Here’s how districts stand out from the crowd
Every Friday, I’ll recap some of the most interesting and thought-provoking news developments that occurred over the week.
I can’t fit all of this week's news stories here, though, so feel free to visit eSchoolNews.com and read up on other news you may have missed.
District leaders have a lot on their plate, but it's more important than ever to ensure that technology is supporting a school district's learning goals. Everyone knows that technology used simply because it is technology won't yield success. These districts are taking new and innovative approaches to how technology can advance learning goals, improve instruction, and make students feel safe and secure.
Read on for more:
3 schools where tech is enhancing engagement
With technology at the forefront of education, classrooms are ever-evolving, and educators have begun to adapt and change their teaching approach to better suit 21st century classrooms filled with 21st century learners.
Most districts are doing nothing about the homework gap; a few are making a big difference
The growing ubiquity of internet access and pervasive use of online information has changed the learning landscape forever. Students continue to benefit from enhanced connectivity throughout the formal school day thanks to a $1.5 billion increase in E-rate funding over the last 18 months. However, demand and expectations for learning outside of the school day are on the rise — and there are still many students struggling to complete homework online.
The digital-first district where OER meets iPads
Teachers and students at one district are replacing print with digital. By and large, it’s working.
North Dakota schools step up response to cyberbullying
Schools in N.D. are stepping up digital citizenship and vigilance to combat social media bullying.
itslearning to host ISTE roundtable series on education practices
Sessions will allow participants to discuss specific topics in depth amongst themselves and with education leaders, including world-renowned ed-tech expert Alan November Educators point to the ability to learn from colleagues, in addition to experts, as essential for enhancing their abilities. itslearning, developer of the itslearning learning management system, is helping attendees at the 2016
‘District Click’ helps districts control forms, approval processes
Three years after launching its flagship platform that delivers digital permission slips and forms for K-12 schools, Permission Click has announced a major new release aimed at districts.
District Click powers centralized curation of parent-facing and internal form templates, dissemination of these templates to schools via the Permission Click platform, customized workflows for approvals, multi-site management, and reporting.
“It’s clear that making it easier to collect permission slips and forms from parents at a school level is only part of the story,” said Chris Johnson, the co-founder and CEO of Permission Click. “Districts often have fancy policies and approval processes they’ve spent years crafting centrally, but that fall flat at the school level in the wild.”
District Click was inspired by customers’ practical needs, Johnson said. “We realized how much time we spend with district administration shedding light on the processes their school staff actually used day to day, and to be candid, they are commonly shocked to learn how differently waivers and forms are used from one school to the next.”
Iain Riffel, the assistant superintendent of programs at Pembina Trails School Division in Winnipeg, is amongst the first group of districts to implement the platform. “We have robust policies and processes in our division for things like Student Activities and Permissions, and administering these policies across dozens of schools is a sizeable effort,” Riffel said. “District Click automates the process of sharing forms and policies, approval workflows, and visibility of active events consistently across our schools. We’re looking forward to rolling this out across our division in September.”
Johnson pointed out that day-to-day use of Permission Click by the company’s existing user base will remain largely unchanged, adding that, “School staff in districts rolling out District Click will notice incremental features including pre-populated district templates, automated workflow for approvals, and more, while parents enjoy the same trusted experience.”
5 ways to engage students in real coding this summer (hint: it’s not by playing Minecraft)
A coding expert shares how to get students truly invested in computer science that goes beyond drag and drop.
Contest asks libraries to share “My Library Pic”
Libraries are often the go-to technology centers in local communities and on campuses. To better tell that story, Gale, a part of Cengage Learning, is calling all libraries to participate in the My Library Pic contest. All types of libraries, big or small, and all types of photographers (professional or amateur) are invited to share a photo showing how their library integrates and embraces technology.
The contest is open June 1-June 30. Five winners will be randomly selected from each of four categories for a total of 20 prizes. Each winner will receive a $150 American Express gift card.
All submissions will become part of Gale’s digital mosaic at the American Library Association (ALA) conference and will be pieced together, in real-time, with small pictures collaged into a larger image.
Libraries who want to participate must submit a photo online at My Library Pic Photo Contest in one of these four categories:
•Candid Tech – Are your users actively and interestingly using technology in the classroom, library or on the go? Show us how.
•Learning Incubator – From early literacy programs to business start-up workshops to study groups, we know that people work best in groups. Teach us your ways.
•From the Stacks – Whether a research paper, entrance exam, practice test, or plain old reading, how do your users read and research in the digital age?
•Digital Ingenuity– There’s always an easier, better way of doing something. Show us how you used technology to make life a little bit easier for you or your users.
Libraries and their patrons or students are encouraged to share their image on social media using the hashtag #MyLibraryPic and tagging @galecengage. Stop by the Gale booth (#1503) at the ALA conference in Orlando, June 24-27.