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From the Editor

Anne Wujcik, EditorAn interesting report was released last week. "Technology-Enabled Personalized Learning: Findings and Recommendations to Accelerate Implementation" summarizes the findings from last year's Technology-Enabled Personalized Learning (TEPL) Summit which was hosted by the Friday Institute for Educational Innovation at NC State University in collaboration with Digital Promise, the Software & Information Industry Association (SIIA), and the Michigan Association of Intermediate School Administrators (MAISA). Leaders from the education industry, associations and nonprofits, and university and K-12 education attended, working together to identified potential solutions and models that might help scale the implementation of personalized learning through technology. The report includes their recommendations.

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Voice from the Field

BLEgroupSmaller Districts Comprise the Majority of Market for Technology and Have Distinct Needs

Through our vetted assessment and planning work we have identified the challenges and potential solutions needed to support smaller school systems. This article outlines five concrete components critical to the success of smaller districts, recognizing that the major factors of the transition from print to digitally-delivered education are organizational, including managed change, policies, funding, sustainability, and systematic implementation.

  1. Knowledge of Availability and Quality of Digital Educational Materials
  2. Lack of Integrated Management Systems
  3. Need for IT Organizations That Address Both Instruction and Technology
  4. Inadequate Effective Professional Development for Teachers
  5. Effective Procurement Processes for Digital Materials Linked to a Cost-Effective Cloud Repository System for Materials

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She Snoops for Scoops: The Personal Side of the EdNET Community

Vicki Smith BighamHappy Friday, friends. Thanks for all of the messages and posts wondering about the status of things in Houston this week. It has been unbelievable and so tragic for many in my hometown and others around our state, but all of my family and friends have been spared any serious damage. We have been very blessed! And I thank you for your concern. We continue to hold close all those who continue to suffer from various types of loss from the storms. Now, I am pleased as always to bring you this week's scoops....

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ASCD Global Policy Recommendations Focus on Reduced Testing Reliance, Whole Child Support

ASCD, a global community dedicated to excellence in learning, teaching, and leading, released its first Global Policy Agenda, which makes recommendations to promote the success of students, educators, schools, and communities worldwide. "The needs to promote a whole child education and to reduce the overreliance on standardized testing are just two of many priorities that span all education systems across the globe," said David Griffith, ASCD director of public policy. "ASCD is committed to supporting policies that enable growth and success for all students, and we believe the introduction of this Global Policy Agenda lays out a comprehensive vision for international educators to support student achievement."

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PARCC States Vote To Shorten Test Time and Simplify Test Administration

The PARCC Governing Board, made up of the state education commissioners and superintendents, voted Wednesday to consolidate the two PARCC testing windows into one and to reduce total test time by about 90 minutes beginning in the 2015-16 school year. The vote came in response to school district and teacher feedback during the first year of testing and a careful review of the test design. The changes will improve and simplify test administration for schools, teachers and students, without diminishing the goal of the assessment-to ensure every student in every school is being taught what they need to know order to be successful in the next school year and, ultimately, in college or career.

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