ISTE18 Day 1: Sunday, June 24

ISTE18 Day 1: Preconference (Sunday, June 24)

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ISTE18 Day 1

ISTE is one of the world's largest and robust educational technology conferences, and we wanted to learn and connect with educators and leaders who are passionate about technology in education.

As it is our first time as attendees, we wanted to share what we've learned, our experience, as well as what we thought about the conference— especially to those who were not able to make it (#NOTATISTE).

The following is a session that we thought was really worth sharing:


Increasing Digital Equity Through District Vendor Partnerships in Technology Implementation

By Luke Bilger, Karen Moore, and Jason Smith

This session, led by School District of Philadelphia, SMART Technologies, and Visual Sound, talks about key points required to build a solid partnership between vendors and districts/schools to implement technology into classrooms successfully.

According to the panelists, the lack of access to technology is usually not the problem, but rather poor implementation— coaching, PD, and support.

To address this, vendors and school districts need new language and expectations in terms of what they want in a Request for Proposal (RFP), which is an open-bid for suppliers of a solution type to apply for a contract of purchase. This new language needs to look like a partnership that stresses more PD and coaching.

Main Takeaways:
1. Vendors should include a ongoing PD. The end goal should be the school's success, not sales.
2. Districts/schools should look for vendors that include extensive PD.
3. Learn about the district's goals and see if your product is aligned to it.
4. Communicate to principals what proficiency using purchased technology looks like.
5. Send experienced/ex-teachers as PD coaches. Educators do not want to hear from a sales person that doesn't know what teaching is like.

What is ISTE?

ISTE is an educational technology conference that helps educators learn and use technology better. The organization provides educational technology resources and support to educators and education leaders. They've also developed a set of standards for learning and teaching with technology— ISTE Standards. Learn more about them here.

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