EdTech 10: Opportunities to Influence, Accelerate and Amplify EdTech

It was a big week in EdTech: the first half wrapped up with record investments and acquisitions, 4.0 Schools began acceptant applications for Launch, their NYC incubator program, and the SXSWedu PanelPicker is open.

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Blended Schools & Tools

Resource Round-up. It’s raining blended learning implementation resources. And that’s great news considering that schools and districts are ready to move from vision to reality this fall. See SETDA’s The Guide to Implementing Digital Learning, The Learning Accelerator’s Communications Planning for Blended Learning: Step-By-Step Guide and Digital Learning Now’s Blended Learning Implementation Guide Version 3.0. TLA and their grantee Relay Graduate School of Education also announced new free online blended learning modules for teachers.  

Ocean State Blends. Fuse RI, an initiative of the Highlander Institute, is bringing high quality teacher training to blended-learning environments in the state. This group is “fostering a new generation of technology leaders in schools, who will lead the blended-learning charge across the state in the years to come.” Personalization and competency-based online instruction guide the professional development. “Training for educators is tailored to meet their needs and abilities,” says Shawn Rubin, director of blended learning at the Highlander Institute and coordinator of Fuse RI.  

Digital Developments

Judging a book by its cover. The Smart Parents: Parenting for Powerful Learning book, built from contributions to our Smart Parents series and on our Huffington Post partner channel, is now available for pre-order! Parents, what are you waiting for? Get your copy here

Dollars & Deals

Wheeling and Dealing. Mergers and acquisitions and venture funding in EdTech continue following a record-setting number in the first half. Michele Molnar shared trends in Education Week. And speaking of Education Week, they acquired Learning Matters TV. Atlanta-based mobile coding platform Crescerance Received Funding from BIP Capital.  

Stem Gems

Social butterfly. CK-12 Foundation, nonprofit creators of free STEM content and tools for K-12 students, has partnered with Google Classroom on a new social component for educators. How it works: A teacher using CK-12 content, whether it’s an online textbook, practice assignment or animated simulation, may then assign work or share a portion with the class. Here’s 5 ways to use Google Docs in your classroom.

Higher, Deeper, Further, Faster Learning

Mad skills.  NYU partnered with 2U for new health degrees. New from Coursera is the Global Skills Initiative that’s aiming to partner companies with postsecondary institutions to collaborate on new online courses and content that map to in-demand skills and jobs.

Seal of approval. Online learning provider Connections Education was awarded renewed accreditation from AdvancED, with a quality ‘seal of approval’ for its “culture and commitment focused on student learning (that) permeates throughout the Connections Education organization,” according to the national accreditation commission. This is further proof of the K-12 virtual school provider creating powerful experiences for learners.

Policy Pieces

Gem State shines. HB 110 was recently signed into law by Idaho Gov. C. L. “Butch” Otter and went into effect in July. The mastery-based education law will be implemented in several steps. Idahoan policy makers and implementers should check out The Shift from Cohorts to Competency as they navigate the process.  

Teachers & Tech-ers

It’s all a mirage. New from TNTP is The Mirage, a report that challenges the common EdLeader perception that we know what works when it comes to teacher development, if only we could apply knowledge widely. Teachers deserve professional learning opportunities that echo the type of personalized learning that’s recommended for students, because when it comes to teachers talent matters (listen why).  

The Big “D”

Privacy and personalization. Edmodo’s CEO Vibhu Mittal and co-author of BLENDED Michael Horn joined CMRubinWorld to talk about learning in a world driven by innovative online EdTech tools.

For more EdTech 10’s, check out:

Getting Smart Staff

The Getting Smart Staff believes in learning out loud and always being an advocate for things that we are excited about. As a result, we write a lot. Do you have a story we should cover? Email [email protected]

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