Go Deeper with Digital Learning at CoSN

Go Deeper with Digital Learning at CoSN


While the edtech glitterati nurse their hangovers from SXSWedu next week, Chief Technology Officers, Instructional Technology Directors and Superintendents will meet at the 17th annual Consortium for School Networking’s (CoSN) conference. This year, CoSN will bring together 900 district tech leaders to Atlanta to talk shop over mobile technology, personalized learning, data and privacy, and the new kid on the edtech buzzword block: Deeper Learning.

The concept, developed by the Hewlett Foundation to describe the skills and student outcomes achieved from non-traditional school models, will be under the spotlight during CoSN’s opening keynote delivered by Michael Fullan. Fullan is a Canadian ed researcher, former Dean of the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education and recipient of the Order of Canada (that’s just cool!). Fullan could be called the Canadian Diane Ravitch, focused less on politics and more on culture, change management and pedagogy.

His keynote, ‘Rethinking Pedagogy for Deeper Learning,’ should be both provocative and refreshing for CoSN veterans and newbies alike. Deeper Learning is a non-traditional topic for a tech conference, and a heady one, too --more about the type of students schools want to develop than the tools used to get them there.

Fullan will also be joined on stage to tackle this non-techy, pedagogical topic by district heavyweights: Jhone Ebert (Chief of Innovation and Productivity Officer at Clark County School District) and Dr. Terry Grier (Superintendent at Houston Independent School District).

If the opening chat leaves you wanting more on Deeper Learning, grab audience member and presenter Chris Dede for a deeper chat. Dede is a learning technology professor at Harvard University who has written extensively on Deeper Learning and the role technology will play to scale and support it.

Once the opening keynote and reception on Monday night have your brain spinning, here are a few familiar topics to dive back into for the rest of the week.

Professional Development

EdSurge will host a session at 9:15 am on Tuesday on ‘Disrupting Professional Development.’ We will dive into a discussion on the landscape of tools available, discuss what’s missing and what it will take to shake up PD.

Data and Privacy

Trust and data should be synonymous. That’s why we are excited about this workshop from Jules Polonetsky Executive Director at the Future of Privacy Forum and Bob Moore at RJM Strategies on ‘Education Data and Student Privacy--The Trust Imperative.’ This session takes place at 8:00 am on Monday. Only the early birds will get the worm on this one.

Diving in deeper to the logistics of data and privacy, Mike Lorion from Common Sense Media will moderate a panel on ‘Protecting Student Privacy in Digital Tools for Learning’ at 8 am on Tuesday. Leaders from Houston ISD, Clark County School District will join Kecia Ray, President of the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) to talk about the how to read through data privacy policies, the role districts can play to support teachers, how schools can inform parents of privacy issues. Mobile Learning

Want to learn all about how mega-district Houston Independent School District went 1:1 in 11 pilot schools. Chief Academic Officer, Daniel Gohl and Chief Information Technology Officer, Lenny Schad will layout their process and share their execution strategy. The sharing begins at 9:15 am on Tuesday.

Also, don’t miss Dede and Julie Evans, CEO of Project Tomorrow present on ‘The Eight Essentials for Success in Mobile Learning.’ They will share their eight keys to making the most out of mobile learning. The action starts at 9:15 on Tuesday.

Personalized Learning

What would an edtech conference be like these days without a session on personalized learning? Learn more from the Lewisville Independent School District technology team about how they built a new learning model that gives their students choice over content and time, through individual course playlists. But you’ll have to stick around till Wednesday for this one, which starts at 9:14 am.

Of course, EdSurge will be in Hotlanta to bring you all the news and all the side-room conversations that we can get out of CoSN this year. Stay tuned to find out what these edtech leaders are really talking about.

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