplifier Clearly Delivers

Upgraded Personal PA provides instructors comfort and flexibility while teaching

As school districts increasingly integrate audio technology to support modern classrooms and Common Core assessments, Califone International LLC, the leading manufacturer of audio technology and sound presentation solutions for schools, industry, institutions and professional use, introduces its upgraded Bluetooth-enabled  VoiceSaver™. The personal amplifier provides teachers with clarity while delivering lessons, and now features a wireless headset for hands-free flexibility.

 

Designed to assist soft-spoken presenters and combat vocal fatigue, the VoiceSaver features:

  • Enough power to amplify a voice for use in mid-sized classrooms and tour groups of up to 25 people;
  • Dedicated Bluetooth headset for complete hands-free flexibility and movement about the classroom up to 20 feet away from the receiver;
  • Lightweight frame that can free-stand on a table or desktop;
  • 6-8 hours of battery life and can still be used while batteries are recharging;
  • One-year warranty for school use.

Speaking to a classroom of 20 or more students for eight hours a day, five days a week can put a strain on educator’s voices,” said Tim Ridgway, vice president of marketing for Califone. “Their voice is a critical resource for delivering Common Core instruction. The VoiceSaver provides clear, vibrant amplification that places no additional strain on a teacher’s vocal cords.”

The PA283 is part of a growing line of Califone voice amplification products including headphones and headsets designed to deliver and assist with Common Core instruction.

Califone was founded in 1947 and continues to be a leader in the design, development and manufacturing of audiovisual and supplemental curriculum products for use in education. The company’s products enable educators to incorporate rich audiovisual resources into lessons that help students build speaking and listening skills, critical to the English Language Arts portion of the Common Core State Standards. Califone offers a complete line of audio solutions, wireless systems and multimedia products for small, medium and large presentation needs, and serves millions of educators and students in the PreK through higher education school environments.

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The New York Times and CIG Education Group Collaborate on New Education Initiative
‘NYT EDUcation’ Will Deliver Courses from Pre-College through Continuing and Professional Education


NEW YORK (Feb. 18, 2015) – The New York Times and CIG Education Group have come together to launch NYT EDUcation, a new education initiative. NYT EDUcation marries The New York Times’s premier content and award-winning journalism to the educational expertise of CIG Education Group, a leader in the development of branded academic institutions.

NYT EDUcation will provide innovative courses and programs covering a wide array of subjects, including communications and media, which reflect the authoritative content and intellectual breadth of The New York Times. Courses will be offered on a wide variety of topics, ranging from pre-college level to higher education, continuing education and executive education by incorporating the skills, knowledge and experience of The New York Times.

CIG Education Group will build NYT EDUcation by leveraging a team of proven institution builders who have been pivotal in the development of Sotheby’s Institute of Art, today’s foremost leader in graduate-level study of art and its international markets.

“This is an important milestone in The New York Times Company’s brand extension strategy. NYT EDUcation provides our readers and other like-minded individuals in the U.S. and across the globe an opportunity to learn across a wide range of topics on which The Times has world-class expertise,” said Michael Greenspon, General Manager News Services & International, The New York Times. “We are proud to be working with CIG Education Group who have a strong track record in building corporate-branded education programs, and our relationship will highlight the history, depth and breadth of The New York Times.”

“We’re connecting students to an innovative and relevant curriculum that has, at its heart, the content, creativity and wide-ranging knowledge of one of the greatest media companies in the world,” said Michael Chung, CEO of CIG Education Group, COO of Cambridge Information Group. “We will focus on curricula that will be developed and taught by some of the finest practitioners in their respective fields while maintaining The New York Times’s highest level of quality standards. We believe that by bringing this extraordinary resource into a formal educational context we are creating a new model and a major milestone in the development of 21st century education.”

NYT EDUcation is in the process of assembling a world-class management and curriculum development team.  Planning of courses and programs will begin shortly and the first offerings will be available in fall 2015.

About The New York Times Company
The New York Times Company (NYSE:NYT) is a global media organization dedicated to enhancing society by creating, collecting and distributing high-quality news and information.  The company includes The New York Times, International New York Times, NYTimes.com, INYT.com and related properties.  It is known globally for excellence in its journalism, and innovation in its print and digital storytelling and its business model.  Follow news about the company at @NYTimesComm.

About CIG Education Group
CIG Education Group (CEG) is a division of Cambridge Information Group (CIG) (www.cig.com), a family-owned global investment firm with a focus on information services, education and technology. With Sotheby’s Institute of Art, Bach to Rock and now NYT EDUcation in its portfolio, CEG continually seeks to invest in and build unique educational models founded on academic rigor and real world practice that provide access to exciting careers. CIG, its parent company, has a long and successful track record of investing in and building businesses for the long term and includes ProQuest and Navtech among its holdings. CIG’s family of companies employs more than 2,000 people in 26 countries.

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Mac to School announces Kym Humay as Midwest regional director of educational partnerships

SANTA CLARA, Calif. (Feb. 18, 2015) –Mac to School, a leading provider of certified Apple technology to the K-12 marketplace is excited to announce the addition of education industry veteran, Kym Humay, as its Midwest regional director of educational partnerships.

Humay has spent her entire career within the education industry, spending a number of years as a classroom teacher before moving in to educational sales.  She has a long history of developing strong, meaningful relationships with school and district decision makers at companies like Educational Resources, The Common Core Institute, Lexia Learning Systems and most recently, Scientific Learning.

Throughout her tenure in education, Humay’s work has been recognized within the industry; having won numerous awards, including the CEO Award for Strategic Growth & Development and vendor award for Mobile presenters & interactive whiteboards.

Humay graduated with a degree in Early Childhood Education from the College of DuPage in Glen Ellyn, IL, as well as studying Speech Communications with an emphasis on Public Relations and Organizational Communications at Southern Illinois University in Carbondale, IL.

“Education is so important to the entire team at Mac to School, and putting the best possible team together to support the schools and districts we work with is paramount,” said Robert Baker, the co-founder and chief marketing officer of Mac to School. “We are extremely pleased to welcome Kym Humay to our team; her in-depth knowledge of education and the challenges decision makers face will be invaluable to our customers.”

In her new role with Mac to School, Humay will be responsible for continuing to build relationships with educators across the Midwest, and supporting school and district decision makers that are looking for a lower cost option to putting high quality technology in the hands of their students.

“My passion lies within education.  I have had the best of both worlds during my career in education; in the classroom as a former teacher and the various roles I have held since leaving teaching Mac to School’s mission of providing affordable options to education leadership is near and dear to my heart,“ said Humay. “I am very much looking forward to sharing in this mission; as it will directly impact student success, and at the end of the day, isn’t that what we are here for?”

Humay is a member of the Illinois Association of School Superintendents (IASA), Illinois Principals Association (IPA) and the Illinois Computing Educators Association (ICE).  In addition, she is also affiliated with the National Association of Professional Women and Education Management Professionals.

To learn more about Mac to School and the Apple products currently in stock, visit www.mactoschool.com

About Mac to School:

Mac to School buys, sells and recertifies all types of Apple computers and equipment. We serve the public and private education market, working with small schools up to large districts throughout all 50 states. Our mission is to deliver the best value to our customers while providing the highest level of customer service. Our team of Apple Certified Technicians employs customized tools to generate detailed audits and provide quality refurbishment.

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Announcing: Analytics Dashboard to Help Schools Measure and Improve Parent Engagement

Santa Barbara, Calif. (Feb. 18, 2015) 
Each year, schools invest tremendous amounts of time, energy and resources into parental involvement initiatives. It’s clear administrators and educators understand the importance of engaged parents, but driving and measuring results from those investments has been a perennial challenge – until now. ParentSquare, a simple and secure communication platform designed to reach and engage every parent, announces the launch of a new analytics dashboard designed to help administrators see, track and enhance parental engagement.

The dashboard displays a school’s parental involvement data using intuitive graphs, helping administrators take well-informed steps in nurturing parent and community engagement. Split between a “user dashboard” and “message dashboard,” the platform shows statistics on messages sent and the number of users engaged throughout the academic year. School officials can easily export reports to meet and exceed district, state and federal requirements.

“Metrics enable us to see which messages are resonating with parents and community members,” said Demian Barnett, principal at Peabody Charter School in Santa Barbara, California. “This is a huge step forward for school-home communication because we now have data to measure and drive parent involvement.”

The ParentSquare analytics dashboard gives administrators access to: 

  • Reach: Schools can see how many users receive messages via email, text or app notification and ensure 100 percent deliverability.
  • Engagement: Administrators can view user engagement with the messages that they send home.
  • Participation: Officials can track how parents are interacting with messages by either appreciating, commenting or signing up to bring items.

“For the first time ever, school leaders can leverage data to make sense out of parental  involvement and take well-informed steps to improve upon it over time,” Anu Vaid, founder and CEO of ParentSquare. “The analytics dashboard is a significant step forward for school-home communication. We’re eliminating the guess-work and uncertainty educators and administrators too often experience when communicating with parents.”

The analytics dashboard allows administrators and teachers to view per-user data on parent reach and aggregate data on participation and engagement, as well as compare engagement across different grade levels within the school. This helps teachers and administrators make well-informed decisions based on metrics.

To learn more about the analytics dashboard or to schedule a brief demo of the technology, visit www.parentsquare.com/dashboard.

About ParentSquare  
ParentSquare is a simple, collaborative platform for school-home communication that facilitates parental engagement in children’s education. Designed specifically to help preK-12 educators, ParentSquare reaches and engages every parent with automated email, text and app alerts, language translation, and 24/7 access. Powerful metrics on parent engagement help school administrators take well-informed steps to improving parental involvement. Learn more at www.parentsquare.com. Join the discussion on Twitter (@ParentSquare) and Facebook (www.facebook.com/Parentsquare).

 

2/17/15

Pitsco Education wants your lesson plans

Elementary contest to award shopping sprees at pitsco.com

PITTSBURG, KS (February 16, 2015) – How valuable are your lesson plans? At Pitsco Education, they could be worth $100 in Pitsco products.

If you can write a lesson plan, then our Elementary Lesson Plan Contest is for you. Submit an original lesson plan – applicable for Grades K-5 – using one of the approved Pitsco products, and you could win one or more $100 shopping sprees at www.pitsco.com.

“We want to encourage elementary teachers to use STEM products in their classrooms,” explained Pitsco Elementary Curriculum Specialist Tammy Pankey. “We hope this contest will help build a repository of elementary lessons that will get students excited and engaged in learning.”

Entries will be accepted from February 16, 2015 through midnight April 30, 2015. There’s no limit to the number of times you can enter and win, so visitwww.pitsco.com/LessonPlanContest today to get all the details you need to start writing – and winning!

Highlights/Multimedia:

Pitsco Education is the leading provider of age-appropriate, student-centered K-12 STEM learning solutions. Our standards-based curriculum, products, equipment, and materials promote student success through positive and challenging learning experiences, and our hands-on solutions teach core concepts and career skills in science, technology, engineering, and math.

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Generation Z and Mobile Learning: itslearning Shares Infographic Insights

 

Boston – Feb. 17, 2015 —itslearning (www.itslearning.net), maker of the personalized learning management platform of the same name, has gathered statistics from sources like the “Harvard Gazette,” Ambient Insight and PBS regarding the effect of mobile devices on the education of Generation Z, the cohort of U.S. students now starting to fill middle school classrooms.

 

The findings, summarized in an infographic titled “Generation Z: Growing and Learning with Mobile,” (http://www.itslearning.net/gen-z-growing-and-learning-with-mobile-infographic) reveal that incorporating middle school students’ mobile habits into classroom instruction can have a profoundly positive influence on their learning.

 

The findings highlighted in the newly released infographic include the following:

 

–      The small screens of mobile phones allow dyslexic students to read faster without sacrificing comprehension.

 

–      Studies show standardized test scores are higher in courses where students use mobile devices than in offline classrooms.

 

–      In 2013, 35 percent of teachers used a tablet or e-reader in class, up from 20 percent just one earlier.

 

–      Of the middle school students using mobile devices, 78 percent use the devices for checking grades, 69 percent use them for taking notes and 64 percent for writing papers.

 

“First, we had digital natives and now we have mobile natives,” said Gayle Nixon, chief marketing officer of itslearning. “Educators are having to quickly adapt to the technological needs and mores of each new generation of learners, but our research shows that it does indeed make much more sense to harness that technological power than to resist it. It’s one of the reasons that itslearning recently created a mobile app for iPhones and Android phones. We’re dedicated to helping educators keep up with the changes in student needs.”

 

Designed specifically for the K-12 sector, itslearning is a leading, cloud-based learning management system (LMS) that enables teachers to more effectively engage today’s “digitally wired” students anytime, anywhere and on any device. The platform enables student voice and choice, facilitating collaboration and self-reflection through blogs, individualized learning plans, communities and ePortfolios. The platform also fosters student content creation and peer analysis, extending the role of the student far beyond that of a traditional “consumer.”

 

More than 4 million educators, students, and parents worldwide currently use itslearning. The media-rich learning platform’s user-friendly interface and seamless integration with existing school and district systems give teachers an easy way to share instructional resources, assignments and activities, and assessments with students and parents via personalized dashboards. At the same time, students have the power to decide how they learn as the solution automatically adapts to support learning styles that offer the best opportunities for success. A proprietary ”standards mastery and recommendation engine” facilitates remediation, acceleration and review by automating the recommendation of resources and activities based upon standards mastery assessments. The recommendations are also tailored specifically to the individual learning styles of each student – regardless of age, ability level, interests, learning pace, or special requirements.

 

About itslearning

Designed for teachers and how they want to teach, itslearning is a cloud-based learning platform used by millions of teachers, students, administration staff and parents around the world. It can be found at all levels of education, from primary schools to universities, helping teachers make education more inspiring and valuable for today’s students. At itslearning, we pride ourselves on understanding the needs of education. More than 20 percent of our employees have worked as teachers, and we can often be found in the classroom, learning from teachers. We provide a full range of services, from simple training sessions to full-scale implementation projects. Established in 1999, itslearning is headquartered in Bergen, Norway, and has offices in multiple locations around the world. For more information, visithttp://www.itslearning.net.

 


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