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CoSN NEWS AND EVENTS

CTO Clinics start this week
CoSN
We're excited to kick off our 2013 slate of CTO Clinics this Thursday in Massachusetts. Join us for a unique professional development opportunity in Massachusetts, Texas, Florida or Missouri. Remember, all CoSN member districts receive one free registration. Non-members are also welcome to attend.

CoSN delivers its professional development CTO clinics in conjunction with its state chapters to allow leaders to network and learn about emerging technologies on a local level. You're welcome to attend any clinic.

Join us on: May 16 in Massachusetts, June 19-20 in Texas, June 27 in Florida, or July 18-19 in Missouri. Or join the Indiana CTO Council for a conference on May 23.
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Rich Kaestner, CoSN project director, on determining the value of investment
CoSN
We know that education technology is crucial, but how do we truly assess its value and worth? This issue is at the heart of CoSN's SmartIT initiative. Rich Kaestner, Project Director, writes: "When employing technology in schools to enhance learning, districts can't use typical business models such as ROI to determine the value of proposed or implemented technology initiatives. K-12 education is not alone in experiencing difficulties with determining the Value of Investment resulting from the use of technology. In a New York Times article, Measuring the Benefits of Tech Tools, Eduardo Porter contends that this is a cross-industry dilemma, using journalism and social networking examples where enhanced quality, convenience, and productivity are not captured in worker productivity calculations, such as G.D.P. Unless we're willing to set up a test group of students and a separate control group for a specific technology initiative and track them for the next 50 years, it is difficult if not impossible to measure the effects of student learning technology initiative in terms of dollars. However, with some thought and a structured approach, we can determine and articulate just what we hope to accomplish with specific technology initiatives. CoSN provides a methodology and tools (www.cosn.org/voi) to help school leaders to perform this cost-benefit assessment."
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CoSN's eNews Poll:

Which of the following is your top ed tech priority this school year?
  1. Assessment Readiness
  2. Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) programs
  3. Broadband Access
  4. Cost Effectiveness/Smart Budgeting
  5. Cyber security
  6. Data-Driven Decision Making
  7. Other
Click here to give CoSN your answer.



SHOWCASE
  ePals Global Community

ePals is the world's largest network of K-12 classrooms, enabling students and teachers to safely connect and collaborate with classrooms in more than 200 countries and territories. Educators can join ePals to find collaborative projects, join discussions in community forums, and search thousands of classroom profiles to engage with others in authentic exchanges. MORE
 


ED TECH HEADLINES


Students want more mobile devices in classroom
InformationWeek
When it comes to the influx of mobile devices into K-12 classrooms, you'll find both proponents and opponents among educators and parents. But ask kids what they think, and there's no debate: Laptops, smartphones and tablets are the future, they say. The Student Mobile Device Survey reveals that students almost unanimously believe mobile technology will change education and make learning more fun. The survey, which tallied the responses of 2,350 U.S. students, was conducted for learning company Pearson by Harris Interactive.
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Technology problems persist as states administer online tests
The Associated Press via The Washington Post
School districts across several states are rescheduling high-stakes tests that judge student proficiency and even determine teachers' pay because of technical problems involving the test administrators' computer systems. Thousands of students in Indiana, Kentucky, Minnesota and Oklahoma have been kicked offline while taking tests in recent weeks, postponing the testing schools planned for months and raising concerns about whether the glitches will affect scores.
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CoSN and AASA publish professional development toolkit for educational leaders
THE Journal
The Consortium for School Networking and the American Association of School Administrators have released the latest addition to the collaborative Closing the Gap: Turning Data into Action project. The "Closing the Gap Professional Development Toolkit" is a step-by-step curricular plan and set of professional resources intended to help teachers and administrators use educational data to improve instruction and student achievement.
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A failing grade for broadband
New America via Slate Magazine
The Internet is becoming as critical to student success as textbooks and blackboards — in many parts of the country, even basic homework assignments require access to the Web. This reflects not only a greater variety of educational resources available online to students, but also the rising importance of digital literacy as a fundamental skill. But even as companies create innovative new educational technologies — like cloud-based literacy programs, Skype-based tutors and virtual math games — many policymakers and entrepreneurs are overlooking a critical factor that stands in the way of widespread adoption of these tools: adequate and universal broadband infrastructure.
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The new marshmallow test: Resisting the temptations of the Web while learning
Slate via The Hechinger Report
Living rooms, dens, kitchens, even bedrooms: Investigators followed students into the spaces where homework gets done. Pens poised over their "study observation forms," the observers watched intently as the students — in middle school, high school and college, 263 in all — opened their books and turned on their computers. For a quarter of an hour, the investigators from the lab of Larry Rosen, a psychology professor at California State University-Dominguez Hills, marked down once a minute what the students were doing as they studied.
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TRENDING ARTICLES
Missed last week's issue? See which articles your colleagues read most.

    Schools' education technology budgets shrink as demand grows (eSchool News)
FCC commissioner calls for overhaul of E-rate to help schools (Education Week)
The iPad in schools: Is it a solution or a problem? (Edudemic)
Thinking about Chromebooks? Here's everything you need to know first (THE Journal)
Framing the school technology dream (Education Week)

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


Kentucky Department of Education moves to paper tests
The Associated Press via San Francisco Chronicle
After problems with online testing, the Kentucky Department of Education is moving to pencil-and-paper tests. The Lexington Herald-Leader reports the education department sent an email to testing coordinators saying that ACT Inc. was suspending the online system. ACT previously said its testing system had been overloaded by the number of students taking the test but that more capacity had been added and testing could resume.
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iPads soar in popularity among K-12 schools
eSchool News
Desktop and laptop PCs still dominate in schools, but iPads already are the second most widely used ed-tech devices in K-12 classrooms just three years after their introduction in 2010, according to an informal survey of educators by the ed-tech company Netop. What's more, the survey reveals a dramatic shift in spending toward iPads next year, with 57 percent of educators saying their schools plan to invest in iPads for the 2013-2014 school year.
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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.
 


Leashing the company tablets
By Peter Martini
Has your organization jumped into the mobile revolution yet? Did you know by the end of 2013 mobile users will outpace desktop users? Going mobile does improve productivity, but first let's talk about how going mobile will affect your security and compliance requirements. Once you bring mobile devices into your organization's technology family, you must still manage that inventory, and you can't just allow those tablets to roam around without fences protecting the users and your data.
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Industry Pulse: Does your organization allow employees to use mobile devices?
ANSWER NOW


Can computers really grade essay tests?
The Washington Post
Can computers really grade essay tests? The National Council of Teachers of English say "no," even if there is new software that says "yes." New software described in this New York Times story allows teachers to leave essay grading to the computer. It was developed by EdX, the nonprofit organization that was founded jointly by Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and that will give the software to other schools for free. The story says that the software "uses artificial intelligence to grade student essays and short written answers."
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FEATURED ARTICLE
TRENDING ARTICLE
MOST POPULAR ARTICLE
A failing grade for broadband
New America via Slate Magazine
The Internet is becoming as critical to student success as textbooks and blackboards — in many parts of the country, even basic homework assignments require access to the Web.

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Schools' education technology budgets shrink as demand grows
eSchool News
While educators and parents continue to report a growing need for technology use in education and learning, schools are struggling to meet today's needs and tomorrow's expectations, according to "From Chalkboards to Tablets: The Digital Conversion of the K-12 Classroom," the latest report from the Speak Up 2012 survey.

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FCC commissioner calls for overhaul of E-rate to help schools
Education Week
A member of the Federal Communications Commission offered a detailed and far-reaching case for overhauling the E-rate program in order to ensure Web access for students and schools amid rising demands for online access.

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Minimal standards required for technology in classrooms
Wausau Daily Herald
Change is sweeping like a tornado through the landscape of education, and most educators agree the force giving the twister much of its power is the use of technology in the classroom. The overwhelming wealth of information that can be found on the Internet, hand-held devices such as the iPad and recent innovations such as cloud computing are allowing teachers to help students learn in creative and innovative ways that most could only have imagined a decade ago.
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School studies electronic textbooks
Chicago Tribune
More students in Chicago's Highland Park and Deerfield high schools are using electronic textbooks because students and their families are already using several electronic devices — and school officials are studying the best way to provide adequate infrastructure for users. As the District 113 Board of Education examines the burgeoning use of Web-based textbooks, it has also stressed the issue of equal access for all students.
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States' online testing problems raise Common Core concerns
Education Week
Widespread technical failures and interruptions of recent online testing in a number of states have shaken the confidence of educators and policymakers in high-tech assessment methods and raised serious concerns about schools' technological readiness for the coming Common Core online tests. The glitches arose as many districts in the 46 states that have signed on to the Common Core State Standards are trying to ramp up their technological infrastructure to prepare for the requirement that students take online assessments starting in 2014-2015.
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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.
 


Why a school is going beyond printed newsletters
EdTech Magazine
Like many schools across the country, my school uses printed newsletters to share student learning with families on a weekly basis. Parents have responded positively to these communications for years, but are we reaching everyone? Probably not. Social media has already proved to be a powerful tool for communication and collaboration, and there is evidence to support its use in the K-12 environment.
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Teachers: Ed-tech boosts students' abilities, self-sufficiency
eSchool News
Technology's potential to aid teaching and learning when properly implemented and used is widely agreed upon, and teachers say that ed-tech has the potential to both positively and negatively impact students' learning. A new infographic from Teacher Portal chronicles the emergence of ed-tech in today's K-12 classrooms. Teachers said that ed-tech tools offer numerous advantages and can help boost student learning and engagement.
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Survey: Most parents support mobile learning devices
eClassroom News
A majority of parents overwhelmingly think that mobile apps, mobile content and technology in the classroom promote positive learning habits and yield benefits, according to a new survey released on May 2. "Living and Learning with Mobile Devices: What Parents Think About Mobile Devices for Early Childhood and K-12 Learning," from Grunwald Associates, the Learning First Alliance, and underwritten by AT&T, surveyed 2,392 parents who have 4,164 children between the ages of 3-18.
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CoSN eNews
Colby Horton, Vice President of Publishing, 469.420.2601
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Hailey Sasser, Senior Education Editor, 469.420.2638  
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