MassCUE & M.A.S.S. 2009 Technology Conference

by Jean Tower

MassCUE & M.A.S.S. 2009 Technology Conference
Pre-conference: October 27 : : Conference October 28 & 29
Tackling 21st Century Learning

T he school year hasn’t even ended and I am already looking forward to the Fall 2009 Technology Conference (October 27, 28 & 29). There is a lot NEW and EXCITING about the conference this year.

MassCUE is partnering with the Massachusetts Association of School Superintendents (M.A.S.S. ) to host the conference together. Prior to this year, each organization has held its own technology conference. The significance of this partnership is more than just two organizations working together. MassCUE and M.A.S.S. collaborating on the technology conference means that technology using educators, Instructional Technology Specialists, Technology Directors, Superintendents and other school administrators will be at the same table. Truly systemic and effective use of technology in teaching and learning requires the partnership of all district stakeholders. Bringing the constituencies together for this professional development conference represents an important step in the right direction. And what might the results be of district teams working together to evaluate the vendors and the sessions? Might there be better and more collaborative decision-making? More strategic use of technology to meet teaching and learning goals? What else?
(METAA will also be helping to organize and will have many presenters at the conference.)

Gillette Stadium !
Even when a conference location has served a group well, it is a good idea to shake things up and move to a new location after a few years. It is even more important to relocate in order to better serve the entire state and to improve conference amenities and technology access. So this year the MassCUE Board of Directors has been working for many months on securing Gillette Stadium as the conference location for 2009 and 2010. This project has included the input and effort of the MassCUE conference committee, and M.A.S.S. Gillette Stadium is an exciting venue that has much to offer. The exhibit area, lunch, and keynotes addresses will be on the clubhouse level and the breakout sessions are in the luxury suites, one level up. There is plenty of parking (!) and lots of restaurants and shops that make the area a destination location.

Lots of people are hard at work to make this conference one of the best ever. In the works are:

a Cyber café, hands-on pre-conference options, hands-on classroom sessions during the conference, and more!

Tony Wagner is the keynote speaker on October 28th. He is the co-director of the Change Leadership Group at Harvard and author of The Global Achievement Gap: Why Even Our Best Schools Don’t Teach the New Survival Skills Our Children Need –And What We Can Do About It . Tony is an in-demand speaker and is widely published. I read the book and find that his idea about the seven survival skills students need is supported nicely by the framework that the Consortium for 21st Century Skills has published. Conference participants are in for a rousing keynote about 21st century learning. I look forward to hearing Dr. Wagner address Massachusetts educators.

Dr. Donald Leu will present the keynote address on October 29th with a group of his graduate students from the University of Connecticut. Professor Leu is the director of The New Literacies Research Lab at the University of Connecticut. The lab conducts research on the new reading comprehension and learning skills required by the Internet and other emerging information and communication technologies. He is often called upon to speak on Internet literacy. Dr. Leu and his co-presenters will deliver a powerful message about 21st century literacy.

I hope to see you at Gillette in October. Please consider presenting a break-out session to share your expertise and to tell your success stories.

Presenter RFP

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