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edWeb.net and myON Announce Professional Learning Community

‘Building a Community of Readers’ will provide valuable resources focused on literacy

(PRINCETON, NJ) May 24, 2017 ­­— edWeb.net and myON today announced a combined effort to provide educators with robust professional learning opportunities to transform literacy for all pre-K–12 students. myON will sponsor the professional learning community “Building a Community of Readers on edWeb.net as a forum for professional learning and collaboration focused on all aspects of literacy. Educators will be able to collaborate online across the country and around the world to leverage information and learn best practices from their peers to build innovative approaches to literacy for the classroom

 

The myON mission—giving every child unlimited access to books to engage them in learning—supports 21st-century literacy, and educators can rely on myON to provide an innovative approach to personalizing literacy for all students. The commitment and investment that has been made over the past six years is now being realized, as myON is having measurable impacts on students’ learning worldwide.

 

“While we know that literacy is the foundation of learning, we also know that educators are tasked with a deeply challenging job of engaging their students in literacy and learning,” said Todd Brekhus, the president of myON. “We are thrilled to be working with edWeb.net to support all educators in navigating the literacy landscape and believe this is one of the most effective ways to support teacher professional learning, which in turn supports student achievement.”

 

Educators are invited to join “Building a Community of Readers” to receive invitations to free edWebinars, earn CE certificates, participate in online discussions, and get exclusive access to free online resources focused on literacy

 

Steven Anderson, Digital Learning and Relationship Evangelist; and Shaelynn Farnsworth, Education Services Consultant for AEA 267 in Iowa, presented the community’s first edWebinar on April 17th. In “Redesigning Literacy Instruction in a Student-Centered Classroom,” Anderson and Farnsworth explained a simplified version of balanced literacy and helped attendees reimagine reading and writing in the classroom through an ed tech redesign. More than 400 educators from around the country and the world participated in the live presentation and chat, engaging in an ongoing dialogue with Anderson, Farnsworth, and fellow attendees, and adding additional insights and resources for all to share.

The community’s second edWebinar, “‘Fake News’ and the Case for Media Literacy Across All Grades,” took place on April 16 and attracted 445 live attendees, making it the site’s most popular offering of the week.

Lisa Schmucki, founder and CEO of edWeb.net, commented, “Helping students develop literacy and critical thinking skills is more important than ever, so I am especially happy we can work together with myON to do all we can to support teachers—and all educators—in this endeavor. The feedback we get for hosting these events is so inspirational.”

 

About myON

myON is an award-winning personalized literacy environment that incorporates a state-of-the art learning platform, enhanced digital reading content including five daily news articles written for students, The Lexile® Framework for Reading, cutting-edge literacy tools, and embedded metrics to monitor activity and growth. Robust professional development ensures that educators have the support needed to effectively implement myON. Together, these components power a Literacy Ecosystem that is built upon five pillars: personalization, unparalleled content, unlimited access, collaboration and success.

About edWeb.net
edWeb.net is a free professional learning and social network that is a highly engaged community of connected educators who are on the leading edge of innovation in education. edWeb members are teachers, faculty, administrators, and librarians at pre-K–12 and post-secondary institutions who are working together to provide peer leadership, training, and support. Educators are creating their own communities on edWeb, and also participating in edWeb’s professional learning communities and edWebinar programs. edWeb’s growing ecosystem is a collaboration space where educators and thought leaders in the education industry gather and share ideas that can improve learning for all students. Learn more at EdWeb.net or follow edWeb.net on Twitter @edwebnet.

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Discovery Education and the Drug Enforcement Administration Name Madison, CT Teens Grand Prize $10,000 Winners of Operation Prevention Video Challenge PSA Communicating the Dangers of Opioid Misuse

 

–Madison, CT teens also received the People’s Choice Award and earned an exclusive tour of DEA Training in Quantico, Virginia–

 

Washington, D.C. and Silver Spring, MD (May 24, 2017) – Three Madison, CT high school students have a grand-prize winning video message for their teen peers about how not to let your life get “swallowed up by an opioid addiction.” The United States Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), DEA Educational Foundation andDiscovery Education, the leading provider of digital content and professional development for K-12 classrooms, awarded Kyle Citrin, Clay Knibbs, and Carter Soboleski of Daniel Hand High School (Madison Public School District) the $10,000 Operation Prevention Video Challenge grand prize. The students also received the most votes during the People’s Choice award voting period, earning them a trip for an exclusive behind-the-scenes tour of DEA training at the DEA’s Training Academy in Quantico, Virginia, for their video entitled “The Cork Board.”

 

For the first time, the Operation Prevention Video Challenge asked teenagers across the nation to submit 30-60 second public service video announcements to educate their peers about the current opioid epidemic. Kyle, Clay and Carter’s video focused on a powerful message of “being together and having fun” with those you cherish the most — family and friends —  instead of being pulled away by opioids. The PSA warns that opioids “dictate your actions,” and urged: “don’t let your life get swallowed up by an opioid addiction.  Get help.”

 

“We must change the culture surrounding the use of dangerous drugs, and that requires all hands-on deck.  The best messengers of change for young adults are their peers.  The fine work created by Kyle, Clay, and Carter carries a powerful message – that opioid abuse hurts more than just the user,” said DEA Acting Administrator Chuck Rosenberg. “Congratulations to them; I’m grateful they lent their voice and creativity to this important cause.”

 

The winning video was chosen by a panel of judges at Discovery Education, the DEA and DEA Educational Foundation. The other winners include:

 

  • Second Place: Monet Massac of Brooklyn Friends School in Brooklyn, New York will receive $5,000 for the PSA video “The Twins.”
  • Third Place: Nate Trillo of Midlothian Heritage High School (Midlothian

School District) of Midlothian, TX will receive $1,000 for his video “Real Life.”

 

The scholarships awarded to the first, second and third place winners were provided courtesy of the DEA Educational Foundation.

 

The videos of the winners can all be viewed at: https://www.operationprevention.com/video-challenge.  The challenge is part of a joint nationwide education initiative titled Operation Prevention that educates students about the science behind addiction and its impact on the brain and body. Available at no cost, the initiative’s resources help promote lifesaving discussions in the home and classroom.

 

“The top 10 finalists should be very proud and congratulated for their incredible efforts and impressive videos,” said T.J. Salutari, Principal at Daniel Hand High School. “Students taking such a proactive part in communicating the dangers associated with opioid abuse is inspiring. I am especially proud of our students and their teacher as they have positively represented our entire school community.”

   

“Congratulations to the winners for creating these powerful videos and a big thank you to their schools and their families for supporting this inaugural project,” said Kevin Hartmann, President of the DEA Educational Foundation. “Our hope is that these amazing teenagers will continue to help us spread the important message about the dangers of opioid abuse.”

 

For more information, visit: https://www.operationprevention.com/

 

About the Drug Enforcement Administration

The mission of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) is to enforce the controlled substances laws and regulations of the United States and bring to the criminal and civil justice system of the United States, or any other competent jurisdiction, those organizations and principal members of organizations, involved in the growing, manufacture, or distribution of controlled substances appearing in or destined for illicit traffic in the United States; and to recommend and support non-enforcement programs aimed at reducing the availability of illicit controlled substances on the domestic and international markets.

 

About the DEA Educational Foundation

Established in 2001, the DEA Educational Foundation is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization dedicated to preventing drug abuse. The foundation supports the DEA through advocacy, outreach, and educational programs.

 

About Discovery Education
Discovery Education is the global leader in standards-based digital content and professional development for K-12, transforming teaching and learning with award-winning digital textbooks, multimedia content that supports the implementation of Common Core, professional development, assessment tools, and the largest professional learning community of its kind. Serving 4.5 million educators and over 50 million students, Discovery Education’s services are in half of U.S. classrooms, 50 percent of all primary schools the UK, and more than 50 countries. Discovery Education partners with districts, states and like-minded organizations to captivate students, empower teachers, and transform classrooms with customized solutions that increase academic achievement. Discovery Education is powered by Discovery Communications (NASDAQ: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK), the number one nonfiction media company in the world. Explore the future of education atwww.discoveryeducation.com.

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Teachers are embracing the future of digital education. As they work with a range of online tools, educators need a suite of ed tech resources that work together to make learning accessible and flexible.

In April, Schoology announced increased integration with Google Drive. To build upon its usability, Schoology today announces its integration with Microsoft Office 365. With this integration, students and teachers can easily use Office 365 while working inside of the Schoology LMS to manage grades, assignments and student submissions.

For the full release, please click here.

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Robert-Leslie Publishing Expands Award-Winning Early Childhood Curriculum by Adding Family Engagement Program ‘Dilly’s Tree House™’
Dilly’s Tree House helps teachers extend quality pre-K from school to home with inquiry-based learning adventures for families
CHICAGO (May 24, 2017) — Decades of scientific research confirm that a comprehensive plan for the education of young children must include extended family, school and community. This holistic approach is key to a child’s well-being and a lifetime of success. To support educators’ efforts to involve families in children’s learning, Robert-Leslie Publishing offers Dilly’s Tree House™ Family Engagement Programa preschool learning series that includes adventure stories and character posters to build language and literacy skills, while fostering critical thinking and social emotional development. Additionally, the activities encourage hands-on and outdoor learning experiences in science, math, art and music — all based on the acclaimed InvestiGator Club® Inquiry-Based Pre-K Learning System.
For the full news release, visit here.

 


NEWS ABOUT FLIPPED LEARNING

Here are the latest developments at the Flipped Learning Global Initiative:
Spanish Language Flipped Learning Certification Program Launched
Flipped Learning 3.0 World Tour Kicks Off at ASCD
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Expanding Minds and Stretching Language Skills with Arabic Yoga

Qatar Foundation International Names Winners of #ArabicYoga Contest and Releases Arabic Yoga Lesson Plan

 May 22nd, 2017, WASHINGTON, DC – And the winner is…. Kalimah Programs for Arabic Language, Culture, and Arts, in Rockville, MD! Having won almost 50% of the over 1000 votes cast, Qatar Foundation International (QFI) declared Kalimah Programs the winner of its #ArabicYoga contest with the grand prize of $500 for their additional classroom resources.

Arabic Yoga began as a class that utilizes yoga poses to teach Arabic vocabulary in the first Arabic dual-immersion program in Texas, Arabic Immersion Magnet School (AIMS) – a QFI sponsored program. Combined with a larger health and wellness initiative, yoga was a unique and fitting addition to the immersion experience, creating a fun and effective way to teach the language.

Across the U.S., students and teachers uploaded photos and videos of themselves to Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, describing their favorite word in Arabic with a yoga pose.

“We have been using yoga as part of our Arabic Immersion Weekend Program to engage kids in active, meaningful language learning. We came up with pose names in Arabic that help kids remember words like table, chair, tree, frog, lion, star, child, and others. For the contest, the kids were excited to come up with a new pose that involves group work. The word “عربي” (‘arabi) represents both our passion for learning Arabic and our fascination with how the different letters join (and not join) to form words and convey meaning. Just like the letters, we work together to make Arabic come to life and integrate it into our everyday lives. We plan to use the money as scholarships for families with limited income to help them access programs and opportunities for learning Arabic.” said Layali Eshqaidef, Founder and President of Kalimah Programs

QFI also released a lesson plan on Arabic Yoga in Arabic and in English on their Open Education Resource (OER) site, Al-Masdar. The lesson plan, written by Eden Bass of the Arabic Immersion Magnet School, Houston, TX, serves as a guide for a 45-minute Arabic yoga class and is meant to be used by an Arabic teacher with students ranging in age from 4 to 7 years old. These thematic yoga lessons can be adapted for any classroom and age group or language ability. It includes an introduction activity, yoga sequence, moment of relaxation, and a closing activity. The lesson plan is available for use and adaptation in English and Arabic here.

Maggie Mitchell Salem, QFI’s Executive Director said: “QFI is proud to support new and creative methods in Arabic pedagogy. Combining physical education with language learning is essential to keep students engaged in the classroom! Innovatively incorporating language in early education is a seamless way to integrate a critical 21st Century skill.”

Arabic is spoken by over 400 million people worldwide, is the fastest-growing second language in the United States, and has helped US students pursue careers in business, journalism, diplomacy, national security, and much more. QFI sees language as a fabric to connect cultures, and has partnered with 24 K-12 public and public charter schools across the country, allowing American students to gain a foothold in the Arabic language from a young age.

Qatar Foundation International (QFI), LLC, is a U.S.-based member of Qatar Foundation (QF). QFI operates as both a grant-making organization, and a convener of thought leaders on issues related to global and international education, open education and education technologies as they intersect with the three core QFI programmatic areas: Arabic language and Arab culture, STE{A}M (STEM plus the Arts), and Youth Engagement.

QFI inspires meaningful connections to the Arab world by creating a global community of diverse learners and educators and connecting them through effective and collaborative learning environments —inside and outside the classroom.

Through our activities, QFI is committed to providing K-12 students in Qatar, the Americas, and the United Kingdom (UK) with the intellectual, communicative, and cultural competencies that will enable them to be engaged global citizens.

Students from the U.S. and Qatar Earn a Trip of a Lifetime to Disneyland for the National Service Learning Conference, Dare to Dream!

Students from the U.S. and Qatar Earn a Trip of a Lifetime to Disneyland for the National Service Learning Conference, Dare to Dream!


Selected Students to Join Qatar Foundation Internationals Cultural Exchange Trip to the National Service Learning Conference in California to Present their own Service Projects

LOS ANGELES /QATAR – March 21, 2017: Qatar Foundation International (QFI) has partnered with the National Youth Leadership Council (NYLC) to bring together seven students from Qatar and four from Portland, Los Angeles and Tucson to participate in the 28th annual National Service Learning Conference (NSLC): Dare to Dream!, held at Disneyland in Anaheim, California, from March 22-24, 2017.The students were selected through QFI’s and NYLC’s service learning exchange program, YALLAH Commit to Action (YALLAH C2A). Over the course of four months, YALLAH C2A trained, mentored, and supported an international cohort of young change-makers, to collaborate and complete service projects that work towards achieving the United Nations (UN) Sustainable Development Goals (SDG).

Students presented their community service projects at a live virtual showcase that took place in Doha, Qatar on the 26th of February. The top projects were selected to present at the National Service Learning Conference. Projects presented to judges included, ‘Saving the Planet, One Step at a Time’; ‘Quality Education: Youth Engagement’; ‘Hope through Hygiene among Homeless in Portland’; ‘Gender Inequality in Sports’; ‘Saving the Turtles of the Gulf’; and ‘Service for Workers’.

Lina Draidia, a student at Al Bayan Secondary Independent School for Girls, Doha, and one of the students selected to join the exchange, said: “Being part of C2A has been a life-changing experience. It has given me an amazing opportunity to make a difference to the lives of other young people. Our project focuses on the lack of awareness around the availability of quality education in marginalized communities. I think that allowing the youth to develop these projects is a marvelous idea because we are the same age as the people we are trying to help and we have so much in common with them.”

“We are very proud of our students and their commitment to addressing global issues through service-learning and our ongoing partnership with NYLC,” said Maggie Mitchell Salem, Executive Director of QFI. “These exchanges offer students and educators a chance to reach beyond their classroom and their community to develop cross-cultural and critical thinking skills that are essential in an increasingly interdependent world.”

During the conference, students will attend workshops to learn more about service-learning and youth empowerment across the globe. Additionally, the 11 students will lead their own workshops for Dare to Dream attendees on their service-learning projects and will also take part in educational and cultural tours of Anaheim and Los Angeles throughout the week, including a luncheon hosted by the Consulate General of the State of Qatar. The conference culminates with a Day of Service, where students and teachers will participate in community service throughout Anaheim, to give back to the host community, connect with nonprofits in the area, and hear from community leaders.

Additionally, QFI supported NYLC to translate the K-12 Service-learning Standards for Quality Practice into Arabic. This valuable material now allows Arabic speakers from around the world to learn about and create their own service-learning projects using tools built specifically for them.

-About Qatar Foundation International

Qatar Foundation International (QFI), LLC, is a U.S.-based member of Qatar Foundation (QF).

QFI operates as both a grant-making organization, and a convener of thought leaders on issues related to global and international education, open education and education technologies as they intersect with the three core QFI programmatic areas: Arabic language and Arab culture, STE{A}M (STEM plus the Arts), and Youth Engagement.QFI inspires meaningful connections to the Arab world by creating a global community of diverse learners and educators and connecting them through effective and collaborative learning environments —inside and outside the classroom.Through our activities, QFI is committed to providing K-12 students in Qatar, the Americas, and the United Kingdom (UK) with the intellectual, communicative, and cultural competencies that will enable them to be engaged global citizens.

Visit www.qfi.org to learn more.

About the National Youth Leadership Council

The National Youth Leadership Council is the premier supporter and advocate for K-12.Service-learning.For more than 30 years, NYLC has transformed classrooms, empowered teachers, and developed student leaders by leading the way in providing high-quality, dynamic service-learning content to school districts, classrooms, and out-of-school youth programs.NYLC accelerates student achievement by strengthening academic, civic, and character outcomes through service-learning. We help tap into the passion, creativity, and ingenuity of all young people to make real change happen. With online content, customized professional development, tools, resources, and more, NYLC is leading the way to transform community into classroom and inspiring all young people to Serve. Learn. Change the world®.

Visit www.nylc.org to learn more.

 


 

TEXAS ASCD, USAA AND DISCOVERY EDUCATION TEAM UP TO LAUNCH
NEW STEM AND FINANCIAL LITERACY EDUCATION PROGRAM
ACROSS SAN ANTONIO PUBLIC SCHOOLS

 

San Antonio, TX (May 17, 2017) – Today, Discovery Education, a leading provider of digital content and professional development in K-12 schools; USAA; and the Texas ASCD, an association for teaching, learning and leading, announced a new multi-year investment to support science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) career development and financial literacy in San Antonio-area middle and high schools. Named STEMvest, this innovative education initiative will reach thousands of educators and students in middle and high schools across area public school districts.

 

Made possible by philanthropic support from USAA, this regional education initiative empowers area educators with the dynamic digital resources and professional development they need to create a culture of STEM teaching and learning in their classrooms. The digital learning environments created by this program will improve the STEM and financial literacy skills of area students, and will prepare them for success beyond graduation. The program is offered at no cost to participating school districts.

 

STEMvest resources available to educators, students and families through this initiative include:

  • STEMinars: Dynamic visual, on-demand online professional development for San Antonio educators that provide a foundational understanding of STEM and highlight program resources.
  • Science Techbook™: An award-winning digital textbook for middle school students in San Antonio that includes hands-on labs, digital explorations, an interactive glossary, and data analysis activities that help teach students to read, write, and think like scientists.
  • Financial Literacy Interactives: Engaging, digital experiences to help teach high school students how to make responsible choices about personal finance. These self-paced activities align to the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS) and are perfect for in-class instruction, self-directed student engagement or at-home learning with the family.
  • STEMCamp: A series of standards-aligned curricula for use as part of summer camps, after-school STEM programs or wherever support is needed. STEMCamp combines hands-on labs, engineering challenges, digital investigations, and more – all designed to immerse kids in the grand challenges of science set forth by the National Academy of Engineering.

 

Educators at Northside Independent School District’s Anson Jones Middle School will participate in Discovery Education’s STEMFormationmodel, which provides specialized focus and instruction on STEM education and professional development. A comprehensive, three-year system of professional development, STEMformation helps educators strengthen and sustain a culture of STEM at individual school sites and guides educators as they master STEM instructional strategies. Northside educators will also be empowered to create modern digital learning environments with Discovery Education Streaming Plus™, a comprehensive service of standards-aligned digital resources to supplement instruction across all curricular areas and address multiple learning styles.

 

“A great STEM experience can really jumpstart a student’s engagement in learning,” said Deborah Rice, K-12 STEM Specialist, in Judson ISD. “With the new digital resources and professional development I’ll be receiving from Discovery Education through the STEMvest program, I’ll have the tools and know-how I need to create a great STEM learning environment and encourage responsible financial decision-making.”

 

“It’s a powerful combination to deliver STEM and financial programs together,” said Harriet Dominique, USAA senior vice president of corporate responsibility. “Conversations with area administrators and teachers made clear the need for results-driven STEM professional development for teachers and relevant, engaging STEM and financial literacy content for students to help them better prepare for future careers. USAA is thrilled to support this effort for the San Antonio community.”

In addition, the Discovery Education Community will support the educators in STEMvest districts as they transform students’ learning experiences with digital media. A global community of education professionals, the Discovery Education Community connects members across school systems and around the world through social media, virtual conferences, and in-person events, fostering valuable networking, idea sharing, and inspiration.

 

“Texas ASCD is committed to helping our states’ education leaders evolve their professional practice to meet the changing needs of today’s students,” said Dr. Yolanda Rey, Executive Director of Texas ASCD. “This initiative will provide educators across the San Antonio area with proven digital resources and strategies they can immediately integrate into classroom instruction to support the success of all learners.”

 

“Discovery Education is proud to join forces with USAA and Texas ASCD in support of our shared mission to provide San Antonio area students the STEM and financial literacy skills they need to find success in college and career,” said Phillip Mikula, Director – Education Partnerships, Discovery Education. “Together, we are delivering to educators the dynamic digital resources and professional development they need to create immersive learning experiences for all students. We look forward to collaborating closely with the talented teams at both TXASCD and USAA on this outstanding education initiative.”

 

To learn more about STEMvest, please visit www.STEMVestSA.com

 

About USAA

The USAA family of companies provides insurance, banking, investments, retirement products and advice to 12 million current and former members of the U.S. military and their families. Known for its legendary commitment to its members, USAA is consistently recognized for outstanding service, employee well-being and financial strength. USAA membership is open to all who are serving our nation in the U.S. military or have received a discharge type of Honorable – and their eligible family members. Founded in 1922, USAA is headquartered in San Antonio. For more information about USAA, follow us on Facebook or Twitter (@USAA), or visit usaa.com.

 

About Texas ASCD

Founded in 1947, Texas Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development (Texas ASCD) is a non-profit organization committed to improving teaching and learning for the success of all learners. It has a diverse membership of approximately 2,500 superintendents, principals, teachers, curriculum directors, staff developers, students and professors. Texas ASCD is a state affiliate of International ASCD. In the ever-changing world of education, Texas ASCD remains on the cutting edge of educator needs. What remains unchanged, and as vibrant today as it was in its infancy, is the commitment and dedication to lifelong learning for educators. Texas ASCD has 12 regional affiliates, spanning the state. Regional affiliates, the liaison between Texas ASCD and local schools, concentrate on regional policy issues, and offer professional learning to their members. For more information, please visit: www.txascd.org


About Discovery Education

Discovery Education is the global leader in standards-based digital content for K-12, transforming teaching and learning with award-winning digital textbooks, multimedia content, professional development, and the largest professional learning community of its kind. Serving 4.5 million educators and over 50 million students, Discovery Education’s services are in half of U.S. classrooms, 50 percent of all primary schools in the UK, and more than 50 countries. Discovery Education partners with districts, states, and like-minded organizations to captivate students, empower teachers, and transform classrooms with customized solutions that increase academic achievement. Discovery Education is powered by Discovery Communications (NASDAQ: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK), the number one nonfiction media company in the world. Explore the future of education at www.discoveryeducation.com.

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IO Education Expands Leadership Team To Continue Accelerating Growth

Leader in education technology sets bold vision for 2017

ATLANTA – May 18, 2017 – IO Education, a market leader in helping educators use data to improve outcomes, has announced an expansion of its leadership team as the company seeks to build on its strong growth in 2016. As part of this expansion, Eric Masters has joined as Chief Marketing Officer and Robbie Payne has joined as Vice President of Operations. Additionally, Eric Miller, who has been with IO Education for the past two years, has been promoted to vice president of product management.

“IO Education has undergone significant growth over the past few years through key partnerships and acquisitions. These additions to our leadership team will continue to propel IO Education’s growth forward,” said Michael Williamson, chief executive officer of IO Education. “We have ambitious plans for 2017 and view these new hires as an important step forward.”

To read the full release, please click here.

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AHEAD OF RED NOSE DAY, COMIC RELIEF INC. AWARDS CHILDREN FROM SIX SCHOOLS IN GRADES 3-8 GRANTS IN NATIONAL ‘RED NOSE CHALLENGE,’ FOCUSED ON PUTTING IDEAS INTO ACTION FOR CHILDREN LIVING IN POVERTY

 

Two winners will be awarded with a $5,000 Grand Prize to Implement Plan of Action Plus Other Prizes; Special In-School Assembly To be Held On May 18, 2017–

 

–Runner-Up Schools Receive $2,500 Grants and Prizes

 

New York, NY (May 18, 2017).  Recognizing that big change starts with small steps, today, Comic Relief Inc. announced the winners for the Red Nose Challenge, as part of its Red Nose Day in School program. Two grand prize winners were chosen for grades 3-5 and 6-8, based on their creative videos explaining how they plan to make a difference for children living in poverty.  They are receiving $5,000 to implement their plan of action or donate to a charitable organization, as well as a video equipment package for the team leader and individual prize packs for each team member. View videos here.

 

Grand Prize Winners include:

 

Student Team (William McKnight, Anajiah Edwards, Jermaine Edwards, Branniyah Taylor) from Manatee Charter, Manatee Elementary and Samoset Elementary Schools of the School District of Manatee County in Bradenton, FL

Student Team (Rakshita Gorrepati, Elizabeth Ryan, Ansley Cachuela) from Lakeside Middle School of Forsyth County School District in Cumming, GA

 

The Red Nose Day in School program is about educating students on the important issue of child poverty, and empowering and inspiring them to make a difference. The program is just one element of the broader Red Nose Day campaign, which launched in the U.S. in 2015 with a mission to end child poverty. The third annual Red Nose Day in America will take place next week, on May 25, 2017, raising awareness and funds to keep children in need safe, healthy and educated – both here in the U.S. and around the world.  A student team in Grades 3-5 from Bradenton, Florida including William McKnight of Manatee Charter, Anajiah Edwards, and Jermaine Edwards of Manatee Elementary School and Branniyah Taylor of Samoset Elementary School and a student team from Lakeview Middle School in Cumming, GA including Rakshita Gorrepati, Elizabeth Ryan, and Ansley Cachuela, best showcased their idea to make a difference for children living in poverty, as well as one statistic or fact on the issue, and why everyone should care. Even though the winners of the Red Nose Challenge are announced, you can still organize your own fundraiser and donate to the cause – your donation will truly make a big difference for children in need. Find out how your school can get involved and access fundraiser tookits atrednosedayinschool.org

 

Additionally, Comic Relief Inc. announced second place teams and People’s Choice winners, who were voted on by the general public.

 

2nd place schools include:

  • Grades 3-5 Student Team, Homeschooled in Bellevue, WA including Frances “Frankie” Arendale and Mary Jane Arendale
  • Grade 6-8 Student Team from Steelville Middle School in Steelville, MO including Dalton Hutson, Abigale Ireland, Emma Kreitner, Margaret Yeomans

 

People’s Choice winners include:

  • Grade 3-5 Student Team from Nellie F. Bennett Elementary School in Point Pleasant, NJ
  • Including Ryan Acquisto, Lindsey Ludwig, Samuel Hankins, Jordan Davidson
  • Grades 6-8 Student team from Jane Lathrop Stanford Middle School in Palo Alto, CA
  • Including: Boston Abrams, Joshua Yang, Noa Shoval, Kyle Ethan Heller

 

These runners up in grades 3-5 and 6-8 win $2,500 to implement their plan of action or donate to a charitable organization and an iPad for the team leader. People’s Choice Winners in each grade band receive a $250 gift certificate.  All entries were evaluated based on their originality, advocacy, action plan and presentation.

 

The Challenge included a two-part classroom activity engaging students on the issue of poverty by first viewing videos, and/or researching on their own, and participating in group discussion; and second, by engaging with the concept of empathy using role-playing activities. Students work to understand empathy as the ability to step into the shoes of another person, and specifically what life is like for children living in poverty.

 

Comic Relief Inc. worked with Discovery Education to deliver the Red Nose Day in School program and the Red Nose Challenge, leveraging their expertise in reaching students and teachers across the U.S.  For more information, please visit: http://www.rednosedayinschool.org/challenge

 

About Red Nose Day   

Red Nose Day is a fundraising campaign run by the non-profit organization Comic Relief Inc., a registered U.S. 501(c)(3) public charity. Red Nose Day started in the U.K., built on the foundation that the power of entertainment can drive positive change, and has raised over $1 billion globally since the campaign’s founding in 1988. Red Nose Day launched in the U.S. in 2015 with a mission to raise money and awareness to end child poverty, and has raised over $60 million to date for the cause. Red Nose Day 2017 will take place on Thursday, May 25. Money raised goes to the Red Nose Day Fund, which supports programs that keep children in need safe, healthy and educated, both in America and abroad. Beneficiaries include the Boys & Girls Clubs of America; charity: water; Children’s Health Fund; Feeding America; Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance; National Council of La Raza; Save the Children; and The Global Fund. Since launching in the U.S., Red Nose Day has received generous support from millions of Americans, hundreds of celebrities and many outstanding partners, including Walgreens, NBC, Mars, and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

 

About Discovery Education

A leader in educational technology, Discovery Education partners with K-12 districts and like-minded partners to strategically support the shift from print to digital learning environments.  Providing the highest quality digital content (digital textbooks) and professional development, Discovery Education is increasing student achievement for over 50M students and 4.5M teachers worldwide. Learn more:  www.discoveryeducation.com.

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Follett Announces Partnership with Unbound Concepts’ Artifact

Platform Empowers Teachers, Librarians to Work Together to Recommend Best Content

 

MCHENRY, Ill. and BALTIMORE, May 17, 2017 – Folletttoday announced it has entered into a partnership withUnbound Concepts and its flagship platform, Artifact,which helps districts, teachers, librarians and curriculum buyers discover the best content for their students. Artifact catalogs the topics, themes, concepts, educational objectives and literary elements in content — all of which can now be found as enhanced metadata tags withinTitlewave, Follett’s powerful collection development and curriculum support tool.

According to Katie Palencsar, CEO/Founder of Unbound Concepts, the Artifact platform’s metadata tags are pulled from a fixed set of more than 700 terms that describe content, encompassing topics, themes, literary and educational elements.

“Each tag includes descriptive information and a text snippet showing how the concept appears in the text,” Palencsar said. “Artifact supports a common language between teachers and librarians, which empowers stakeholders to work together to recommend the right books for a curriculum, classroom or student. Plus, it allows publishers to highlight, through search and discovery, critical elements in their text to better sell into schools and libraries.”

Nader Qaimari, President for Follett School Solutions, said the partnership is a first step toward developing universal meta-tagging for K-12 instructional content incorporation, and added the use of Artifact in Titlewave will provide educators the opportunity to curate titles and lists based on specific topics, themes and curriculum elements.

“Artifact provides assurance that targeted curriculum elements exist in the texts purchased and assigned to classrooms,” Qaimari said.“Artifact also provides a way to develop collections around a district’s scope and sequence. This partnership will allow us to provide evidence-based curation, meaning when a teacher or librarian assigns a particular text—print or digital— it supports exactly what a student needs and aligns to their instructional objective.”

Each Artifact includes three key items: 1) an artifact type, which is selected from Unbound Concepts’ taxonomy; 2) a rationale, which is written by a teacher and shows how and why the artifact is in the text; and 3) a quotation from the text to provide direct evidence.

Unbound Concepts partners with a variety of book distributors and publishers, including Baker & Taylor, which Follett acquired more than a year ago.

To learn more about Follett, visit www.follettlearning.com. To learn more about Unbound Concepts, visitwww.unboundconcepts.com.

 

About Unbound Concepts | www.unboundconcepts.com

Unbound Concepts is a technology company founded by educators to improve the way teachers, librarians and curriculum buyers discover the content that best serves their students and patrons. Its flagship platform, Artifact Access™, tags publishers’ content using an extensive Artifact taxonomy identifying topics, themes, educational characteristics, literary elements and teaching standards, going far beyond traditional metadata. Artifacts inform and support the discovery of books, and serve as pre-reading tools and post-reading strategies for readers.

 

About Follett’s PreK-12 Business| follettlearning.com
Follett is the largest provider of educational materials and technology solutions to PreK-12 libraries, classrooms, learning centers and school districts in the United States, and a major supplier to educational institutions worldwide. Follett distributes books, reference materials, digital resources, ebooks and audiovisual materials, as well as pre-owned textbooks. Follett also is one of the leading providers of integrated educational technology for the management of physical and digital assets, the tracking, storing and analyzing of academic data, and digital learning environment tools for the classroom focusing on student achievement.

 

About Follett Corporation | follett.com

For more than 140 years, Follett has been a trusted partner to preK-12 schools, colleges and campus stores, taking care of the critical details that make it easier for schools to run, teachers to teach, students to learn and fans to celebrate. A leading provider of education technology, services and physical and digital content, Follett currently works with 70,000 schools and operates more than 1,250 local campus stores and 1,600 virtual stores. With the 2016 acquisition of Baker & Taylor, LLC, Follett’s reach also extends into the public library and global retail markets. Today Follett Corporation is the world’s largest single source of books, entertainment products, digital content and multi-media for libraries, schools and retailers. Follett is a $3.6-billion privately held company headquartered in Westchester, Illinois.

 

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Schoology Unveils Session Details and Keynote Lineup for User Conference
Educators from more than 50 school districts and universities confirmed as speakers


NEW YORK (May 18, 2017) – Schoology, the leader in learning management systems (LMS) for education, announced today the release of session details, keynote speakers and additional sponsors to Schoology NEXT, the company’s fourth annual user conference. Users attending the conference can now customize their schedules for the event to take place July 24-26 at McCormick Place in Chicago.

For the full release, please click here.
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Virtual High School Opens Registration for 2017-18 School Year

 

Boston — May 16, 2017 — Educational experts advocate exposing students to a wide variety of topics to motivate learning and encourage exploration of potential career options. The Virtual High School (VHS Inc.), a non-profit empowering schools with the industry’s best online learning programs, helps educators expand learning opportunities with middle and high school core, Advanced Placement® and elective courses, including an extensive range of STEM options, that enable schools to supplement their own offerings. Registration for in the 2017-18 school year is now open.

 

VHS offers more than 200 courses, including 23 College Board approved Advanced Placement® courses. One of the recent additions is AP® Computer Science Principles, an introductory college-level computer science course designed to appeal to all students in grades 10-12, not just those interested in STEM subjects. The goal of AP® CSP is to promote success across all disciplines in today’s technology-driven society by cultivating logical thinking, problem-solving skills, and creativity in students with diverse backgrounds and interests.

 

In addition to AP® courses, students have the opportunity to take interesting and unique electives such as Business and Personal Law, Psychology of Crime,and Screenwriting Fundamentals. These courses stimulate students’ interests and expose them to possible career options. Elective courses also include an extensive range of STEM options such as Climate Science, Web Design,Engineering Principles, and Business Math.

 

“VHS partners with schools to help resolve curriculum issues due to budget, scheduling and staffing constraints. These issues limit the variety of courses most schools can offer. Our wide range of advanced courses and unique electives helps schools in more than 40 states and 30 countries. With VHS, schools can cost-effectively provide new and exciting learning options for their students,” said Carol Ribeiro, President and CEO of VHS. “When students have choices, they’re much more likely to take ownership of their learning and consider college majors and career paths that may have never occurred to them otherwise. We love helping students succeed both in the classroom and in life.”

 

About The Virtual High School

The Virtual High School (VHS, Inc.) is an online learning pioneer. Since 1996, the nonprofit organization has set the standard for quality online education. VHS provides middle and high school online courses for students and professional development for educators. The organization also meets the unique educational needs of schools through custom course development, individualized course offerings, and support for blended learning initiatives. VHS design and delivery standards are the model used by the National Education Association in their recommended standards for online learning.  The organization has won numerous awards, including the Stockholm Challenge Award for Global Excellence in Information Technology and is a three-time winner of the United States Distance Learning Association’s (USDLA) award for Excellence in Programming and Excellence in Best Practices. For more information, visit www.VHSlearning.org or call (978) 897-1900.

 


CEV Multimedia Partners with Clever to Improve Digital Learning Experience

Leading CTE curriculum provider simplifies student login and secure data integration process 

LUBBOCK, Texas (May 15, 2017) – The expectations students face when entering the workforce are changing and as a result, educators are changing how they teach. With 15 percent of all credits earned by high school graduates coming as part of Career and Technical Education (CTE), educators are looking for ways to improve and streamline students’ experiences with CTE. To ease the use of online CTE curriculum, CEV Multimedia announces a partnership with Clever to crate a more seamless online experience for educators and students.

CEV Multimedia’s online learning platform, iCEV, will connect with Clever to enable educators to easily access CTE curriculum for their students.

To read the full news release, visit here.

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Arizona’s Marana Unified School District Supports Ongoing Digital Transition Through New Partnership With Discovery Education

 

–New Digital Textbooks Support the Creation of Modern Science Learning Environments–

 

Silver Spring, Md. (May, 15, 2017) – Arizona’s Marana Unified School District (MUSD) today announced a new partnership with Discovery Education, the leading provider of digital content and professional development for K-12 classrooms. Through this collaboration, MUSD science educators in grades 3-6 are empowered to support the district’s ongoing transition to dynamic digital classrooms with Discovery Education’s digital textbooks.

 

MUSD’s educators seek to maximize student engagement in collaborative educational settings, utilize current resources, and cultivate a competitive edge for their students by integrating technology and digital content into the school curriculum. The district’s new relationship with Discovery Education provides MUSD’s science educators additional resources with which they will continue these efforts as they support the transition to digital teaching and learning, build a culture of STEM, and create 1:1 learning environments.

Through this new partnership, educators across the school system are integrating theScience Techbook™ digital textbook series into classroom instruction. Discovery Education’s Science Techbooks were developed by a dedicated team of expert science educators with the input of teachers and administrators from around the nation.  The Techbook’s rich, standards-aligned content includes video, audio, text and interactives with hands-on activities, as well as virtual labs that help classroom teachers differentiate instruction and create rich and engaging learning experiences for all students. Techbooks are also a substantially less expensive option per student at nearly half the cost of a traditional textbook, with additional savings derived from a lack of textbook replacement or inventory costs.

The Science Techbook also includes valuable STEM resources. STEM Project Starters encourage students to connect math, technology, and engineering to their understanding of science concepts to produce creative solutions to real world problems. In addition, the STEM In Action resources helps students connect their work to STEM careers, which promotes a clearer understanding of how skills used in school can be applied to jobs “in the real world.”  Embedded formative assessment opportunities that help educators monitor student progress are included in each Techbook, and like all Discovery Education digital textbooks, the Science Techbooks work on any device and can be implemented in any instructional setting.

Embracing a philosophy of three-dimensional learning, Discovery Education’s Science Techbooks help educators integrate digital resources into their classroom practice.  The Model Lessons within the Science Techbooks reflect the interconnectedness of the Science and Engineering Practices (SEPs) Disciplinary Core Ideas (DCI) and Cross-Cutting Concepts (CCC) and illustrate what these mean in practice for educators.

“Marana USD’s talented educators are committed to the personal success of each student,” said Doug Wilson, Superintendent of Marana Unified School District. “Our new partnership with Discovery Education supports the district’s continued digital transition, positions educators to better personalize our learning initiatives, and helps us achieve our goal of inspiring students to learn today and lead tomorrow.”

 

Additionally, the Discovery Education Community will support MUSD’s educators’ efforts to transform students’ learning experiences with digital media. A global community of education professionals, the Discovery Education Community connects members across school systems and around the world through social media, virtual conferences, and in-person events, fostering valuable networking, idea sharing, and inspiration.

 

“Discovery Education is proud to support Marana USD’s efforts to maximize student engagement,” said Sarah Scott, Director of Educational Partnerships at Discovery Education. “Together, we are creating immersive digital learning experiences that ignite students’ interest in science while nurturing the skills needed for success beyond graduation.”

 

For more information about the Discovery Education Techbook series, Discovery Education’s supplemental content services, or other products or services from Discovery Education, visit www.discoveryeducation.com.

 

About Discovery Education

Discovery Education is the global leader in standards-based digital content for K-12, transforming teaching and learning with award-winning digital textbooks, multimedia content, professional development, and the largest professional learning community of its kind. Serving 4.5 million educators and over 50 million students, Discovery Education’s services are in half of U.S. classrooms, 50 percent of all primary schools in the UK, and more than 50 countries. Discovery Education partners with districts, states and like-minded organizations to captivate students, empower teachers, and transform classrooms with customized solutions that increase academic achievement. Discovery Education is powered by Discovery Communications (NASDAQ: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK), the number one nonfiction media company in the world. Explore the future of education at www.discoveryeducation.com.

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New Survey From West Reveals Schools Turn to Social Media, Mobile Apps, Multiple Channels for Effective Parent Engagement

 

Results of national survey to be presented in June 1 webinar, “From Apps to Announcements: Increasing School-Parent Engagement With Communications Technology”

 

SCOTTS VALLEY, Calif., May 16, 2017 — For effective parent engagement, school districts increasingly rely on social media, turn more to mobile apps, and, ultimately, recognize that they must use multiple communications channels. These are the key findings of a national survey conducted by West Corporation to discover how districts are currently using communications technology for parent engagement, to examine perceived effectiveness of various methods, and to learn about districts’ plans for growth. Complete results of the survey will be released in a SchoolMessenger solutions webinar, “From Apps to Announcements: Increasing School-Parent Engagement With Communications Technology,” on June 1 at 11 a.m. Pacific/2 p.m. Eastern.

Hundreds of West’s district-level customers, reflecting the national mix of district sizes and settings, completed the online survey. Respondents included district leadership such as superintendents, technology directors, communications officers, and those with similar titles and roles.

Among the top three findings of the survey is, overall, district use of mobile apps to build parent engagement is increasing. Districts plan a 44 percent increase in the emphasis they put on the use of mobile apps over the next one-to-three years. Yet, in contrast, they expressed concern about the impact on parents and guardians of the proliferation of communications apps from various sources.

In addition, districts believe that for maximum engagement, they must use multiple channels. Broadcast voice notification remains important as a method, likely in part because 45 percent of respondents also report that parent internet access is a significant obstacle to using technology to better engage parents.

Finally, use of social media as a parent engagement channel is very strong now and appears that it will remain so. Districts say they will make social media a top communications technology priority for investment of time and resources over the next one-to-three years. Generally, a majority of respondents perceive two-way communications with parents (such as social media posts with responses) as more effective for engagement than one-way communication.

The webinar, which is open to SchoolMessenger solutions customers and other professionals responsible for school communications, will feature Elisabeth O’Bryon, Ph.D., co-founder and head of research ofFamily Engagement Lab, a nonprofit subsidiary of GreatSchools, Inc., whose mission is to help schools ignite the power of millions of families to support learning, and Frank Catalano, vice president of West’s Education group and the study’s primary author.

Dr. O’Bryon was previously a postdoctoral research associate at the Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence and most recently the director of research and evaluation at GreatSchools, where she assessed the effectiveness of digital information strategies for preK-12 families.

 

“We know that when families engage with school, children succeed,” said Dr. O’Bryon. “Our research shows that parents want to receive information from the school about how their child is doing academically, the key skills they are supposed to learn and strategies for supporting their child’s learning. Unfortunately, 32 percent of parents are less than satisfied with the information communicated by their schools. The good news is that, when used appropriately, the digital communications technologies explored in West’s survey have the potential to help schools meaningfully boost their family engagement efforts.”

 

West’s Catalano added, “Our survey demonstrates that not one size, or one method, fits all for using communications technologies to engage parents. However, with the wide range of communications technologies available today to school districts, selecting what best meet the unique needs of a district’s community can be a multiple-choice answer.”

Participants in the webinar will receive a white paper exploring the survey results in depth.

To register for the June 1 webinar, visit http://bit.ly/Jun2017SMWebinar.

About West (SchoolMessenger Solutions)

West Corporation is the trusted provider of SchoolMessenger solutions. Thousands of schools and other educational institutions in all 50 states and Canada depend on SchoolMessenger products and services. From notifications and websites to custom mobile apps and social media, school leaders have relied on the SchoolMessenger platform since 1999 to engage with their communities in multiple languages and on any device. To learn more about SchoolMessenger products, visitwww.schoolmessenger.com or call 888.527.5225.

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Teens Tackling the Opioid Crisis:

Discovery Education and the Drug Enforcement Administration Announce Finalists in 1st Annual Operation Prevention Video Challenge

 

— The Public Can Vote for People’s Choice Award Winner until May 17, 2017

 

Washington, D.C. and Silver Spring, MD (May 8, 2017) –The United States Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), DEA Educational Foundation and Discovery Education, the leading provider of digital content and professional development for K-12 classrooms, announced today the finalists of the inaugural Operation Prevention Video Challenge—a peer-to-peer platform for communicating messages about the dangers of opioid misuse.

 

The public is invited to watch the ten finalists’ videos at OperationPrevention.com and vote through May 17, 2017 for the People’s Choice winner, who will win a trip for an exclusive behind-the-scenes tour of DEA agent training at the DEA’s Training Academy in Quantico, Virginia. Winning PSAs will also be featured on-air and across DEA’s digital and social media platforms.

 

For the first time, the Operation Prevention Video Challenge asked teenagers across the nation to submit 30-60 second public service video announcements to educate their peers about the current opioid epidemic. The challenge is part of a joint nationwide education initiative titled Operation Prevention that educates students about the science behind addiction and its impact on the brain and body. Available at no cost, the initiative’s resources help promote lifesaving discussions in the home and classroom.

 

“These creative videos and powerful voices are the type of thinking we need to help address the severe and growing opioid epidemic,” said DEA Acting Administrator Chuck Rosenberg. “We must change the culture regarding dangerous drugs, and we must educate folks about the very real risks of opioid abuse and addiction.”

 

In addition to the People’s Choice winner, several other prize winners will be chosen by a panel of judges from Discovery Education and the DEA, as well as community leaders, educators, and communications experts.  The grand prize winner will receive $10,000, the second-place winner will receive $5,000, and the third-place winner will receive $1,000.

 

The Top 10 Finalists Include (in alphabetical order):

  • Kyle Citrin, Clay Knibbs, and Carter Soboleski for “The Cork Board.” Madison, CT. Daniel Hand High School, (Madison Public School District)
  • Nicholas Kilgore for “Bon Appetit.”  Norton, MA.  Norton High School (Norton School District).
  • Monet Massac for “The Twins.” Brooklyn, New York. Brooklyn Friends School.
  • Ayodeji Ogunlana for “More.” Mercedes, TX.  South Texas High School for Health Professionals. (South Texas Independent School District)
  • Shelbea Owen for “Davis Owen.” Marietta, GA.  Marietta High School (Marietta City School District).
  • Katherine Smith for “Let’s End Opioid and Heroin Misuse.” Shreveport, LA. Loyola College Prep School (Harrison School District 1)
  • Jack Thomas for “How.” Flanders, NJ. Mt. Olive High School. (Mt. Olive TWP School District)
  • Melissa Torres for “Story of Your Life.”Tampa, FL.  Leto High School (Hillsborough County Public School District)
  • Nate Trillo for “Real Life.” Midlothian, TX. Midlothian Heritage High School (Midlothian School District)
  • Benjamin Zulcic for “Awareness.” West Valley City, UT.  Granger High School (Granite School District).

 

“It’s inspiring to see our teens across the country get involved and speak directly to their peers about the dangers of opioid abuse,” said Kevin Hartmann, President of the DEA Educational Foundation. “A lot of hard work and passion went into every video. Congratulations to all of the participants on a job well done!”

 

“We proudly join with the DEA to congratulate the teen finalists of the first annual Operation Prevention Video Challenge,” said Lori McFarling, Senior Vice President, Discovery Education. “With the opioid epidemic taking its toll on students nationwide, it’s never been more important to amplify the digital storying skills of these teens to make a difference, and provide powerful classroom resources on theimpacts of prescription opioid misuse.”

 

About the Drug Enforcement Administration

The mission of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) is to enforce the controlled substances laws and regulations of the United States and bring to the criminal and civil justice system of the United States, or any other competent jurisdiction, those organizations and principal members of organizations, involved in the growing, manufacture, or distribution of controlled substances appearing in or destined for illicit traffic in the United States; and to recommend and support non-enforcement programs aimed at reducing the availability of illicit controlled substances on the domestic and international markets.

 

About the DEA Educational Foundation

Established in 2001, the DEA Educational Foundation is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization dedicated to preventing drug abuse. The foundation supports the DEA through advocacy, outreach, and educational programs.

 

About Discovery Education
Discovery Education is the global leader in standards-based digital content and professional development for K-12, transforming teaching and learning with award-winning digital textbooks, multimedia content that supports the implementation of Common Core, professional development, assessment tools, and the largest professional learning community of its kind. Serving 4.5 million educators and over 50 million students, Discovery Education’s services are in half of U.S. classrooms, 50 percent of all primary schools the UK, and more than 50 countries. Discovery Education partners with districts, states and like-minded organizations to captivate students, empower teachers, and transform classrooms with customized solutions that increase academic achievement. Discovery Education is powered by Discovery Communications (NASDAQ: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK), the number one nonfiction media company in the world. Explore the future of education at www.discoveryeducation.com.

 

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Curriculum Associates’ Ready® Mathematics for Grades K–5 Receives Near-Perfect Rating by EdReports.org

Ready Mathematics for grades K–5 is one of only three products in its category to meet all evaluation criteria during independent review

 

NORTH BILLERICA, Mass., May 16, 2017—Curriculum Associates’ Ready Mathematics for grades K–5 received a near-perfect rating by EdReports.org, an independent nonprofit that delivers evidence-based reviews of instructional materials. After an extensive review by expert educators, Ready Mathematics for grades K–5 was one of only three programs in its category to meet all evaluation criteria and was the overall highest scoring program of the three.

 

EdReports.org conducts extensive, third-party reviews to increase the capacity of teachers, administrators, and leaders to seek, identify, and demand the highest-quality instructional materials to improve and deepen student learning. The organization’s review process includes a 3-gateway system in which a “green” rating signifies that the program meets expectations for that given set of criteria. Ready Mathematics for grades K–5 met all criteria at every grade level with a “green” rating and near-perfect high scores across EdReports.org’ three gateways:

  1. Gateway 1: Focus and Coherence looks at how the program addresses the standards and makes connections to previous learning and future learning.
  2. Gateway 2: Rigor and Mathematical Practices looks at the program’s rigor and mathematical practices.
  3. Gateway 3: Usability looks at the program’s design of student materials, resources available to support instruction, and support for teachers.

Ready Mathematics is having tremendous impact in improving instruction and achievement for millions of students nationwide,” said Rob Waldron, CEO of Curriculum Associates. “Educators love its ability to address both grade-level content and individual learning needs. We are pleased to see the experts at EdReports.org recognize the power of Ready Mathematics for grades K–5 with this extremely positive review.”

 

Ready Mathematics is available for grades K–8, although Ready Mathematics for grades K–5 was the only Curriculum Associates’ program evaluated in this review cycle by EdReports.org. Ready Mathematics helps address the emphasis on conceptual understanding through reasoning, modeling, and discussion that explore the structure of mathematics while also developing students’ procedural fluency. The lessons in Ready Mathematics use a research-based, proven-effective, discourse-focused instructional model with a balance of conceptual understanding, procedural fluency, and application to build confidence and mastery of the Mathematics Standards.

 

To learn more about Ready Mathematics, visit www.cainc.com/readymath. To learn more about the EdReports.org results and evaluation, visit www.edreports.org.

 

About Curriculum Associates

Founded in 1969, 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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WEBINAR ALERT from The Virtual High School:

Computer Science Education and Certificate Program

WHAT: Free webinar on the importance of a Computer Science (CS) education and different ways students’ can attain a Virtual High School computing certificate

WHO:     Sehba Khan, Regional Sales Manager, The Virtual High School

WHEN: Tuesday, May 23, 12:00 PM E.T.

REGISTER: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/6650233735301935107

 

Boston — May 15, 2017 — The Virtual High School (VHS, Inc.) will present a free, 30-minute webinar on the state of CS education, ways to increase students’ interest in computing and explore the different courses students can take to gain computational skills. The webinar is scheduled for Tuesday, May 23 at noon ET.

In this webinar, Sehba Khan, Regional Sales Manager for VHS, will discuss the different career opportunities within the field of CS, review the importance of students gaining a foundation in CS, and present the three pathways to The VHS CS Certificate.

To register for this free webinar, go to  https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/6650233735301935107

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Epson Announces PowerLite 680 for SMART – Ultra Short-Throw Presentation Display Compatible with SMART Board Interactive Whiteboards

New Presentation Display Specially Designed to Work with SMART Board M680 and 880 Interactive Whiteboards to Deliver Best-in-Class Learning Technology to K-12 Classrooms

 

LONG BEACH, Calif. – May 16, 2017Epson, the number-one selling projector brand worldwide, today announced its continued collaboration withSMART Technologies Inc. to bring Epson’s amazing image quality to classrooms using the SMART Board® M680 and 880 interactive whiteboards with the launch of the Epson PowerLite® 680 Ultra Short-Throw Presentation Display for SMART. This presentation display offers seamless integration with SMART Extended Control Panel (ECP)1.

 

Epson 3LCD projectors offer up to 3x higher color brightness than competitive models2.  Leveraging Epson’s proprietary 3LCD technology, the PowerLite 680 for SMART presentation display delivers bright, crisp images. It also minimizes glare and shadow interference, and includes versatile connectivity to meet a variety of classroom needs.

 

“Epson and SMART continue their longstanding partnership to bring the very best collaborative learning solutions to the classroom,” said Veronika Knight, product manager, Projectors, Epson America, Inc. “Epson’s PowerLite 680 for SMART was designed specifically for use with SMART Board® M680 and 880 interactive whiteboards to deliver educators and students with immersive collaborative experiences utilizing the display’s superior brightness.”

 

The new PowerLite 680 for SMART offers 3,500 lumens of color and white brightness3 for incredible images even in well-lit classrooms. Offering native XGA resolution and a 77-inch display size, the PowerLite 680 for SMART provides better readability in the classroom with large, vivid, easy-to-see images.

 

“Powered by SMART Notebook software, SMART Board® interactive whiteboards support enriched learning experiences by enabling true multi-student collaboration and small-group learning,” said Tom Ferrari, director, Channel, SMART Technologies. “The new Epson PowerLite 680 for SMART provides our customers with the option to maintain an integrated SMART interactive whiteboard system with enhanced display performance.”

 

Ideal for BYOD classrooms, the PowerLite 680 for SMART offers wireless functionality to help students learn and collaborate, regardless of where they sit. The PowerLite 680 for SMART enables instructors to share content between the big screen and wirelessly connected mobile devices for individualized learning. Students can wirelessly participate in discussions by displaying content from Chromebooks, PCs and Mac® computers, as well as iOS and Android devices, with the Epson iProjection wireless display solution4. Up to 50 users can connect to the presentation display simultaneously when used in conjunction with Epson Multi-PC projection, plus the Moderator device management software5. Displaying content from as many as four students simultaneously, the Moderator software is the perfect tool for showing a variety of content, or for comparing students’ work side-by-side. Teachers can also connect to an access point to share their display with the entire class, without adding more cables.

 

With up to 10,000 hours of lamp life in ECO Mode6, the PowerLite 680 for SMART is an all-in-one worry-free classroom display. The Epson PowerLite 680 for SMART also offers additional networking capabilities that allow schools to manage up to 1,024 Epson networked displays using the EasyMP® Monitor software or Crestron RoomView®. Additionally, using the Message Broadcasting plug-in for EasyMP Monitor, schools can send updates or announcements remotely to up to 1,024 Epson networked displays.

 

More about Epson’s new PowerLite 680 for SMART

The PowerLite 680 for SMART provides advanced quality, flexibility and performance for classroom collaboration, with features including:

 

Compatible – Specially designed to work with SMART Board M680 and 880 interactive whiteboards

 

Seamless integration – Connect and control displays via the SMART Extended Control Panel (ECP)1

 

Ultra Short-Throw Presentation Displays – Provides virtually no shadow interference

 

Up to 3x Higher Color Brightness2, and Reliable Performance – 3LCD, 3-chip technology

 

Versatile Connectivity – 3x HDMI® supports multiple high-definition A/V devices, with MHL® support, ensuring flexible placement and fast, easy setup7

 

Enhance Classroom Collaboration – Wireless display solution allows teachers to control personal device display and encourages students to participate4

 

Display High Quality Images – High brightness along with 3LCD technology creates bright, colorful images that can be seen even in well-lit rooms

 

Long-Life, Low-Cost Lamps – Lasts up to 10,000 hours in ECO Mode6, including $49 replacement lamps

 

Remote Management – Easy network connectivity with software included

 

Powerful Sound – Built-in 16W speaker and microphone input, or use external speakers, even in Standby Mode, for powerful sound to engage every student

 

As a leader in innovation and partnership, Epson also offers the Brighter Futures® program, a unique sales and support initiative available specifically for schools. Designed to help educators select and implement the best products for their classrooms while making the most of their budgets, Brighter Futures offers special pricing, extended Epson limited warranty coverage for a total of three years, dedicated education account managers, and toll-free technical support for all Epson projectors and associated accessories.

 

Epson PowerLite 680 for SMART Specifications

Product Color

Brightness3

White

Brightness3

Resolution Display MSRP Price
PowerLite 680 for SMART 3500 lumens 3500 lumens XGA 77 inches from 7 inches $1,160

 

About Epson Education Products

Designed with educator input, Epson’s advanced presentation display and projector technologies make bright, collaborative learning environments a reality. Compatible with a wide range of devices and widely-used interactive software, Epson presentation displays make it easy for teachers to share content to engage students, no matter where they sit in the classroom. Epson’s unmatched technology, service and support ensure educators are confident that high quality, bright images and multimedia are available in the classroom every day.

 

Availability and Support

The PowerLite 680 for SMART will be available in June through national resellers, pro audio/visual dealers, mail order, distribution, Epson.com, and the Brighter Futures program. Epson PowerLite presentation displays come with a two-year limited warranty (three years for Brighter Futures customers) that includes two elite technical support services – Epson PrivateLine® phone support with direct access to an expedited support telephone line, and a Road Service replacement program that includes product exchange in one business day with paid shipping. For additional information, visit www.epson.com/education.

 

About Epson
Epson is a global technology leader dedicated to connecting people, things and information with its original efficient, compact and precision technologies. With a lineup that ranges from inkjet printers and digital printing systems to 3LCD projectors, smart glasses, sensing systems and industrial robots, the company is focused on driving innovations and exceeding customer expectations in inkjet, visual communications, wearables and robotics.

Led by the Japan-based Seiko Epson Corporation, the Epson Group comprises more than 72,000 employees in 88 companies around the world, and is proud of its contributions to the communities in which it operates and its ongoing efforts to reduce environmental impacts.

Epson America, Inc., based in Long Beach, Calif., is Epson’s regional headquarters for the U.S., Canada, and Latin America. To learn more about Epson, please visit: epson.com. You may also connect with Epson America on Facebook (facebook.com/Epson), Twitter (twitter.com/EpsonAmerica), YouTube (youtube.com/EpsonAmerica), and Instagram (instagram.com/EpsonAmerica).

 

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1 Existing SMART Board M680 and 880 installations require the SMART Cable Adapter Kit, sold separately.

2 Color brightness (color light output) in brightest mode, measured by a third-party lab in accordance with IDMS 15.4. Color brightness will vary depending on usage conditions. Top-selling Epson 3LCD projectors versus top-selling 1-chip DLP projectors based on PMA Research sales data for Dec. 2015 through Nov. 2016.

3 Color brightness (color light output) and white brightness (white light output) will vary depending on usage conditions. Color light output measured in accordance with IDMS 15.4; white light output measured in accordance with ISO 21118.

 


Hillsborough County Kicks Off the 6th Annual Summer Reading Summit

This year’s summit will spotlight the community-wide ‘Read on myON’ program, which provides free digital books to more than 245,000 users

(Hillsborough, FL) May 4, 2017 — Hillsborough County Public Schools (HCPS), along with nine community partners, today announces the 6th annual summer reading initiative with myON, the leading provider of personalized literacy solutions in the K-12 marketplace. The community-wide program, “Read on myON” launched in February 2012 to prevent summer slide, increase literacy rates through awareness, and provide every child from birth through eighth grade with equitable access to a large collection of enhanced digital books.

Superintendent Jeff Eakins and Tampa-Hillsborough County Public Library (THPL) Director Andrew Breidenbaugh, along with other local dignitaries, emceed by well-known community member, Yvonne Fry, will kick off this summer’s reading challenge along with connecting childcare providers to free resources available at the Summer Reading Summit hosted by the Tampa Bay Lightning Foundation on Tuesday, May 9th, 2017, from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. (EDT) at Tampa Bay Lightning’s Amelie Arena.

In addition to spotlighting free reading resources, incentives, and contests supporting summer reading, this year’s Summer Reading Summit will have a panel of community members such as Superintendent Eakins, THPL’s Director Andrew Breidenbaugh, David Egles- Tampa Bay Rays CommunityEngagement Manager, Warren Hope Dawson-Attorney at Law, Tracy Keenan-HDR Engineering, and Lindsey Robbins- Read to Dream, discussing the impact of literacy and summer learning on their area of expertise. The Summer Reading Challenge will be awarding experiences to our children and their families as reading incentives. Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ top prize will include a “Behind the Scenes Tour” of One Buc Place, in addition to the Glazer Children’s Museums prize packages and much more!

Attendees of the summit can browse through reading options and share ideas to enhance summer programming with representatives of local organizations including United Way Suncoast, Hillsborough Public Library Cooperative, HCPS’ Library Media Services, Children’s Board of Hillsborough County, Arts Council, I-Station, Scholastic, Barnes and Noble, Bess the Book Bus, WEDU, Tampa Bay Times, Bricks Smart, Early Literacy Matters, and myON.

“We can close the achievement gap when we work collaboratively with community partners. Summer reading with myON is the perfect opportunity for children to read for fun, learn new things and explore faraway places. I hope everyone will encourage their children to get involved in high-quality summer programs and innovative practices. Making certain that our students are reading helps us prepare students for life.” said Superintendent Jeff Eakins.

 

In addition to key organizations, the myON Street Team will return this summer as a vital component to encouraging and motivating students to read. The vision of the myON Street Team is to convene a group of students from Hillsborough County Public Schools and area Universities to provide them professional development opportunities to learn how to help students understand the value of literacy and learning; then continue their mission by travelling to summer sites to encourage and motivate students to continue to learn over the summer.

Along with HCPS and myON, all of the original community partners have renewed their commitment to “Read on myON,” including Hillsborough County Public Schools, Children’s Board of Hillsborough County, Hillsborough County Public Library Cooperative, United Way Suncoast, BOCC Head Start, Tampa Housing Authority, and the Early Learning Coalition. And in January of 2017, Read on myON Partnership welcomed an additional partner, YMCA.

“The most precious tool you can give a child is the ability to read, and a book! It can change lives, create an escape, and encourage greatness,” said Kelley Parris, executive director of the Children’s Board of Hillsborough County.

HCPS is the eighth-largest district in the nation, serving many English language learners in a population where 17% of students are below the poverty line. The “Read on myON” project has engaged parents, teachers, administrators, students, and enthusiastic nonprofits to make literacy for all a top priority. Since the start of the partnership, more than 245,000 Hillsborough county users have read over 11.1 million books, spending 1.5 million hours—that’s about 256 years of reading.

All Summer Care Providers and educators from Hillsborough County are encouraged to register for the Summer Reading Summit for free here.

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SIEMENS FOUNDATION AND DISCOVERY EDUCATION TO HOLD

FIRST EVER NATIONAL DAY OF STEM ON MAY 16, 2017

 

Siemens’ National Day of STEM Includes New, Original Hands-on Activities, Career Videos

and Live Chats with STEM Experts

 

Silver Spring, Md. (May 4, 2017) – Siemens Foundation and Discovery Education,  announced that the first ever Siemens’ National Day of STEM – a virtual initiative dedicated to delving into conversations about the STEM field  –  will be held on May 16, 2017, starting at 10:00 am ET.

 

Available at no cost, Siemen’s National Day of STEM will provide engaging career information for middle and high school students and facilitate LIVE interaction via social media between educators, Siemens Employees, and STEM professionals.  The event is an extension of the Siemens STEM Day site that includes a K-12 online STEM experiencewith more than 130 elementary, middle school and high school resources designed to support STEM curriculum and instruction with digital content. Online materials emphasize the importance of STEM through standards-aligned, fun and engaging hands-on classroom activities and videos designed to support the development of students’ ability to investigate, question and understand how the world works within STEM principles.

Siemens’ National Day of STEM offers:

  • Career Vignettes – new STEM career videos, created at Siemens’ Energy Hub in Charlotte, NC, provide students with insights into the fields of engineering and manufacturing and illuminate the benefits of hands-on learning and apprenticeship.
  • Online Activities – new free, downloadable online activities for high school students in the areas of science, technology, and engineering add to the breadth of K-12 resources already available.
  • LIVE STEM Chat – at 12:00 pm ET / 9:00 am PT on May 16, educators will have the opportunity to submit questions to Discovery Education STEM experts and Siemens employees that will be answered in real-time.

 

Additional interactive student activities can be found on the STEM Day site and filtered by grade level, category or career path, and explore topics spanning healthcare, engineering, IT, science, math, technology, energy and manufacturing.  A Teacher Support Center also provides educators 5-minute prep videos, live demonstrations of activities and downloadable one-pagers for best practice and how-to guides.

Learn more about Siemens’ National Day of STEM and download the program’s free resources athttp://siemensstemday.com.  Submit questions live on Twitter at @DiscoveryEd and @Siemens; and join the conversation using #PowerofSTEMday.

About the Siemens Foundation
The Siemens Foundation has invested more than $100 million in the United States to advance workforce development and education initiatives in science, technology, engineering and math.  The Siemens Foundation’s mission is inspired by the culture of innovation, research and continuous learning that is the hallmark of Siemens’ companies. Together, the programs at the Siemens Foundation are closing the opportunity gap for young people in the U.S. when it comes to STEM careers, and igniting and sustaining today’s STEM workforce and tomorrow’s scientists and engineers. For further information, visit http://www.siemens-foundation.org/  or follow @SFoundation.
About Discovery Education
Discovery Education is the global leader in standards-based digital content for K-12, transforming teaching and learning with award-winning digital textbooks, multimedia content, professional development, and the largest professional learning community of its kind. Serving 4.5 million educators and over 50 million students, Discovery Education’s services are in half of U.S. classrooms, 50 percent of all primary schools in the UK, and more than 50 countries. Discovery Education partners with districts, states and like-minded organizations to captivate students, empower teachers, and transform classrooms with customized solutions that increase academic achievement. Discovery Education is powered by Discovery Communications (NASDAQ: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK), the number one nonfiction media company in the world. Explore the future of education at www.discoveryeducation.com.

 

 


AASA, Discovery Education Launch Series of Case Studies Featuring Best Practices and Strategies for Building Dynamic Digital Learning Environments

—School Superintendents Leading the Digital Transition Provide Insight into Creating Engaging Learning Experiences—

Alexandria, Va. and Silver Spring, Md. – May 9, 2017 – The creation of dynamic, digital learning environments by superintendents across the country are profiled in a new series of case studies created byAASA, The School Superintendents Association, and Discovery Education.

The school district leaders showcased in this series are members of AASA’s Digital Consortium, which provides them with opportunities to work together and gain insights into emerging successful models for using digital materials to build engaging learning experiences that support the success of all learners.

“The highlighted profiles illustrate some of the best practices and strategies that have made the digital transition a reality in the communities served by members of our Digital Consortium,” said Daniel A. Domenech, AASA executive director. “We’re thankful to the superintendents who participated in this series, and to Discovery Education for collaborating with us to create these case studies. Together, we’ve captured some great examples of the tremendous work school systems across the country are doing to build the dynamic digital learning environments today’s students need for success beyond graduation.”

Superintendents profiled in the AASA-Discovery Education Case Study Series include:

  • Kristine Gilmore, D.C. Everest Area School District, Schofield, Wisc.
  • Mike Lubelfeld, Deerfield Public School District 109, Deerfield, Ill.
  • Aaron Spence, Virginia Beach City Public Schools, Virginia Beach, Va.

 

“By creating modern digital classrooms that mirror students’ use of technology in their personal lives, the superintendents profiled in these case studies are not only transforming teaching and learning in their school districts, but they are also leading a movement that is sweeping across the country,” said Mark Edwards, senior vice president of digital learning, Discovery Education, and the AASA 2013 National Superintendent of the Year. “Discovery Education and AASA are pleased to highlight the work of Superintendents Gilmore, Lubelfeld and Spence.”

The series also contains a powerful white paper entitled Stronger Together: How Superintendents PLCs Can Make Your Job Easier. This report focuses on how today’s superintendents are using AASA and Discovery Education to connect with peers nationwide to create their own professional learning communities.

The series concludes with A Transformation That Propels Advances in Student Learning, which profiles the impact of AASA’s Digital Consortium. Founded in 2014, the Consortium was created to support school district leadership in the areas of innovation, creativity and technology. Membership in the Consortium enriches the collective leadership experiences of participating superintendents through the review and careful analysis of evidence-informed practices. Both the case studies and the white papers are available at no cost on theAASA and Discovery Education websites.

For more information or to find out how to participate in the Digital Consortium, visit the AASA website or contact Mort Sherman, AASA associate executive director, at msherman@aasa.org.

For more information on Discovery Education’s programs and services, visit www.discoveryeducation.com.

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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.

About Discovery Education
Discovery Education is the global leader in standards-based digital content for K-12, transforming teaching and learning with award-winning digital textbooks, multimedia content, professional development and the largest professional learning community of its kind. Serving 4.5 million educators and more than 50 million students, Discovery Education’s services are in half of U.S. classrooms, 50 percent of all primary schools in the U.K., and more than 50 countries. Discovery Education partners with districts, states and like-minded organizations to captivate students, empower teachers and transform classrooms with customized solutions that increase academic achievement. Discovery Education is powered by Discovery Communications (NASDAQ: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK), the number one nonfiction media company in the world. Explore the future of education at www.discoveryeducation.com.

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DISCOVERY EDUCATION AND NUTRIENTS FOR LIFE FOUNDATION AWARD SIX MIDDLE SCHOOLS GRANTS IN NATIONAL “LET IT GROW CONTEST,” FOCUSED ON THE SCIENCE BEHIND AGRICULTURE

–St. Mary’s School of the Diocese of Omaha in Bellevue, NE Wins Grand Prize;

Special In-School Assembly To be Held On May 24, 2017 —

–Five Middle Schools Receive Grants and Prizes as Winners of National Earth Science Contest–

 

SILVER SPRING, Md. (May 11, 2017) – Discovery Education, the leading provider of digital content and professional development for K-12 classrooms, and the Nutrients for Life Foundation, an educational non-profit that teaches students and the public about the vital role soil nutrients play in growing our world, announced the winners of the 2017 Let It Grow Contesttoday. The contest, now in its second year, awards more than $10,000 in prizes to six middle schools nationwide as part of From the Ground Up: The Science of Soil, an education initiative that offers middle school students a broadened perspective of the importance of soil science. Educators, parents and community members were invited to enter the Let It Grow Contest by answering soil-related questions and voting daily for a middle school of their choice.

Out of more than 40,000 entries nationwide, St. Mary’s School of Bellevue, NE received the votes needed to take home the 2017 grand prize.

 

“It is incredible to have St. Mary’s School named the grand prize winner of the Let It Grow Contest,” said Dr. Trish Wallinger, Principal, St. Mary’s School. “From the Ground Up: The Science of Soil has allowed our classrooms to dig into the science all around us with fun activities. I would absolutely encourage middle school educators across the country to include these resources into their classroom instruction to explore the role agriculture plays in providing nutrition and sustenance to our communities.”

In addition to St. Mary’s School, five runner-up schools will each receive a $1,000 agricultural grant. These schools include:

  • Hawley Middle School in Hawley, TX
  • Central Middle School in Eunice, LA
  • Academy for Change in Chino, CA
  • Sunrise School in Monroeville, PA
  • Blacklick Valley Junior Senior High School in Nanty Glo, PA

 

On Wednesday, May 24, 2017, Discovery Education and the Nutrients for Life Foundation will host the Let It Grow Contest grand prize winner assembly at St. Mary’s School featuring interactive science activities for students, educators and community members to experience. Following the assembly, the school will be presented with a check. Additionally, St. Mary’s School will receive an introduction to a local agronomist as part of their grand prize.

“Learning about crop nutrients and their vital role in food production is something these students will take with they as they grow. Through our partnership with Discovery Education, we are able to make these concepts of plant growth and soil health come alive,” said Nutrients for Life Executive Director Harriet Wegmeyer. “We are pleased to see so many students, educators and community members using these resources and learning!”

Launched in 2013, From the Ground Up: The Science of Soil offers middle school students, educators and families a suite of comprehensive digital resources including standards-aligned interactive lesson plans, digital explorations, bilingual family activities and agricultural career profiles. Designed to highlight the importance of soil, its nutrients and the science behind sustainable plant and crop growth, these resources are available at no cost and engage students of all learning styles.

“Discovery Education is proud to continue our partnership with the Nutrients for Life Foundation and salutes the winners of this contest which is part of a larger effort to give students a deeper understanding of core science concepts as they discover the complex world of soils,” said Lori McFarling, senior vice president, Discovery Education. “From the Ground Up: The Science of Soil is an award-winning program that brings STEM to life through interactive curriculum and resources that engage today’s learners.”

 

To learn more about From the Ground Up: The Science of Soil’s free resources and the Let It Grow Contest please visit: http://www.thescienceofsoil.com/.

 

About Discovery Education

Discovery Education is the global leader in standards-based digital content for K-12, transforming teaching and learning with award-winning digital textbooks, multimedia content, professional development, and the largest professional learning community of its kind. Serving 4.5 million educators and over 50 million students, Discovery Education’s services are in half of U.S. classrooms, 50 percent of all primary schools in the UK, and more than 50 countries. Discovery Education partners with districts, states and like-minded organizations to captivate students, empower teachers, and transform classrooms with customized solutions that increase academic achievement. Discovery Education is powered by Discovery Communications (NASDAQ: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK), the number one nonfiction media company in the world. Explore the future of education at www.discoveryeducation.com.

 

About Nutrients for Life

The Nutrients for Life Foundation spearheads the mission to educate students and the public about the importance of responsible fertilizer use in growing healthy crops, increasing food production, and feeding a growing population. Since formation more than ten years ago, the Foundation has reached over 24 million students with resources, such as Nourishing the Planet in the 21st Century, the Smithsonian-approved STEM curriculum.  Nutrients for Life’s 2013 partnership with Discovery Education has added a new dimension of innovative, interactive digital resources for the modern classroom.  The Nutrients for Life Foundation is a tax-exempt status organization described in Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.

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More than 1,000 English Learners in Utah

Using Supplemental Online and Blended Learning Solution from Fuel Education

 

Students in grades 6-10 can access the online content anytime, anywhere, allowing them to learn the fundamentals of academic English, complete projects, and help accelerate their English language learning

 

Herndon, Virginia, May 11, 2017 — As part of its 5 Million Voices reporting project, NPR analyzed U.S. Department of Education data to determine the achievement of English Learners (ELs) across the country. In Utah, the average high school graduation rate for ELs is 62 percent, while the average for their native English-speaking peers is 83.9 percent.

 

In an effort to close this achievement gap for its EL students, the Utah State Board of Education (USBE) implemented the online English Learners solution from Middlebury Interactive Languages, now part of Fuel Educationâ (FuelEdâ). Starting this spring, approximately 1,000 secondary students spanning 12 high schools, eight middle schools, five charters schools and the USBE’s Refugee Educational Training Center will use the online solution as part of a blended learning model.

 

“We wanted to use an EL solution that allowed for blended learning in order to highlight our excellent teachers,” said Dr. Christelle Estrada, Education Specialist for Title III and Refugee & Immigrant Programs at the USBE. “Additionally, we wanted a solution that focused on academic content vocabulary and inquiry based learning in core content areas, and aligned to assessment standards.”

 

In addition to helping students learn academic English and hone their literacy development, the supplemental curriculum connects to students’ cultural backgrounds to build a context for the content. Students work on a combination of individual activities in English language arts, math, science and social studies to reinforce their listening, speaking, reading and writing skills. The activities can be modified for students of all proficiency levels. The curriculum also includes project-based learning activities during which students work in small groups. Allowing the groups to develop their projects’ topics and forms of delivery empowers them to take ownership of their learning while also reinforcing collaboration and English proficiency.

 

The curriculum aligns to the English Language Proficiency Assessment for the 21st Century (ELPA21) standards and the Common Core State Standards, and is correlated to the World-Class Instructional Design and Assessment (WiDA) standards.

 

“The curriculum’s best feature is its alignment to the four WiDA standards for speaking, reading, writing, and listening,” said Matthew Emerson, Secondary Specialist for Title III at USBE. “The curriculum gives students an excellent base of language skills while simultaneously allowing teachers, the true pedagogy experts, to deepen instruction based on students’ needs when necessary. It’s an ideal marriage of complete curriculum and teacher input, and I believe it’s going to bridge the gap between engagement and focused language development.”

 

To watch a video and learn more, visit fueleducation.com/ell.

 

About Fuel Education

Fuel Educationâ partners with school districts to fuel personalized learning and transform the education experience inside and outside the classroom. The company provides innovative solutions for pre-K through 12th grade that empower districts to implement successful online and blended learning programs. Its open, easy-to-use Personalized Learning Platform, PEAK™, enables teachers to customize courses using their own content, FuelEd courses and titles, third-party content, and open educational resources. Fuel Education serves more than 2,000 school districts, offering one of the industry’s largest catalogs of K–12 digital curriculum, certified instruction, professional development, and educational services. To learn more, visit fueleducation.com and Twitter.

 

©2017 Fuel Education LLC. All rights reserved. Fuel Education, FuelEd, and Summit are trademarks of Fuel Education LLC or its affiliates. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

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N.J.’s Freehold Township School District Implements Verso —

Rethinks Professional Development, Improves Student Engagement

 

FREEHOLD, N.J., May 10, 2017 — A K-12 school district singled out as one of the country’s 20 most innovative, and guided by a leader named New Jersey’s top superintendent, revealed this week it is transforming learning with a personalized professional development and student engagement solution that is helping teachers meet learners’ needs in unparalleled ways.

Freehold Township School District administrators said the introduction of  Verso – a cloud-based platform that supports educators with high-impact teaching strategies to promote deeper learning  – is one of the key reasons their teachers are newly focused and working differently, while students are noticeably more engaged learners. Additionally, the district reports those teachers using Verso are more routinely transitioning their students from surface to deep learning during lessons and through their homework.

“The professional development we’re seeing with Verso encompasses the entire student-teacher experience,” said Superintendent Dr. Ross Kasun, who was selected 2017 New Jersey Superintendent of the Year. “Verso is helping our teachers improve student engagement, provide visibility on student thinking, and transition students into a noticeably deeper stage of learning.

“We are on a path toward personalizing learning for all students with much more explicit awareness of their needs. Verso is the answer to many of the challenges we were facing.”

Freehold Township School District  – named one of the country’s 20 most innovative school districts by Washington, D.C.-based Digital Promise  – originally implemented Verso to help improve outdated homework practices. Verso offers questions and teaching strategies to:

  • help students solve problems;
  • allow them to own the opportunity to generate discussion; and
  • help gather more data on student thinking and behavior than they were otherwise receiving.

“By design, Verso facilitates conversation through effective questioning,” said Dr. Jeff Huguenin, principal of Freehold Township’s Joseph J. Catena Elementary School. “Given that, we use Verso to foster healthy dialogue that empowers the voices of teachers so our professional development and learning grows exponentially.”

Kasun said his teachers aren’t afraid to try new strategies in the classroom and further believes the district is on a strong path toward personalizing learning for all students with greater awareness of their needs.

“We find our students are asking better questions now; they’re collaborating and providing feedback by commenting on other students’ posts,” Kasun said. “Students who were previously reluctant to share have now found their voice, and many are now excited to obtain peer feedback.”

Huguenin reports his students have enthusiastically embraced the feedback element. “Participation is high, and the kids love it,” he said. “It’s a safe place to engage and kids want to collaborate. No one is afraid to raise their hand anymore.”

Another Freehold Township principal said Verso, “provides us with an opportunity to review highly effective pedagogy with our teachers so they can improve their practice on demand. Our teachers are working differently now; they have the data and teaching strategies (through the Verso support guides) to adjust lessons and move all students forward,” said West Freehold Elementary School’s Eddie Aldarelli. “Teachers are now focusing more on the ability to ask questions, the process of asking questions, how powerful those questions can be, and the art of instructional practices. It’s such a powerful tool.”

All district teachers were initially offered the opportunity to use Verso in class and as a homework tool. Administrators shared how teachers responded quickly as they discovered Verso’s powerful professional development, feedback and teacher-collaboration features.

“Our district continues to explore the capability of Verso as a teacher and student learning tool and we have been extremely impressed with how the platform provides an excellent balance between the two,” Huguenin said.

Freehold Township School District, based in Monmouth County, serves K-12 students, includes eight schools, 300 teachers and 3,950 students.

In use by more than 12,000 K-12 schools in over 100 countries, Verso is in its second year of marketing to K-12 districts in the U.S. with enterprise district-wide partnerships in half-dozen states. Moreover, it recently opened its first-ever U.S. headquarters, based in California. The key to Verso’s early success, according to its CEO/Founder Colin Wood, is recognizing the importance of reliable, easy-to-read data on how students are engaging and helping teachers with the best, research-based instructional strategies to deliver quality personalized learning.

For more information about Freehold Township School District, visit www.freeholdtwp.k12.nj.us. For more information about Verso, visit its website at www.versolearning.com.

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HEALTHY WEIGHT COMMITMENT FOUNDATION AND DISCOVERY EDUCATION AWARD MORE THAN $240,000 IN PRIZES TO DESERVING SCHOOLS NATIONWIDE AS PART OF HEALTHY LIVING INITIATIVE

 

— For the first time, Elementary School in Texas Awarded Grand Prize Giveaway for a

School Serving the Military Community —

 

Silver Spring, Md. (May 10, 2017) – The Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation (HWCF), a broad-based not-for-profit organization whose focus is the reduction of childhood obesity, and Discovery Education, the leading provider of digital content and professional development for K-12 classrooms, today announced the winners of the 2017 Healthy Playground Makeover Sweepstakes and Smart from the Start Awards, annually offered incentive programs from the Together Counts™ program. Designed to encourage students to lead healthy, active lifestyles, these programs strive to increase the impact of health and wellness programs both in and out of the classroom, and will award more than $240,000 in prizes to deserving schools nationwide.

 

The following schools have been chosen as this year’s grand prize winners:

 

Healthy Playground Makeover Sweepstakes:

Grand prize winners:

–          Welch Elementary School in Newnan, GA

–          Sunset Park Elementary School in Wilmington, NC (*Title I)

–          Randolph Elementary School in Universal City, TX (*Military)

 

Selected from nearly 620,000 entries nationwide, these three schools are the 2017 grand prize winners and will be awarded $30,000 in cash and sporting goods and a new PlayCubesTM Playground from Playworld, a leading manufacturer of imaginative playground and fitness equipment (entire prize package valued at $60,405 each).  Randolph Elementary School was the first winner ever of the grand prize to a U.S. military base or installation for a school or community organization serving the children of active duty military. Sunset Park Elementary was awarded the grand prize for a school that qualifies for Title I funding due to the number of students receiving free or reduced price lunch.

 

“Welch Elementary is so excited about our Healthy Playground grant.  Our mission is, ‘We Ensure the Success of Each Student’.  In order for students to be successful, they must be well rounded and feel good about themselves.  This will give our students the opportunity to get fit and show their success.” – Janice Smith, Principal, Welch Elementary School

 

“As an urban school located near downtown Wilmington, qualifying for a 100% free breakfast and lunch program, many of our families struggle to initiate and/or maintain a healthy lifestyle. This prize will allow us to focus some of our energy and resources into assisting our students and families to learn how a healthy lifestyle will help them achieve their goals.  As you know, a healthy body and mind are keys to success.” – Diego Lehocky, Principal, Sunset Park Elementary School

“Wow!  A new playground for our kids!  A playground is the place for children to develop not only physically but emotionally.  It’s every child’s dream and for the military child, it’s the best place to be to meet a new friend.” – Allana Hemenway, Principal, Randolph Elementary School, Randolph Field Independent School District.

 

Smart from the Start Awards:

Grand prize winner:

–          Sacred Heart School in Camden, NJ

 

The Smart from the Start Awards empower preschool teachers to strategize wellness initiatives using the free Smart from the Start Pre-K curriculum in their classrooms. Sacred Heart School in Camden, NJ will receive a $20,000 grant for their action plan to focus on eating a variety of fruits and vegetables and incorporating more physical activity in and out of the classroom.  Sacred Heart students lack access to green space for physical activity and high rates of violence and crime make many parents hesitant about letting their children play outdoors.

 

To improve health and wellness habits for their students, Sacred Heart School used the Smart from the Startlessons to get their preschoolers moving more while also making efforts to include fresh produce in meals and snacks. In addition, parents received a newsletter on nutrition. Sacred Heart School will use the award grant to create an outdoor classroom, develop a Health and Wellness Library with resources for students to bring home, and purchase cooking equipment to enable the school to have family cooking nights.

 

“We are so grateful for this award and the long-term impact it will have! We are eager and excited to make investments in equipment and materials that will enhance nutrition and physical activity for our children for years to come, both at school and in partnership with their families.” – Cheryl Heatwole, Montessori Preschool teacher, Sacred Heart School.

 

To see a comprehensive list of all winners and prizes please visit, http://www.togethercounts.com/at-school/win-for-your-school.

 

Together Counts

 

Established in 2010, the Together Counts program is a comprehensive health and wellness initiative designed to encourage students, educators and families to live healthy lifestyles. Since the program’s launch, a total of more than $1.6M has been awarded to deserving schools across the country.  Available at no cost, the program offers educators and students nationwide standards-based curriculum, as well as the chance to win cash grants and equipment for their schools. Updated in 2016 to address overall wellness, lesson plans tailored to Pre-K, K-2 and 3-5 teach goal-planning skills and strategies for developing lifelong resilience. All lesson plans, family resources and incentive programs can be found at http://www.togethercounts.com/; follow @TogetherCounts on Twitter and Facebook.

 

“Empowering children to make healthy decisions that become healthy habits for life is a top priority in the battle to reverse obesity rates,” said Becky Johnson, Executive Director of the Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation.  “Rewarding schools that develop and implement innovative healthy lifestyle programs is the perfect way to honor their leadership and develop a compendium of best practices that can be adopted in other communities at the same time. We are proud to support these programs and congratulate all of the winners.”

“Discovery Education is proud of our continued partnership with the Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation to reward schools across America through the Healthy Playground Makeover Sweepstakes and Smart from the Start Awards for their impactful efforts on improving students’ health and wellness,” said Lori McFarling, Senior Vice President, Discovery Education. “These programs offer the opportunity to teach the importance of health and wellness, and help establish healthy habits for students early on.”

 

About Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation
Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation (HWCF) is a broad-based not-for-profit organization whose mission is to help reduce obesity, especially childhood obesity, by encouraging positive and permanent lifestyle changes among school-aged children and their families. The Foundation develops and implements innovative and collaborative educational, marketplace and community solutions with its coalition of 300 corporate and not-for-profit partners.  Through its free, award-winning Together Counts™ wellness curriculum, the Foundation has reached more than 44 million students in the U.S. As the first commitment to former First Lady Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move initiative and verified by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, HWCF’s food and beverage company members gave consumers more lower calorie options by removing 6.4 trillion calories from their products– surpassing their pledge by more than 400 percent three years ahead of schedule. In June 2016 the program expanded internationally with the launch of the Latin American Commitment to a Healthy Future at the World Economic Forum in Medellín, Colombia.www.healthyweightcommit.org


About Discovery Education

Discovery Education is the global leader in standards-based digital content for K-12, transforming teaching and learning with award-winning digital textbooks, multimedia content, professional development, and the largest professional learning community of its kind. Serving 4.5 million educators and over 50 million students, Discovery Education’s services are in half of U.S. classrooms, 50 percent of all primary schools in the UK, and more than 50 countries. Discovery Education partners with districts, states and like-minded organizations to captivate students, empower teachers, and transform classrooms with customized solutions that increase academic achievement. Discovery Education is powered by Discovery Communications (NASDAQ: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK), the number one nonfiction media company in the world. Explore the future of education at www.discoveryeducation.com.

 

About Playworld
Playworld is a division of PlayPower® Inc. and believes The World Needs Play®. Play is vital to everyone’s health and well-being. It’s something you are never too young or too old to enjoy. We develop playground environments where creativity is king, belly laughs are welcome and children make the rules. Playworld equipment is designed to unleash the transformational power of play so bodies grow stronger, children play safely and imagination can take flight. For over 45 years, Playworld has created innovative, inclusive and meaningful outdoor play experiences for all ages and abilities. Visit Playworld.com.

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Two Esteemed Peer-Reviewed Educational Journals Publish Studies from Lexia Learning

Researchers on Using Blended Learning for Literacy Instruction

 

Reading Psychology Study Shows Effects of Teacher Engagement;

Journal of Educational Research Study Focuses on Outcomes for Diverse Students at a Title I School

 

BOSTON (May 10, 2017)Reading Psychology and the Journal of Educational Research, two highly acclaimed peer-reviewed education journals, have published findings from two different studies conducted by Lexia Learning, a Rosetta Stone Inc. (NYSE: RST) company. The study published in Reading Psychology explores the influence of teacher engagement on the implementation of a blended learning reading program; the study published in the Journal of Educational Research discusses the effects of the blended learning program’s school-wide implementation at an urban Title I elementary school.

 

“The results of these two studies indicate there is a benefit to using a blended learning approach to literacy instruction for a diverse student population, particularly in the early grades, but such an approach requires teacher engagement to be truly successful,” said Dr. Elizabeth R. Kazakoff, senior researcher at Lexia, who participated in conducting of both studies. “Becoming a proficient reader by third grade is a key predictor of future academic and career success, including high school graduation, so understanding how best to help children make the transition from learning to read, to reading to learn is paramount. These two studies give educators a deeper understanding of how educators can use educational technologies most effectively with their students.”

 

Brief descriptions of each study are below.

 

Reading Psychology

More than 760 schools across the United States participated in this study by Lexia, “Exploring the impact of engaged teachers on implementation fidelity and reading skill gains in a blended learning reading program.” Lexia researchers compared the rate of reading improvement among 19,366 students with engaged teachers with that of 171,850 students in the same schools whose teachers were less engaged with the blended learning program.

 

Students of the engaged teachers not only began the study with significantly higher fidelity of use and more units completed than their peers in the second group, they continued the trend of higher fidelity of use and more completed reading units throughout the study. Consequently, study results showed significant improvements in reading skills during the analyzed period for students of engaged teachers as a result of their students’ consistent use of the blended learning program.

Journal of Educational Research

The study featured in The Journal of Educational Research, titled “Elementary school-wide implementation of a blended learning program for reading intervention in a Title I school: Implications for students who are English Learners,”examined the implementation of the blended learning program in a Title I urban elementary school during the 2014-2015 school year.

 

The study evaluated the program’s effect on the reading performance of 641 students in kindergarten through grade five via pre- and posttests on a standardized reading assessment called Group Reading Assessment and Diagnostic Evaluation (GRADE™). Researchers found that student progress in the online component of the blended learning program was a significant predictor of their reading performance growth on GRADE even when controlling for student grade level, initial student skill level, and English Learner (EL) status. Students in kindergarten through second grade showed more substantial gains than students in later grades.

 

“The gains in reading for students who are English Learners were especially important because 18 percent of the school’s student population are EL,” said Dr. Kazakoff. “Only 24 percent of students who are English Learners in Massachusetts, the state in which the school’s located, scored proficient or above on the 2013-14 state reading and language arts assessment, far below the 69 percent overall proficiency average. That’s not a unique phenomenon. Teachers across the United States are looking for ways to support their students who are English Learners, and we have demonstrated that blended learning can indeed help them and, even better, make the greatest impact just before that crucial third grade transition point in literacy learning.”

 

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About Lexia Learning

Lexia Learning, a division of Rosetta Stone, empowers educators through adaptive assessment and personalized instruction. For more than 30 years, the company has been on the leading edge of research and product development as it relates to student reading skills. With a robust offering that includes solutions for differentiated instruction, personalized learning and assessment, Lexia Learning provides educators with the tools to intensify and accelerate literacy skills development for students of all abilities. For more information, visit www.lexialearning.com.

 

About Rosetta Stone

Rosetta Stone Inc. (NYSE: RST) is dedicated to changing people’s lives through the power of language and literacy education. The company’s innovative digital solutions drive positive learning outcomes for the inspired learner at home or in schools and workplaces around the world.

Founded in 1992, Rosetta Stone’s language division uses cloud-based solutions to help all types of learners read, write, and speak more than 30 languages. Lexia Learning, Rosetta Stone’s literacy education division, was founded more than 30 years ago and is a leader in the literacy education space. Today, Lexia helps students build fundamental reading skills through its rigorously researched, independently evaluated, and widely respected instruction and assessment programs.

For more information, visit www.rosettastone.com.  “Rosetta Stone” is a registered trademark or trademark of Rosetta Stone Ltd. in the United States and other countries.

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SAFARI Montage and Schoology Partner to Simplify Digital Learning
Schoology establishes tight integration with SAFARI Montage’s leading K-12 Learning Object Repository (LOR)

New York (May 10, 2017) SAFARI Montage and Schoology have partnered to enable mutual K-12 clients to seamlessly integrate the SAFARI Montage LOR within Schoology’s award-winning LMS. The enhanced integration enables teachers to leverage SAFARI Montage LOR’s rich resources as well as district-curated learning objects while building engaging lessons and curriculum within Schoology.

For the full release, click here.

 

 

 

 

 


 

PR with Panache! Becomes First PR and Inbound Marketing Firm to Serve the Education Marketplace

The award-winning PR firm offers a unique, effective combination of creative storytelling and data-driven marketing  

 

(Minneapolis, MN) May 2, 2017PR with Panache! (PRP), the award-winning public relations, storytelling, and strategic marketing firm, is thrilled to announce that it has become the first full-service PR and inbound marketing firm specifically focused on serving the education and ed tech industries. This shift was driven by PRP’s passion for improving teaching and learning by supporting companies in their mission to best serve ed tech decision-makers.

 

“Becoming the education market’s first full-service inbound marketing, PR, and storytelling firm demonstrates our deep investment in our clients as well as improving outcomes within our industry,” said Jacob Hanson, managing partner at PRP. “An inbound marketing approach is perfectly suited to how decision-makers within education want to interact with vendors. We have the expertise to deliver our clients the world-class inbound marketing, inbound sales, and public relations support they deserve.”

 

According to Hanson, PRP’s transition to becoming education’s first full-service inbound marketing and storytelling firm began more than two years ago, when district CIO’s and other decision-makers made it clear to the industry that their purchasing decisions were not aligned with vendors’ end-of-year or promotional calendars. “District and school leaders prefer to work with vendors who approach them as a valued partner in solving their challenges, and who deploy a non-disruptive, inbound marketing approach that fits not only their purchasing cycle but also their teaching and learning needs,” said Hanson.

 

“By creating and leveraging dynamic content, as well as deploying powerful marketing automation tools, we attract and move education decision-makers through our client’s lead funnel that is aligned with their prospect’s journey to purchase,” added Hanson. “Over the past two years, we have consistently seen our vision for the future of PR and marketing align with the direction in which the education market and our clients are moving.”

 

PRP’s passion for increasing the effectiveness of clients’ PR, storytelling, and marketing campaigns led it to partner with HubSpot. With the inbound marketing platform at its fingertips, PRP has industry-leading tools for collecting and analyzing the data that clients need to engagetheir leads, prospects, and customers in productive conversations that lead to sales. Each inbound marketing-certified member of the PRP team brings a different area of expertise to its clients, from strategy to content creation to SEO. PRP supports all levels of inbound marketing, using not only HubSpot, but also Pardot, Marketo, and other marketing-automation platforms.

 

For more information about Inbound Marketing in Education, please visit our website.

 

About PR with Panache!

PR with Panache! (PRP) is the premiere modern-day storytelling firm for the education marketplace. PRP has successfully connected companies and educators for more than 20 years, focusing solely on the PK-12 marketplace. We have worked with hundreds of companies to ensure their story is heard and repeated. Our deep knowledge of the industry and strong relationships with educational media, industry stakeholders, and thought leaders allow us to open doors and generate the awareness our clients need to become household names. Named the Best PR firm in Education by EdTech Digest in 2015 and 2016, PRP became a certified HubSpot Agency Partner in 2017. Today we combine creative storytelling and data-driven marketing to expand client brands, support integrated and inbound marketing campaigns, and launch new products. To learn more, please visit PRwithPanache.com.

 

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The Virtual High School Announces New Computer Science Pathways

Certificate Program

 

Boston —May 2, 2017 — Last year, the White House reported that despite the growing importance of computing to America’s economy, cybersecurity and national security, only 40 percent of K-12 schools offered a computer science course. Many schools lack the funds and expertise to teach computational skills to their students. The Virtual High School (VHS, Inc.), a non-profit empowering schools with the industry’s best online learning programs, is helping educators address this need through a new certificate program consisting of combinations of courses that allow students to explore different aspects of the computer science field and earn a computing certificate.

 

The intention behind the certificate program is to encourage students to broaden their participation in computer science related courses and to recognize students when they successfully complete three or four semesters of study in this area, “said Kim Spangenberg, Associate Dean of STEM at The Virtual High School.  “With a new, more holistic approach to computer science in mind, we’ve suggested courses for students to create an engaging, relevant and comprehensive pathway that can fuel interest and enthusiasm, while building knowledge and skill.

 

To earn a certificate, which can be added to a college portfolio, students must complete three or four semesters of study in computer science.  VHS has created suggested pathways to help guide students through a series of courses based on their interests.  Students may take three semester-length courses, starting with introductory application based courses like Scratch and Video Game Design, followed by courses in Web Design or Java programming.  Alternatively, they may opt to take an AP track starting with AP Computer Science Principles, which provides a survey of the computer science field while focusing on computational thinking and introductory programming, followed by AP Computer Science A, a college level Java programming course.  Or, students may choose a combination of both AP and elective offerings, based on their specific interests.

 

The Virtual High School computer science certificate program is part of the CSforAll initiative announced in the White HouseFact Sheet during the 2016 Computer Science Education Week last December. In addition to awarding the certificate, VHS will connect students who have completed a pathway with a professional in a computer science or a related field. That professional will act as a mentor, giving the students an opportunity to discuss career options, network, and understand what it’s like to work in the industry.

 

The certificate program complements other recent VHS computer science initiatives. In fall 2016, the organization was one of the first online providers to launch AP® Computer Science Principles, a college-level, College-Board approved computer science course designed for all students in grades 10-12, not just those interested in STEM subjects.

 

VHS is a member of the non-profit CSforAll Consortium whose goal is to expand access to computer science education for all students. The CSforAll Consortium provides a central location for access to computer science education providers, schools, funders and researchers.

About The Virtual High School

The Virtual High School (VHS, Inc.) is an online learning pioneer. Since 1996, the nonprofit organization has set the standard for quality online education. VHS provides middle and high school online courses for students and professional development for educators. The organization also meets the unique educational needs of schools through custom course development, individualized course offerings, and support for blended learning initiatives. VHS design and delivery standards are the model used by the National Education Association in their recommended standards for online learning.  The organization has won numerous awards, including the Stockholm Challenge Award for Global Excellence in Information Technology and is a three-time winner of the United States Distance Learning Association’s (USDLA) award for Excellence in Programming and Excellence in Best Practices. For more information, visit www.VHSlearning.org or call (978) 897-1900.           

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Education Growth Partners Acquires Apex Learning

Leading provider of digital curriculum for secondary education

continues to scale with new investment

 

SEATTLE, WA — May 2, 2017 — Education Growth Partners, a private equity firm dedicated to providing growth capital to proven, high potential education companies, today announced it has acquired Apex Learning. Founded in 1997, Apex Learning partners with schools and districts nationwide to personalize the learning experience for every student. Terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

“We invest in education businesses we believe in, and Apex Learning digital curriculum is proven to increase student achievement,” said Andy Kaplan, managing partner, Education Growth Partners. “We are excited by the opportunity to partner with the company to achieve even greater scale and help more students achieve their potential.”

Apex Learning offers rigorous, standard-based curriculum to meet the needs of all students—from those who are struggling to those who are capable of accelerating. Comprehensive Courses provide a proven option for original credit and credit recovery, and Adaptive Tutorials meet individual student needs for intervention, remediation, and high-stakes exam preparation.

“We are thrilled that our success has attracted Education Growth Partners, and we look forward to working with a team with such extensive experience in education,” said Cheryl Vedoe, CEO, Apex Learning. “Their focus on educational outcomes that change the lives of students in school districts across the country, as well as their prior operating experience, makes them ideal partners. Day-to-day operations will not change and we remain committed to supporting the success of our partner schools and districts.”

About Apex Learning

Schools and districts nationwide implement Apex Learning digital curriculum to personalize the learning experience and support success for all students—from those who are struggling to those capable of accelerating. Proven to increase outcomes, Apex Learning digital curriculum actively engages students in learning, with embedded supports and scaffolds to meet the needs of diverse learners. During the most recent school year, there have been over three million enrollments in Apex Learning Comprehensive Courses and Adaptive Tutorials. Headquartered in Seattle, Apex Learning is accredited by AdvancEd and its courses are approved for National Collegiate Athletic Association eligibility. For more information, visit www.apexlearning.com or call 1.800.453.1454.

About Education Growth Partners 

Education Growth Partners is a private equity firm dedicated to providing growth capital to proven, high potential education companies that offer compelling solutions to unmet needs in education. The education industry expertise and extensive operating experience of Education Growth Partners’ team ensures its companies receive an infusion of highly strategic capital and insight that can accelerate their reach, scale and impact to create long-term value. For more information, visit: www.edgrowth.com

 

 

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Voyager Sopris Learning’s LANGUAGE! Live program makes significant impact on literacy gains for An Achievable Dream Academy students in Virginia

 

DALLAS, TX and NEWPORT NEWS, VA—May 2, 2017When students struggle to read, every aspect of their academic life is affected. Timely intervention is the only way they can catch up to their peers. At An Achievable Dream™ Academy Middle and High School in Newport News, Va., administrators experienced this firsthand, yet discovered a solution—Voyager Sopris Learning’s award-winning literacy curriculum LANGUAGE! Live—that now has those same students meeting and exceeding grade-level reading expectations.

Since implementing LANGUAGE! Live three years ago at the middle school level, the district has experienced significant gains in overall student achievement, and specifically the Standards of Learning (SOL) for Virginia Public Schools test, on which students improved between 13 and 30 points while using the program.

“The students are not only scoring higher on the reading SOL test, but they are scoring higher in ALL curriculums,” said Dr. Lee Vreeland, Vice President of Academics, An Achievable Dream. “LANGUAGE! Live is a comprehensive solution that meets the needs of even our students with intensive challenges and learning gaps. We’re thrilled with the gains students have shown since the implementation in the 2014-15 school year.

“When the program is implemented with fidelity—by which I mean that a large percentage of the content is covered—there is a direct correlation between LANGUAGE! Live and our kids successfully passing the reading SOL.”

LANGUAGE! Live was a perfect fit for the Academy students, she observed, because they are identified individually by their ability and the program kicks off from each of their unique, personalized starting points. “Our teachers are now able to have more of a prescribed curriculum for those students. We can take individualized learning and instruction to a new level,” Dr. Vreeland said.

In addition to meeting and exceeding the state goals, as well as school goals, she notes that student confidence levels are also skyrocketing in the wake of their newfound achievements with LANGUAGE! Live. Moreover, Dr. Vreeland said she will be watching to see if SAT scores increase as a result.

Dr. Amy Runge, Director of Curriculum and Collegiate Services at An Achievable Dream Academy, attributes the reason for optimism in part to the students’ increased capacity for independent learning.

“We have seen a tremendous amount of growth with our current eighth graders who began using LANGUAGE! Live in sixth grade,” Dr. Runge said. “These students are engaged learners now and even the weakest students from the outset are now largely reaching grade level. We’ve used a variety of products over the years, but LANGUAGE! Live is one that has allowed us to achieve the most significant gains with our then-lowest-achieving students. We’ve had a lot of growth, and even theirdesire to be learners has changed and grown. In fact, these students even understand other subjects better because they can read the course materials effectively.”

According to a longtime teacher who helped implement LANGUAGE! Live at NNPS, the literacy curriculum has ended her quest for a resource that reaches all her students while effectively addressing their myriad reading levels.

LANGUAGE! Live is amazing because it allows me to customize each lesson for each student, based on their Lexile level,” said Cassie Prater, a teacher for An Achievable Dream. “The students love the program because they can work at their own pace, earn points, and customize their own avatars, all the while building their reading levels. Every year I use this program, I see tremendous growth in each student. Their self-esteem and confidence regarding reading simply goes through the roof!”

LANGUAGE! Live is built on nearly two decades of research and was developed by Dr. Louisa Moats, an internationally renowned literacy expert; lead author of LETRS® (Language Essentials for Teachers of Reading and Spelling) professional development; author of numerous journal articles, books, and instructional materials; and a past vice president of the International Dyslexia Association.

An Achievable Dream Academy is a unique partnership between Newport News Public Schools, the City of Newport News, and the local business community designed to give at-risk students a better chance to succeed. Students in grades K-12 are offered a quality education in a nurturing environment, as well as the opportunity to develop meaningful relationships with caring adults.

For more information on Voyager Sopris Learning, visit www.voyagersopris.com. For more information on LANGUAGE! Live, visit www.teachlanguagelive.com.

 

 

About Voyager Sopris Learning

Voyager Sopris Learning® is an education partner committed to unlocking the full potential of every teacher and every student. We believe that the best way to meet and exceed standards in education is to address the underlying systems of teaching and learning, and to nurture those systems at their most fundamental levels. Our programs and services are based on research and classroom evidence, ensuring they are easy to implement, teacher friendly and effective. We offer a variety of digital and blended instructional tools, programs, and professional development, all of which are designed to help every teacher deliver nothing short of the highest-quality instruction to every student. Voyager Sopris Learning is a business unit of Cambium Learning® Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: ABCD), based in Dallas, Texas.

 

For more information, visit www.voyagersopris.com, or find us on Facebook or Twitter.

 

About Cambium Learning Group, Inc.

Cambium Learning® Group is a leading educational solutions and services company committed to helping all students reach their full potential. Cambium Learning accomplishes this goal by providing evidence-based solutions and expert professional services to empower educators and raise the achievement levels of all students. The company’s award-winning brands include: Learning A-Z® (www.learninga-z.com), ExploreLearning® (www.explorelearning.com), Kurzweil Education® (www.kurzweiledu.com), and Voyager Sopris Learning®(www.voyagersopris.com), which, together, provide breakthrough technology solutions for students and teachers—including best-in-class intervention and supplemental instructional programs; gold-standard professional development; valid and reliable assessments; and products that enable access to learning for all students.  Cambium Learning Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: ABCD), is based in Dallas, Texas. For more information, visit www.cambiumlearning.com.

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Campus Technology Conference Reveals Dr. Jennifer Golbeck Will Keynote 24th Higher Ed Tech Event

The Director of the Social Intelligence Lab and Associate Professor in the College of Information studies at the University of Maryland, College Park will present securing your systems

 

 

PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla. (May 2, 2017) Campus Technology Conference, a higher education technology event produced by LRP Conferences, LLC, an affiliate of LRP Publications, announced Dr. Jennifer Golbeck will present the Opening Keynote: Privacy and Security in the Age of Algorithmic Spies, on Tuesday, July 17, 2017 at McCormick Place in Chicago. Golbeck, an expert in cybersecurity and human-centered design, will discuss the risks organizations face when humans are not the center of their security plans, as well as the steps needed to make systems safer and accessible.

It is commonly believed a crucial problem in privacy and cybersecurity is people behaving insecurely, but Dr. Golbeck, a world-renowned computer scientist, and pioneer in social data analytics has an opposing standpoint. Dr. Golbeck believes security systems designed without the user in mind increases risks. At the Campus Technology Conference, she will share simple steps higher education professionals can use to make security systems more secure and user-friendly, resulting in lowering risk and improving people’s privacy.

 

“As phishing and other cyber risks continue to increase in sophistication, cybersecurity and data privacy have become essential concerns for chief information officers, security officers, and campus leaders nationwide,” said John Hess, Campus Technology Program Chair.  “I am delighted that Jennifer Golbeck will address the Campus Technology Conference audience on these issues because her research focuses in unique ways on the interactions between humans and technology and the intersection between essential issues of information security and issues of information access that remain central to research, learning, and social engagement.”

A world leader in social media research and science communication, Dr. Golbeck has published more than 100 academic articles and books on social networks and the web. Her research has influenced the government and military. She is a guest host of The Kojo Nnamdi Show on Washington DC’s NPR affiliate WAMU, and is a regular contributor to Slate.

 

In addition to Dr. Golbeck’s Opening Keynote, Campus Technology will include seven thought-provoking workshops and more than 35 sessions, including Making Meaningful Apps in Higher Education, Terraforming the Academic Terrain, Transforming an IT Service Delivery Organization and more! For additional details on the 2017 program, please visit www.CampusTechnologyConferences.com/agenda.html

Registration is currently open for the 24th Annual Campus Technology Conference. Register by May 18, 2017, to save $200.00 off the on-site rate. For additional details and to register, visit www.CampusTechnologyConferences.com or call toll-free 1-800-727-1227.

For media inquiries, please contact Rennette Fortune at 561- 622-6520 or rfortune@lrp.com.

 

 

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About Campus Technology

The Campus Technology Conference brings together thought leaders from the fields of higher education and technology to explore innovative solutions and to develop effective strategies for campus administration, infrastructure, teaching and learning, and more. Conference speakers and attendees occupy a variety of campus leadership positions including chief information officers, vice presidents of technology, and other executives, as well as a variety of academic and technology professionals who are working to manage resources effectively, build seamless networks, and create new educational and enterprise models for the future. Developed in consultation with members of an advisory board of academic and administrative experts from colleges and universities nationwide, each annual conference emphasizes strategic initiatives, technological innovations, emerging trends, hands-on workshop experiences, and opportunities for collaboration and partnership with industry leaders as well as within and among institutions. For additional information about the conference, please visit www.CampusTechnologyConferences.com.

About LRP Conferences, LLC

LRP Conferences, LLC, an affiliate of LRP Publications, produces professional conferences and trade shows annually including: Campus Technology Conference, Future of Education Technology Conference (FETC), Ergonomics Conference & ErgoExpo, Recruiting Trends Conference, and Talent Acquisition Tech Conference.

 

About LRP Publications

LRP Publications, founded in 1977 by Kenneth Kahn, is a broad-based media company serving business and education professionals. Specializing in the fields of education administration, education law, education technology, federal employment, human resources, workers’ compensation and disability, the company publishes hundreds of books, pamphlets, newsletters, videos and online resources. Additionally, LRP publishes two industry-leading magazines: Human Resources Executive® and Risk & Insurance®, plus delivers top-quality training and professional development with eLearning, conferences and tradeshows including: HR Technology Conference & Exposition®, National Institute on Legal Issues of Educating Individuals with Disabilities®, National Workers’ Compensation and Disability Conference® & Expo, among others. For a complete list of LRP products, eCourses and conferences, please visit www.lrp.com.