10 Conversations at COSN

The COSN conference is underway in Washington DC.  School district edtech directors find themselves in a very dynamic situation these days.  Here’s 10 of session and hallway conversation topics from yesterday:

  1. Doing 1:1 right: lessons from Mooresville and Australia.
  1. Blended learning school models: scalable solutions that work better and don’t cost more.
  1. Funding the transition to digital learning: how state and district budgets need to change to provide access to every student and implement blended school models.
  1. Bring-Your-Own-Device (BYOD) to School: there is growing interest in BYOD but some tablet for all advocates don’t think it’s worth the effort.
  1. Financing Student Achievement: Weighted, Portable, and Performance-Based Funding
  1. Managing competency-based learning: How achievement recognition systems will help schools manage matriculation when everyone moves at their own pace
  1. Getting ready for online assessment: should the testing consortia be more specific about device requirements or should they try to accommodate a variety of solutions (multiple browsers, tablets, etc).
  1. Instant feedback: getting your school, district, and state ready for big data.
  1. All the smart kids want to work in education–that’s great for startups, but how to existing edtech companies and districts take advantage of the talent influx?
  1. International models: a growing number of countries (e.g., Portugal, Korea, Turkey) are moving faster than most of these United States on the shift to digital learning.

Tom Vander Ark

Tom Vander Ark is the CEO of Getting Smart. He has written or co-authored more than 50 books and papers including Getting Smart, Smart Cities, Smart Parents, Better Together, The Power of Place and Difference Making. He served as a public school superintendent and the first Executive Director of Education for the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

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