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CoSN NEWS AND EVENTS

Save the date — CoSN webinar on cyber-security on April 23
CoSN
CoSN continues its 2012–2013 Webinar Series with a webinar entitled Securing Your Network Against Cyber Attacks, Phishing and Scams. Join us on April 23 from 1-2 p.m. EDT to learn about strategies and best practices to strengthen your information security and to get ideas for communicating the importance of security to the school community. Schools and school districts have varying degrees of expertise in network security depending upon their sizes, financial situations, and perceived importance of cyber-security, so this webinar will cover a wide range of situations.

Denise Atkinson-Shorey, Project Director of CoSN's new Designing Education Networks initiative, will moderate the discussion between Harold Rowe (associate superintendent of Cypress-Fairbanks Independent School District in Texas) and Aaron Barnett (Director of IT at Moreno Valley Unified School District in California). Please click here to register for the event. The CoSN Webinar Series is a free benefit for CoSN members. If you would like more information about CoSN membership, please visit our site.
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2013 CTO Clinics begin soon
CoSN
Planning is underway for our 2013 slate of CTO Clinics. CTO Clinics are in-depth professional development events for ed tech leaders, delivered in conjunction with CoSN's state chapters. The clinics allow attendees to engage with emerging technology trends and network with local peers. You can register now for the Massachusetts CTO Clinic, and registration for the Texas CTO Clinic is opening shortly. Stay tuned for more information, and more upcoming clinics.
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ED TECH HEADLINES


Digitally aided education, using the students' own electronic gear
The New York Times
Educators and policymakers continue to debate whether computers are a good teaching tool. But a growing number of schools are adopting a new, even more controversial approach: asking students to bring their own smartphones, tablets, laptops and even their video game players to class. Officials at the schools say the students' own devices are the simplest way to use a new generation of learning apps that can, for example, teach them math, test them with quizzes and enable them to share and comment on each other's essays.
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PRODUCT SHOWCASE
  For Schools Who Do

The Lenovo ThinkPad X131e laptop, powered by 3rd Generation Intel Core i3 processor is the ideal student laptop. With a strengthened frame, stronger hinges and ports, and the Active Protection System, the ThinkPad X131e is designed to keep up with students in virtually any environment. Learn more at www.lenovo.com/educationseries
 


Congressman George Miller addresses the importance of digital inclusion at CoSN conference
THE Journal
Despite tough economic circumstances and sequestration, federal investment in education technology "can't wait," according to United States Representative George Miller, who addressed education leaders at the CoSN 2013 conference in San Diego, CA. Miller, senior Democrat on the House Committee on Education and the Workforce, has introduced legislation that would bring back funding specifically targeted toward technology in education, funding that has dried up with the end of Enhancing Education Through Technology and the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.
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Project24 launches Massive Online Open Course for Educators
Digital Learning Transition
The DLT MOOC-Ed will help you understand the potential of digital learning, assess progress and set future goals for your school or district, and plan how you and your colleagues will proceed to achieve those goals. It is designed for school and district leaders involved in planning and implementing K-12 digital learning initiatives. We recommend that members of school or district planning teams participate together, but individual educators are also welcome.
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Digital learning MOOC now open to school leaders
eSchool News
Enrollment opens for a first-of-its-kind Massive Online Open Course for Educators that will help school district leaders make the shift to digital instruction in their schools. This free online course is offered by the Alliance for Excellent Education in partnership with the Friday Institute for Educational Innovation at North Carolina State University.
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PBS Learning Media launches Teacher Core program
PBS
PBS LearningMedia, a free digital media content portal for classrooms, announces the formation of its PBS LearningMedia Teacher Core, a select group of 28 teachers chosen for their dedication to the advancement of digital learning in education. The PBS LearningMedia Teacher Core will utilize the experience, expertise and passion of its members to reignite classroom learning and engage fellow educators using digital tools in classrooms nationwide.
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TRENDING ARTICLES
Missed last week's issue? See which articles your colleagues read most.

    CoSN 2013: Districts transition to digital-rich learning environments (EdTech Magazine)
Schools shift from textbooks to tablets (The Associated Press via Yahoo News)
K-12 student database jazzes tech startups, spooks parents (Reuters)
7 facts about K-12 education technology leaders (eSchool News)
Districts place high priority on 1-to-1 computing (Education Week)

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


6 best practices for modernizing and upgrading a school district's IT
EdTech Magazine
People always ask me how we modernized the extensive IT infrastructure for the San Francisco Unified School District, the seventh largest school district in California, with more than 55,000 students. It's important to start by acknowledging — and communicating to all stakeholders — that the process will take time. Think of IT modernization as a journey to be completed in several phases, not as a quick fix.
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FEATURED ARTICLE
TRENDING ARTICLE
MOST POPULAR ARTICLE
Digitally aided education, using the students' own electronic gear
The New York Times
Educators and policymakers continue to debate whether computers are a good teaching tool. But a growing number of schools are adopting a new, even more controversial approach: asking students to bring their own smartphones, tablets, laptops and even their video game players to class.

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K-12 student database jazzes tech startups, spooks parents
Reuters
An education technology conference in Austin, Texas, will clang with bells and whistles as startups eagerly show off their latest wares.

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Equal Internet access is a K-12 must-have
Education Week
The days when spiral notebooks, No. 2 pencils and a backpack full of textbooks served as the mainstays of the American classroom are rapidly giving way to a new school environment.

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What K-12 IT leaders really think
EdTech Magazine
Want to know how school districts are using technology? Ask their IT leaders. That's precisely what the Consortium for School Networking did last fall when it commissioned MCH Strategic Data to conduct its first annual K–12 IT Leadership Survey. The purpose of the survey was to investigate how education leaders are leveraging technology to foster engaging learning environments, how these efforts have changed over time and how the choices made today will shape tomorrow.
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Educators share technology struggles: From tablets to Twitter
InformationWeek
Should teachers use social media? What are the best practices for flipped classrooms? How are educators in other countries using computers and networks? These were but a few of the 400 session topics at the 68th annual meeting of the ASCD in Chicago, where technology's impact on teachers, students and institutions dominated much of the discussion. This year, the nonprofit's three-day conference and exhibit drew more than 10,000 educators and administrators, as well as hundreds of vendors.
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  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.
 


100 million 'offline' Americans to get cheap broadband, digital literacy skills
eSchool News
Three in 10 Americans are offline, citing both cost and digital skill barriers — but thanks to Everyone On, a new nonprofit initiative, more than 100 million offline Americans, including homes with children, will have cheap broadband access and training in digital literacy skills. According to a new national survey on the current state of home broadband adoption released by the national nonprofit Connected Nation, broadband adoption is on the rise — increasing from 65 percent in 2011 to 70 percent in 2012, but that still leaves almost 70 million Americans (30 percent) offline at home.
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Teachers, students, digital games: What's the right mix?
MindShift
When St. Louis fifth-grade teacher Jenny Kavanaugh teaches history, she uses her laptop to look at a map, or to give kids a virtual tour of the historical landmarks they're studying. "Students can interact with history in very cool ways online," she said. But when it's time for math, she puts the computer away. Even though Kavanaugh thinks technology is a great tool to enhance and deepen certain lessons, for drill and practice of key concepts in class, she finds one-on-one practice to be much more effective than its technological equivalent — digital practice games.
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Digital learning now! grades states on education technology policies
Education Week
While only six states — Utah, Florida, Minnesota, Georgia, Virginia and Kansas — earned an A or B on the 2012 edition of the Digital Learning Report Card, digital learning continued to be a hot topic in legislatures across the country, says the ed-tech advocacy group Digital Learning Now!, which wrote the report. States were graded based on 39 metrics that correlate to the organization's 10 essential elements for high-quality digital learning. The elements were crafted during a 2010 digital learning council co-chaired by former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and former West Virginia Gov. Bob Wise, which lead to the formation of the organization shortly afterwards. Digital Learning Now! is currently led by John Bailey, from the Foundation for Excellence in Education.
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  CoSN CEO discusses access gap on CNN/Comcast Newsmakers
Click the image to see CoSN CEO Keith Krueger's appearance on CNN Headline News/Comcast Newsmakers. Keith discussed the importance of closing the technology access gap, a crucial component of CoSN's strategic plan.
 


How schools benefit from FTE licensing
EdTech Magazine
With the stroke of a pen, officials in California's Merced Union High School District began saving thousands of dollars annually on software. They did it through full-time-equivalent licensing, which shifts the licensing of applications from a device or user-based model to a headcount-based subscription one. Typically, such arrangements give all district-owned computers access to the latest versions of applications from companies such as Microsoft and Adobe. Contracts are structured around annual employment or student enrollment numbers, with payments for the coming year adjusted based on a year-end headcount.
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Making digital libraries work, with or without BYOD
THE Journal
Three years ago, when the nation's K-12 schools started thinking seriously about creating digital libraries, the Mesquite Independent School District in Texas purchased several Sony eReaders, loaded them with books, and circulated them to students. It didn't take long for the district to see the flaws in that initial attempt.
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Humans fight over robo-readers
Inside Higher Ed
Les Perelman, the former director of writing at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, known for taking on the writing test of SAT, is challenging a well-publicized study that claims machines can grade writing exams about as well as humans. During a presentation to what is likely to be a friendly crowd at the Conference on College Composition and Communication convention in Las Vegas, Perelman plans to talk about his "critique" of the 2012 paper by Mark D. Shermis, the dean of the college of education at the University of Akron. Shermis and co-author Ben Hamner, a data scientist, found automated essay scoring was capable of producing scores similar to human scores. The new flashpoint in the machine grading dispute comes as the vast majority of states are planning to introduce new high-stakes tests for K-12 students with writing sections slated to be graded by machines.
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