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Register for COSN15!
The biggest professional development of the year is now just a month away. Register now for the 2015 CoSN Annual Conference, which will be held in Atlanta from March 16-19 and spend three jam-packed days networking with ed tech leaders from around the country and the world. We're also excited to announce the release of our mobile app, which contains full session information and will help you plot your schedule before you even get to Atlanta. Visit or search COSN in your device's app store.
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4 ways to boost your Wi-Fi performance
EdTech Magazine
When network performance comes to mind, people usually think about throughput. However, with Wi-Fi often being the primary or only means of network access for users, IT managers must consider several other dimensions of wireless performance. IT leaders evaluating ongoing operations or upgrading wireless infrastructure should maximize reliability and productivity while minimizing total cost of ownership and operational expenses.
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5 overlooked money-saving ideas for education technology
eSchool News
As the chief management analyst for the Fiscal Crisis & Management Assistance Team in Bakersfield, Calif., Michelle Plumbtree has gotten up close and personal with a number of educational technology professionals and departments — many of which were struggling to balance classroom technology and infrastructure needs against limited institutional budgets. And she says ed tech departments should consider rethinking a few things as technology becomes a larger part of school budgets.
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5 things every school app should include
Elearning Industry
We live in a world where our mobile devices are extensions of who we are. And when it comes to our smartphones and tablets, most of us find ourselves using apps in order to communicate, consume information and more. Schools, from elementary to university, are starting to get in on the app trend, giving students, teachers, parents and administrators an easier way to stay in touch. As Linda Erdos, spokesperson for Arlington, Virginia, public schools, says, apps are "the next generation" of communication between parents, students and schools.
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Backpacks that pack power for mobile devices
The New York Times
With people juggling multiple digital devices that constantly need charging, backpack manufacturers have sensed a market opportunity. Some new backpacks are specifically designed not only to protect our smartphones, tablets, laptops, headphones and game players, but also to recharge them and track their whereabouts. For those who need power as well as protection, Tylt's $170 Energi Plus Backpack includes a 10,400 mAh battery, which can charge three devices simultaneously. Though it can hold up to a 15.5-inch laptop, it can't charge one. The battery is intended for smartphones and tablets only.
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Schools test impact of blending technology, longer school days
Education Week
Students at Grant Beacon Middle School in Denver spend much of the school day in a blended learning scenario, using Chromebooks to access digital curricula and working face to face with their teachers. Students also have a longer school day — an extra hour that allows for more enrichment and electives. A new guide for educators says the pairing of blended learning and an expanded school day — much like what is happening at Grant Beacon — hits the educational sweet spot, providing opportunities for better teacher collaboration, personalization of education and student engagement.
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Looking for similar articles? Search here, keyword TECH.

  Consortium for School Networking
From Vision to Action: The 21st Century Teaching and Learning Plan. Designed to help educators understand and implement 21st century teaching and learning, the course includes readings, videos, presentations, questions designed to provide immediate feedback, application exercises and customizable tools that can be downloaded.

Send in the e-Cadets! Making kids responsible for e-Safety
Terry Freedman, a contributor for Tech&Learning, writes: "I came across the e-Cadets scheme recently, and mentioned it in the special e-safety edition of Digital Education. I thought it sounded very interesting. With schools looking for more sustainable e-Safety solutions I caught up with the co-founder of the innovative e-Cadet scheme, Henry Platten, to find out how to create a lasting e-Safety legacy in your school."
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9 IT best practices for BYOD districts
THE Journal
Allowing students to bring their own devices into the classroom is a relatively new concept to many U.S. school districts. BYOD can help personalize learning by letting students work on devices that they are very familiar with, but it also creates some key challenges for the IT professionals who have to balance the need for computing power with the resources provided by their districts. Here, a handful of district technology heads discuss their BYOD best practices and suggest how others might adopt them.
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Missed last week's issue? See which articles your colleagues read most.

    Is Facebook the new school Web page? (EdTech Magazine)
Why technology must be invisible during ed tech roll outs (eSchool News)
Top 10 IT issues, 2015: Inflection point (EDUCAUSE)
Tips for hiring the best tech staff (District Administration Magazine)
Bowling with bumper rails: iPad restrictions in schools (Tech&Learning)

Don't be left behind. Click here to see what else you missed.

FCC's plan to reclassify Internet has big K-12 impact
eSchool News
FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler is proposing clear, sustainable, enforceable rules to preserve and protect the open Internet as a place for innovation and free expression. According to an FCC Fact Sheet the common sense proposal would replace, strengthen, and supplement FCC rules struck down by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit more than one year ago.
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Uncovering security flaws in digital education products for schoolchildren
The New York Times
When Tony Porterfield's two sons came home from elementary school with an assignment to use a reading assessment site called, he was curious, as a parent, to see how it worked. As a software engineer, he was also curious about the site's data security practices. And he was dismayed to discover that the site not only was unencrypted, but also stored passwords in plain text — security weaknesses that could potentially have allowed unauthorized users to gain access to details like students' names, voice recordings or skill levels. He alerted the site to his concerns. More than a year later, the vulnerabilities remain.
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