The iNACOL Blended and Online Learning Symposium (#iNACOL14) has brought together 2,500 experts and educational leaders who are exploring the leading edge of next generation learning in K-12 education from across the United States and around the world. This annual conference is the industry’s leading event for K-12 online, blended and competency-based learning. Here is day one in photos.

Innovations in Blended Learning: Creating a Student-Centered Learning Environment. As a featured session participants took a look at the new ways that technology is being used to personalize learning by sharing best-practices for creating a student-centered learning environment. Tom, Principal Dawn L. Smith at RUSD and Elliot Sanchez, CEO and Founder at mSchool, shared resources for blending learning and data driven instruction. Following the session, Tom and Mary Ryerse signed copies of Smart Cities in DreamBox Learning‘s booth on the expo floor.

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So You’ve Passed Course Access, Now What? Lessons from Leading States.
 Course Access programs continue to spread as eight states have passed or considered legislation since 2012. Legislators, SEAs, course providers, districts, and parents all have an important role in ensuring that Course Access empowers students and strengthens schools. This session provided the opportunity for conference attendees to learn from leaders including Neil Campbell, Policy Director for Personalized and Blended Learning at ExcelinEd, Jamey Fitzpatrick, President of MVU and Dave Lefkowith, Deputy Superintendent at the Louisiana Department of Education.

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Smart Cities: Sparking an Urban Education Revolution.
Everybody needs to learn more-and innovative new tools and schools are making that possible. Innovations occur in ecosystems-and we can create those learning environments in every classroom and every city. Tom and Mary walked the audience through an interactive discussions about scaling and implementing blended learning and forming city-wide partnerships.

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Building a Better Blend. This interactive session moderated by Caroline Vander Ark, brought together top blended learning experts, Jim Cuningham, Jeff Kerscher, Chin Song, to share what reading and writing in a blended learning program should look like and what common missteps to avoid during implementation.

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Developing an Innovation Mindset. Tom discussed how individuals, teams and schools adopt mindsets through effort, initiative and collaboration. The session provided resources and focused on the framework of reading, writing, visiting, and thinking to develop an innovation mindset.

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For more on iNACOL ’14, check out:

Tom is a director at iNACOL. The Foundation for Excellence in Education and DreamBox Learning are Getting Smart Advocacy Partners.

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