Virtual School Meanderings

April 18, 2014

Plugged In | 04.18.14 | (powered by iNACOL)

A final word from the neo-liberals…

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PLUGGED IN  04.18.14
powered by iNACOL…


Online and Classroom Learning Blended in New Metro Area School
KSTP | St. Paul, MN
Nearly 14,000 Minnesota students go to school virtually from the comforts of their own home using online curriculum. But a new school, set to open this fall, believes independent learning often leaves students missing out on a part of growing up. The school (read)
Libraries Seek High-Speed Broadband
New York Times
The federal E-Rate program has been a boon for schools and public libraries across the country, helping them acquire Internet access and telecommunications products at affordable or vastly discounted rates. But the sleek new computers, laptops and (read)
Choices and Decisions: Top Down or Bottom Up?
Blend My Learning
In late January I wrote a post about how to scale or grow pilot programs into something more impactful and possibly more sustainable. Since January, I have been working closely with our Director of Technology, our VP of Teaching and Learning, our Development (read)
Data Privacy Policies from Major Ed-Tech Players Draw Scrutiny
Government Technology
Growing public concern about student-data privacy is prompting fresh scrutiny of the ways technology vendors handle children’s educational information – and opening the gates for a flood of new questions and worries from advocates and school officials. Take (read)
Blended Learning Energizes Washington
Getting Smart
We spent the day at the BlendEd Learning & Leadership Symposium in our home state of Washington (#PSESDBlendEd). Puget Sound Educational Service District (PSESD) collaborated with Pacific Lutheran University to host a one day blended learning (read)
Will It Play in Emporia?
When we talk about the future of higher education in the United States, let’s please focus our attention on where most higher ed happens. It’s not in Cambridge or South Bend or Ann Arbor. It’s in Kirksville, Mo.; Emporia, Kan.; Lafayette, La.; and Bridgewater (read)
The One Room Schoolhouse Goes High Tech
In the heart of the tech boom, where new innovations always hold the promise of the perfect solution, a new private school in San Francisco is prototyping its first class this year. Armed with a team of engineers ready to build the necessary tech tools, the (read)
Why the World’s Larget Provider of Online Courses Thinks It’s the Answer to Getting Ahead in the New Economy
Fast Company
Two years out of college, Andy was working for a think tank in Washington, D.C. He had graduated from Amherst College with a political science degree and had also completed a prestigious Fulbright research fellowship. He was smart and had strong qualitative (read)
Big Data for Poor Students
Project Syndicate
Countries need skilled and talented people to generate the innovations that underpin long-term economic growth. This is as true in developed as it is in developing economies. But it will not happen without investment in education and training. If we are to end poverty (read)
Palm Beach County Upgrades Wi-Fi To Support Digital Learning
THE Journal
Palm Beach County School District has implemented a new wireless network across all 185 schools and 13 other facilities to support 1-to-1 learning initiatives and the state’s mandated switch to e-textbooks. The State of Florida requires all K-12 schools to (read)
The rise of big data brings tremendous possibilities and frightening perils
Washington Post | Washington, DC
Debates are raging about whether big data still holds the promise that was expected or whether it was just a big bust. The failure of the much-hyped Google Flu Trends to accurately predict peak flu levels since August 2011 has heightened the concerns. (read)
What You Can Learn About Adaptability from Sylvan Learning
Fast Company
When W. Berry Fowler decided to give up his formal teaching career to open a tutoring business in 1979, he had no idea he was at the forefront of a revolution. His single location center at the Sylvan Hill Medical Center in Portland, Ore., eventually grew into ( read)
Getting Smart Releases Assessing Deeper Learning: A Survey of Performance Assessment and Mastery Tracking Tools Report
Press Release
Getting Smart, with support from the Deeper Learning Student Assessment Initiative (DLSAI), comprised of Envision Education, the Asia Society, ConnectEd, and New Tech Network, released the “Assessing Deeper Learning: A Survey of Performance (read)
BloomBoard Catapults Education Reform in Arkansas
Press Release
With the Teacher Excellence and Support System and the Leader Excellence and Development System already in place, Arkansas begins its next push to improve its educational initiatives for the 2014-15 school year. Arkansas is collaborating with (read)

ICYMI: Top 3 stories from Thursday’s Plugged In… (read)

2014 iNACOL Blended and Online Learning Symposium


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Pass It Along: Support Broadband in Schools!

From the neo-liberals…

Take One Minute…

Tell the FCC how important adequate broadband connectivity is to the future success of America’s schools.  Please also “click forward” and send this request to friends and colleagues who may agree!

Digital learning’s potential to improve learning will not be realized without robust and reliable internet connection in schools and classrooms. We have an opportunity to tell policymakers at the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) how important broadband access is to realizing this potential for all students. Please sign our petition TODAY and ask your friends and colleagues to do the same!  The more people who show their support, the stronger our message will be.

All submissions received by noon on Friday, April 18th will be included. It only takes a minute to add your support.

It will make a very big difference!

Sara Hall
Alliance for Excellent Education

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Alliance for Excellent Education · 1201 Connecticut Avenue · Washington, DC 20036 · USA

Improve Access to Online Learning

A final item – I hope – from Wednesday’s inbox…

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Learn how to improve
access to Online learning

2014 Accessibility Workshops


Are your online courses ADA compliant? What steps can you take to make online learning more accessible?

Accessibility is a key component to online teaching and learning. Sloan-C recognizes this and has made a commitment to provide the knowledge and tools for educators to ensure their online courses are fully accessible.

The following programs will help you identify types of disabilities, form strategies to improve courses and develop accomodations for learners of all kinds.

Best Regards,

Sandra Coswatte
• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •
Sandra Coswatte | Director | Sloan-C Institute of Learning
The Sloan Consortium
Individuals, Institutions and Organizations Committed to Quality Online Education

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The Sloan Consortium, Inc. – PO Box 1238 – Newburyport, MA 01950-8238

Spring Into What’s New With EdITLib!

Yet another item from Wednesday’s inbox…


APRIL 2014

Spring Has Sprung

With Our



We’ve added fresh new features 

and functionality:
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  • Collection tool improved for creating your reading lists!
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Your resource for the latest multimedia, peer-reviewed, internationally recognized research covering all aspects of Educational Technology & E-Learning. 
EdITLib is a non-profit development of GlobalU, sponsored by AACE.
Enjoy unlimited access to: 
Includes 100,000+ articles and multimedia resources from 200,000+ international authors. 

With EdITLib, You Can:
> Gain immediate access to 100,000+ articles from 25+ years of peer-reviewed publications!

> Keep current on the latest research & developments

> Build Collections of articles by topic

> Receive alerts when new papers match your interests

> Create Course Reading Packs for classroom use

New Content Partners for
April 2014:
EdITLib highlights and archives journals 
& proceedings 
from publishers worldwide. 

International Council for Open and Distance Education – ICDE:

IEEE Technical Committee on Learning Technology:
Expanding your 
access to the latest 
Ed. Tech & E-Learning Research with: 
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[EDEN-News] EDEN Newsflash – Special issue, April 2014

Another item from Wednesday’s inbox…

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April, 2014

Projects, practices, showcases

LeHo Focus Group – Call for participation
The international network for the Home and Hospital Education through ICT

LeHo project partners are organizing Focus Group sessions with medical staff, hospital and home tuition teachers aimed at:

  • outlining the key educational factors for children who are unable to attend school due to health related issues;
  • exploring ICT-based solutions designed to help enable these children improve their access to education.

Contact details for the following network country Focus Groups are as follows:

Focus groups will occur April-May 2014. The final date will be set by each network partner.

For more information about Focus Group sessions and LeHo please visit our website:

Improve employability and enhance European competitiveness through the acquisition of language and cultural competences in Portuguese

EMPORT is soon launching a Portuguese language course that is based on research results of available multimedia language courses and the needs analysis of small and medium enterprises dealing with Portuguese speaking countries. For details about the background, results, related events, and the course, read the EMPORT e-bulletins (also available in PT) or visit the EMPORT website.


VISIR keeps stakeholders alert: e-Learning micro-innovation matters!

The VISIR partners believe that successful mainstreaming of ICT-enhanced and of Open Education strongly depends on uptake of grassroots practices. Innovators, experts and stakeholders gathered together in the Committee of the Regions, Brussels, on 25-26 March in Brussels to reflect upon a way forward in order to make education systems more receptive towards grassroots innovation. Barriers and success factors for the transformation of new ideas into mainstream practices – based on the results of the 3rd VISIR Consultations – were discussed and strategies that can facilitate scalability of innovation were proposed.

Read press release about the event at the VISIR website for more details.


Learning Analytics Data Sharing – i-KNOW14 Workshop

During the i-Know conference co-located with EC-TEL in Graz, Austria, September 2014 the LACE project is organizing a workshop on Learning Analytics Date Sharing. Submissions should address at least one of the following aspects, as applied to data sharing for learning analytics or educational data mining:

  • Scope – what kind of data is it most beneficial to share?
  • Technical architectures for data sharing
  • Interoperability and standards
  • Ethical aspects of data sharing
  • Sustainability of collaborative initiatives or shared infrastructure
  • Business models for data-driven services

More information:

Piloting of the STAY IN e-Guidance Platform

STAY IN has developed and is currently testing an open-source web-based platform to help students to avoid drop out. The platform does not only aim to give students support to find information tackle practical problems, but also to provide real counselling service. The STAY IN platform is available for piloting since the 1st February in three piloting countries – Italy, Hungary and Spain. More details about STAY IN are available on the website.


For more information about the projects EDEN is involved in, please visit the EDEN website.

You receive this newsletter as member of the EDEN e-mail list. To read about the EDEN Membership Services, please visit this link. The archive of previous Newsflashes and Project Newsletters can be found at the Networks of Academics and Professionals - NAP Members’ Area.

EDEN – European Distance and e-Learning Network Secretariat
Tel: +36 1 4631628

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