District CIO

UMass appoints CIO

The University of Massachusetts-Amherst appointed Julie Buehler as vice chancellor of information services and strategy and chief information officer (CIO). Prior to this appointment, Buehler held several executive-level positions with the University of Rochester, including most recently, deputy CIO.

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Using online learning properly

The American K12 school system is in a state of crisis. When compared to other industrialized nations, our children average lower in language skills, mathematics, and science in a world market that has become dependent on those skills. Cash-strapped schools are unable to hire enough qualified instructors to provide traditional public education. MOOCs can help turn this Titanic around.

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Ohio tech academy now open to grades seven and eight

Project-based learning school Muskingum Valley New Tech Academy, part of Zanesville (Ohio) High School, will open up to grades seven and eight for the next school year after being open only to grades nine to 11 this past year.

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Michigan district gets $1.1M grant

The River Valley School District (Three Oaks, Mich.) has received $1.1 million, the largest grant ever awarded by local investment group The Pokagon Fund. The money will be used to improve security and enhance technology at the district’s three buildings.

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New Albany (Ohio) district investing $347K in tech upgrades

The New Albany-Plain school board will spend $347,000 to upgrade technology for K8 classrooms, replacing equipment that is eight to 10 years old. Among other initiatives, the new equipment will help facilitate 10 blended learning courses the school offers.

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Virginia high schools go online

Charlottesville and Albemarle public schools, both in Charlottesville, Va., are ramping up investments in online courses, partly in response to a new state mandate requiring at least one online course for graduation. The district administrators also believe it’s the best way to prepare students for the challenges of college and careers.

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Summer school: NYU teaches high school girls security tech

For the past 10 years, New York University's Polytechnic Institute has run a competition called Cyber Security Awareness Week (CSAW). Students compete to find flaws in various websites' security measures, and exploit them to gain access to the sensitive information stored within. The National Security Agency and other government agencies have been known to recruit talent from among the competitors.

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Hybrid PD supported by online ‘communities of practice’

With the many professional educational technology resources available to the K12 community today, it’s imperative that we transition from episodic and ineffective models to an interactive environment that is digitally-based and connected 24/7.

Clarksville (Ind.) district awaiting decision on high-tech high school

Kim Knott, superintendent of Clarksville (Ind.) Community Schools, is hoping to have an answer soon from the board on whether they can move forward with the project-based and problem-focused high school learning model.

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Hilton Head district begins charting 5-year plan

Administrators, teachers and other steering committee and board of ed members say the district has successfully increased the percentage of students reading at or above grade level and helped close achievement gaps in math scores on state standardized tests. However, looking toward the next five years, they feel a rising dropout rate and increasing demand for tech skills will require more digital learning and customized student programs.

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