eSchool News

eSchool News
eSchool News covers the intersection of technology and innovation in education.
  • State law takes aim at cyberbullying
    A new Pennsylvania law focused on cyberbullying comes with $2,500 fine and possible jail time for offenders.
  • Flocabulary debuts student assessments, reporting tools
    Flocabulary has launched a new suite of features to help teachers, schools and districts assess student knowledge and diagnose needs for differentiation and intervention. In addition to the educational hip-hop videos and interactive activities, each instructional unit now features an auto-graded formative assessment for students. Updated features include a new dashboard for teachers to assign units and analyze student results to inform their instruction. "Our goal with these new features is to allow our customers to use the platform to not only demonstrate student achievement but also to diagnose knowledge gaps and differentiate instruction," said Flocabulary co-founder and CEO Alex Rappaport. Using the program’s new features, teachers will have the ability to create classes or student groups on their user dashboards and assign Flocabulary instructional units to students directly. The dashboard features a series of reports that allow teachers to review quiz results at the individual student level and at the classroom level, and make data-informed decisions about planning further instruction. The assessment and reporting features are available to all schools and districts that subscribe to Flocabulary’s online program. “The enhanced teacher dashboard affords teachers the ability to not only differentiate their instruction, but also to better monitor student progress,” said Carl Bucciantini, technology integrator at Auburn School Department in Auburn, Maine. “With the increased reliance on data being used to inform instruction, these tools are a great addition to any teacher's toolbox.” To support this roll out of student-facing features, Flocabulary has updated its privacy policy and signed the Student Privacy Pledge, introduced by The Future of Privacy Forum (FPF) and The Software & Information Industry Association (SIIA). “With more data in our system to drive student results reporting, we wanted to be on the forefront of student privacy and security,” says Flocabulary Product Director Aliza Aufrichtig. "Flocabulary has set the bar for engaging curricular content and now we’re in a position to lead the industry in the right direction when it comes to respecting the sanctity of student data.”
  • How to prepare your school for the Internet of Things onslaught
    A checklist for IT as everything from watches to thermostats goes online.
  • New high school focuses on leadership and career readiness
    Michigan students looking for flexible learning opportunities will soon be able to earn their high school diploma online while developing into agents of change in their local communities. Through diverse community and business partnerships, the Heroic Leadership Academy in Flint, Mich., will combine comprehensive supports in education and leadership training for at-risk students. The academy, which will open with the 2015-16 school year, is designed to help students ages 15-19 harness their existing qualities and become perpetuators of change in their communities, or heroic leaders. GEARup2LEAD, a nonprofit organization dedicated to fostering leadership in local communities, established the academy with education support from Graduation Alliance, which offers career planning and alternative education to help students prepare for employment opportunities. The academy will take a multifaceted approach to leadership training, with students gaining diverse experiences as both mentees and mentors. Each student will be matched with mentors from local universities, as well as community mentors from nearby businesses and organizations who will assist in personalized career readiness. Concurrently, students will have the opportunity to demonstrate their leadership skills, serving as mentors and positive role models for at-risk children at the Whaley Children’s Center. “We want our students to feel what it’s like to be a heroic leader,” said Adam Hartley, executive director of GEARup2LEAD. “Our core mission is to help students achieve a high school diploma and draw out the best characteristics that are already within them, ultimately benefiting our communities and state.” Students from around the state are eligible to enroll in the program through Michigan’s Schools of Choice program. After students complete all state and local graduation requirements through the program, they will receive a high school diploma from Swartz Creek Community Schools. Enrolled students will earn their high school credits through Graduation Alliance’s nationally accredited online curriculum. In addition to offering more than 200 courses, Graduation Alliance provides a 360-degree, localized support network that helps students overcome past educational and social-emotional challenges.
  • Texas districts enlist Skyward for data integration
    Two Texas institutions, Mesquite Independent School District and Village Tech Schools, have enlisted Skyward, a K-12 school administrative software provider, to unify school management and data processes. Both districts identified customer service as the primary factor in selecting Skyward, along with student data security, parent engagement and ease-of-use for teachers. A large suburban school district located just east of Dallas, Mesquite ISD selected the Student Management Suite from Skyward to answer its data integration needs. Mesquite ISD searched for a management system that stressed data accuracy and security for its 40,000 students, while also providing a user-friendly platform with cost-cutting data storage capabilities. Village Tech Schools, an open-enrollment charter school in its third year, selected the Skyward Student Management and School Business Suites. Skyward will partner with the school to streamline digital scheduling, as students are allowed to move freely between classes. Village Tech Schools is looking forward to Family Access for parent communication, Gradebook to simplify the grading process and the Business Suite to manage operations. "We need a solution that meets our short-term and long-term needs," said Jeremy Jameson, chief technology officer at Village Tech Schools. "Skyward brings everything under one roof; it's a one-stop shop for grading, scheduling, communicating with parents and managing business operations such as payroll and inventory. Having the option to bring the student and business systems together will help our district move forward, so we don't have to constantly keep cross-referencing data." Mesquite ISD will implement the Skyward Student Management Suite in fall of 2016, while Village Tech Schools implemented the Student Management Suite last spring and is currently implementing the School Business Suite.
A triumphant 6th re-union PDF Print E-mail
Written by Administrator   
Tuesday, 12 August 2008 10:00

July 29, 2009

The desire of power in excess caused the angels to fall; the desire of knowledge in excess caused man to fall; but in charity there is no excess, neither can angel or man come in danger by it. Author:Francis Bacon Source: Essay—OnGoodness

When our members, friends, and supporters flew from all over North America during this critical economic downturn it shows the love, the passion, and dedication that they have to support our association and what it stands for. We all have good time with friends and family. More so we all were happy when it was announced that the big project was finished and is giving full services. What is so enjoyable other than see the seed we saw six years a go bearing fruit and reach for harvest in our six reunions. We have seen via video the beautiful library filled and equipped with hard cover books. We have seen the children who six years a go were fighting for a sitting space now relaxed and have books as they want in the spacious and elegant library. What else is satisfying other than hearing our little brothers and sisters, our parents, friends, and alike appreciating the marvelous work of each and every one of us put into this. Guys don’t take it easy and do not assume you haven’t done your share. we are changing a generation that is lagging behind. We are bringing the young generation who is still using 19th century technology and outdated books in this 21st century. We are creating a new generation with new ideas, talents, creativity, and what have you. Therefore, you have every reason to be proud.

In general, our members in most cases were and are very optimistic. This year even though the board was not expecting to see many members attending the re-union due to the sluggish economy, many managed to make it. We all were amazed by the number of attendees from different States. It appears to us and to all members that people can do anything and everything if there is a will. We know now more than anytime else that our members are determined to do anything for the quality of education, for bright future of the new generation, and to eradicated backwardness ones and for all.

Those of us who flew have a good time and enjoyed ourselves with friends and alike and contributed some to our beloved association. Those who choose to be with us in spirit also were with us in spirit and have sent their fair share of contribution. Is not this something! We don’t know what it is but there is something unique about this association. We all stand as one, support each other, listen to each other, work together as hand in gloves, bring information, share information, no pointing fingers, always think positive and do what is best to change the life of others. Amazing!

Our DC folks are truly great in their hospitality. If it was not for their money and time scarifies we may not enjoyed our time since driving from one area to the other is so nightmarish. However, by the effort of the father of our association- HBT and others, we have a pleasant week. The Haileselassie Belay household took a week of vacation from their job to facilitate our Stay. The young Robel Haileselassie and his beloved mother Tsige did not have a break until we all depart. Every year, every month, every day, every minute and second we all fall in love with this very kind and big heart family. May God give them longevity so that our ADI will be served better and we all have a good vacation with them year after year? CUDOS HAILE BELAY TEKLU and Family! If we start naming people we may forgot some hard working individuals and committee members so we will stop here but would like to thank all the women who feed us for five days with the best food ever TIHLO.

Financial report: - Members discussed the financial situation of the association. A report was presented by the secretary and each and every one was given the opportunity to look into the financial statement of the association and the books for that matter. In addition, the amount of money collected in the past six years, the amount of funds wired for library construction, student teacher award, books and computer purchases, and power installation were explained.

What was new this year? The establishment of the youth network (AYN) is new. Our association had established Awlaelo Youth Network. Some may ask why another association or network? Well, you know our youngsters who are born or grow up in the states and those of us oldies do not speak the same language nor do we see things in the same fashion. The youth have their way of doing things, their way of supporting others, their methods of fund raising and communication, hence, the need to organize them. They are organized now and eventually they can replace us, they can contribute on their best skills, and they can reach out to youth in Ethiopia using the current technology and medium of communication-the internet supported by their facebook social network. Thanks to Asefa Abay, Selm G and others for taking this project. Our brothers and sisters need your support. Your skills, your intellect is highly need back in ADI and it is hour sincere believe that you will do a good service. Make a call to all university students in Ethiopia and else where to join you. God willing the library will have a broadband and you will have many participants from there too.

So now we can say that we Deqi Awlaelo all have faith. We are very faithful to our God, faithful to our ADI and our people. Our actions, our deeds, our practice tells that all. With love and passion we supported all six high schools. We are opening the eyes of many for better life, better education which will lead to a better society. We are happy to be part of such dedicated group. We are individuals working and striving not to be known by anyone except the beneficiaries. We believe there is no excess charity. We want to share what we have with our people back home.

Board Election: - It was the board’s desire this year to retire from their leading positions. But it did not happen. The current board members had served six years and are still at service. Our members spoken! They don’t want to see the board leave or replaced by new faces. They say “don’t fix it if it is not broken”. However, some new faces were added so that they can be trained some leadership skills from the veterans so that coming year they can assume full responsibility. Since the members say no to the request of electing new board, the board members had no choice except accepting decision and will of the members.

Investment group: - Another new happening this year is the establishment of a committee to study about investment opportunities and some other things that will benefit members. This 7 member committee will study some investment opportunities in Tigray and here in the Diaspora to benefit its members. It will also look into some sort of group insurance for members, scholarship availability for our children, retirement conditions and many more. Over all, this is an interesting idea.

Member driven workshops: -Last year ASAA had drafted a five year plan to support the quality of education in all the high schools in KILTE AWLAELO. Based on that plan the first workshop was given by Engda Hagos (PhD) from Emory University School of Medicine. Dr. Engada had given a workshop for 8 teachers and 25 top students in the field of science. He had motivated the students and teachers to do their best and to aim high. The school as well as Dr. Engda was happy with the outcome. Our association is also grateful to have such dedicated professionals who on their spare time teach and guide our brothers and sisters who are very thirsty for education. Thanks Doc for all the help. It is decided that workshops will continue and all professional who flew to ADI for personal case will give seminars, conferences, and workshops to students, teachers, and the other interested groups.

Finally we were happy by the support from our Ethiopian brothers in the Metropolis of the three States (DC, MD, VA). We could not do it without your support. Again thanks. With your support we managed to collect close to $29,000 before expenses. This is not bad. The country is in deep recession and yet we managed to collect such amount. This tells us how people are dedicated to support the needy children of Tigray to excel in education.

Where will ASAA gather next year? It was decided by our Seattle branch that they will host the 7th re-union. We are all happy by the decision of the branch to host it. We know they are not alone. The Seattle Tigrean community is one of the strongest and the best one in North America. We firmly believe Seattle community will support us in full gear. Hope to see you all in Seattle Washington in July 2010.

Abraha W Kahssay for ASAA

Last Updated on Friday, 09 July 2010 03:21