EdNET Insight - Voice from the Industry http://www.ednetinsight.com en-us http://blogs.law.harvard.edu/tech/rss Central by Imulus (http://imulus.com) info@ednetinsight.com Transitioning From Consumer to Education: Beyond Price and Packaging http://www.ednetinsight.com/news-alerts/voice-from-the-industry/transitioning-from-consumer-to-education--beyond-price-and-packaging.html With industry reports indicating that investment in ed tech companies hit $1.87 billion in 2014, it’s no surprise that many entrepreneurs and companies in the consumer sector are considering entering the education market or have already begun making inroads. To put your company on the path to success in education, you’ll need to know the differences between the consumer and education markets that extend beyond pricing and packaging. <p><ul> <li>Provide solutions; don’t just sell products</li> <li>Move product and purpose under one roof</li> <li>Relationships are paramount</li> <li>Philanthropy matters</li> </ul></p> ]]> Friday, May 22, 2015 http://www.ednetinsight.com/news-alerts/voice-from-the-industry/transitioning-from-consumer-to-education--beyond-price-and-packaging.html STEM-Driven School Reform http://www.ednetinsight.com/news-alerts/voice-from-the-industry/stem-driven-school-reform.html <div>&nbsp;</div> <p><ul> <li>Effective educational reform requires that we apply STEM to the design of curriculum and assessment and to student and teacher management.</li> <li>By using STEM plus Arts (STEAM) to create new learning cultures—curriculum, assessment, and management—we can begin to create a rational, democratic, rather than traditional top-down, foundation for school reform.</li> <li>Within a decade we will exceed our most idealistic wishes for school reform if we apply STEAM to in-classroom curriculum design and management.</li> </ul></p> ]]> Friday, May 15, 2015 http://www.ednetinsight.com/news-alerts/voice-from-the-industry/stem-driven-school-reform.html Three Easy Steps for Maximizing Your Marketing ROI http://www.ednetinsight.com/news-alerts/voice-from-the-industry/three-easy-steps-for-maximizing-your-marketing-roi.html For many of us, participating in a marketing planning conversation often begins with the same question, “How and where should we focus our limited marketing budget?” What this question really seems to be asking is, “What’s the magic bullet that would boost our market awareness and increase sales?” The reality is there isn’t one! However, there are ways to make sure you are strategically setting the stage to build brand voice and establish a presence as a trusted partner with K-12 administrators. Let’s explore how you can transition your marketing strategies from the typical promotion (and hoping for the best) to a targeted focus on content, which will engage your audience while allowing you to position your solution. ]]> Friday, May 01, 2015 http://www.ednetinsight.com/news-alerts/voice-from-the-industry/three-easy-steps-for-maximizing-your-marketing-roi.html FakedIn: How Much of Your Professional Social Network Are Frauds? http://www.ednetinsight.com/news-alerts/voice-from-the-industry/fakedin--how-much-of-your-professional-social-network-are-frauds-.html Some people may get put off when I reply to unknown LinkedIn connection requests by asking, “How do we know each other?” <p>I guess you could call me the Nev Schulman of the business community. Catfish don’t just run their games in the social space but in the business world as well. But here, those that play the game do so more than just to play with people’s emotions. They do so to take people’s hard-earned money.</p> <p>So what can you do to prevent yourself from being prey to LinkedIn predators? Just follow the “CASH” approach to professional networking:</p> <div><ul> <li>Connect Responsibly</li> <li>Ask</li> <li>Scan</li> <li>Hide</li> </ul></div> ]]> Friday, April 24, 2015 http://www.ednetinsight.com/news-alerts/voice-from-the-industry/fakedin--how-much-of-your-professional-social-network-are-frauds-.html Lean Startup: Why It Matters to K-12 Education http://www.ednetinsight.com/news-alerts/voice-from-the-industry/lean-startup--why-it-matters-to-k-12-education.html The Lean Startup movement is a highly successful approach to building a company or product from the ground up. Its principles are founded in concepts that have been used to learn, to implement technology, and to improve the quality of a solution. In fact, everyone begins as a Lean Startup entrepreneur when learning to walk, so why don’t more companies adopt this approach to implementing technological solutions? Ed tech companies that follow a Lean Startup cycle tend to be more successful, because it forces them to work closely with their education customers. <div>The following points represent four key reasons why the Lean Startup approach is important:</div> <div>&nbsp</div> <div><ol> <li>It lets us start with “why”, with our passions, and with our vision.</li> <li>A solution is never a perfect fit to the problem.</li> <li>We need to practice what we preach.</li> <li>The Lean Startup approach is less expensive.</li> </ol></div> ]]> Friday, April 17, 2015 http://www.ednetinsight.com/news-alerts/voice-from-the-industry/lean-startup--why-it-matters-to-k-12-education.html Is Career and Technical Education in the Discussion? http://www.ednetinsight.com/news-alerts/voice-from-the-industry/is-career-and-technical-education-in-the-discussion.html What is your view of career and technical education? Today CTE is taking a bigger part of the national stage in education. Some of the drivers of this growing emphasis include: <div><ul> <li>Renewed interest in the career readiness model for students at the secondary and postsecondary levels</li> <li>Increased academic requirements in high school</li> <li>Student debt for college graduates</li> <li>Department of Labor listing the most growth in occupations that require a career and technical education path</li> </ul></div> ]]> Friday, April 03, 2015 http://www.ednetinsight.com/news-alerts/voice-from-the-industry/is-career-and-technical-education-in-the-discussion.html Being a Good Ed Tech Partner http://www.ednetinsight.com/news-alerts/voice-from-the-industry/being-a-good-ed-tech-partner.html “Listen to your customers.” It’s a tried-and-true business adage but often easier said than done. To listen is one thing but to understand what is being said and act upon what you have heard can be challenging. In the K-12 market, this is compounded by the fact that educators are so busy. <p><ul> <li>Use educational research to drive product development.</li> <li>Make it easy for educators to provide concrete and specific feedback to their needs that is both understandable and actionable.</li> <li>Be receptive to feedback and allow time to listen.</li> <li>Let educators know their voices are being heard.</li> </ul></p> ]]> Friday, March 27, 2015 http://www.ednetinsight.com/news-alerts/voice-from-the-industry/being-a-good-ed-tech-partner.html Marketing in the Age of the Digital Transition http://www.ednetinsight.com/news-alerts/voice-from-the-industry/marketing-in-the-age-of-the-digital-transition.html It is time to throw away the old textbook-business model and focus on what drives learning and success for our customers. <div><ul> <li>Educators know best what works for their students.</li> <li>As terms like adaptive, personalized, and differentiated take hold in the educational business-partner community, success or failure will hinge on making it easy to implement new resources in the classroom and on the proven results of student success.</li> <li>As we partner with educators and administrators to help students succeed, we are creating self-directed learners who will be college- and career-ready.</li> </ul></div> <div>It is time to move forward and make digital content the first part of the conversation.</div> ]]> Friday, March 06, 2015 http://www.ednetinsight.com/news-alerts/voice-from-the-industry/marketing-in-the-age-of-the-digital-transition.html Doing Your Homework: How to Develop a Successful Ed Tech Solution From the Start http://www.ednetinsight.com/news-alerts/voice-from-the-industry/doing-your-homework--how-to-develop-a-successful-ed-tech-solution-from-the-start.html My experience as an educator, principal, and Chief Officer of School Improvement in some of the nation’s most struggling schools forged my path to creating an education talent management system whose success relies heavily on the initial groundwork or “homework” we completed well before a launch date was even penciled in. We simply cannot allow schools, teachers, or students to be guinea pigs for a prematurely launched product. Ed tech organizations need to do their homework before launching a solution. <p>Success in ed tech solutions requires the following initiatives:</p> <p><ul> <li>Fieldwork Experience</li> <li>Strategic Partnerships</li> <li>Extensive Research</li> </p></ul> ]]> Friday, February 20, 2015 http://www.ednetinsight.com/news-alerts/voice-from-the-industry/doing-your-homework--how-to-develop-a-successful-ed-tech-solution-from-the-start.html Career and Technical Education: Addressing the Skills Gap Through Industry and Education Collaboration http://www.ednetinsight.com/news-alerts/voice-from-the-industry/career-and-technical-education--addressing-the-skills-gap-through-industry-and-education-collaboration.html <p><ul> <li>The Bureau of Labor Statistics’ reports that 8.7 million Americans are currently unemployed despite the existence of 5 million unfilled jobs.</li> <li>Improved collaboration between the educational system and the industries in need of workers is one solution to this “skills gap.”</li> <li>Businesses need to be engaged in the development of their local and regional educational programs, while educators match their curricula to industry requirements so students receive the education and skills needed for employment.</li> <li>By creating a stronger partnership between industry and education, students will enter the workforce with the ability to succeed in in-demand careers.</li> </ul></p> ]]> Friday, February 06, 2015 http://www.ednetinsight.com/news-alerts/voice-from-the-industry/career-and-technical-education--addressing-the-skills-gap-through-industry-and-education-collaboration.html Now is the Time http://www.ednetinsight.com/news-alerts/voice-from-the-industry/now-is-the-time.html <center>&nbsp; <p>We are fifteen years into this century.</p> <p>This is the century of the entrepreneur.</p> <p>Each individual must be entrepreneurial.</p> <p>Schools must prepare entrepreneurial thinkers.</p> <p>Now is the time.</p></center> ]]> Friday, January 30, 2015 http://www.ednetinsight.com/news-alerts/voice-from-the-industry/now-is-the-time.html It Couldn’t Get Much Harder to Access Digital Content and Services – The Case for Single Sign-On for Schools http://www.ednetinsight.com/news-alerts/voice-from-the-industry/it-couldn-t-get-much-harder-to-access-digital-content-and-services---the-case-for-single-sign-on-for-schools.html Holiday shopping recently, I overheard a customer in the Apple Store getting help. “I’m a schoolteacher, and I have a thousand passwords. Some can’t use this. Some can’t use that. I can’t remember them all!” And she’s right. Students and teachers on average have to remember at least 25 passwords, and an average of 5 minutes per lesson is lost recovering passwords, accessing web-based services, or hunting down technical support. <p><ul> <li>If a school uses multiple applications that require logins and these applications are web-based, the school could benefit from single sign-on (SSO).</li> <li>Implementing SSO for schools could increase productivity, enhance security, and reduce support costs.</li> <li>Increasingly, SSO platforms are cloud-based, affordable, and even free and easy to implement.</li> </ul></p> ]]> Friday, January 09, 2015 http://www.ednetinsight.com/news-alerts/voice-from-the-industry/it-couldn-t-get-much-harder-to-access-digital-content-and-services---the-case-for-single-sign-on-for-schools.html Advice to Start-Up Ed Tech Companies http://www.ednetinsight.com/news-alerts/voice-from-the-industry/advice-to-start-up-ed-tech-companies.html This may sound strange, but for small companies, not all growth is good growth. Measured growth is best. <p><ul> <li>Listen to your customers and engage them in every step.</li> <li>Recognize and balance the sometimes competing and conflicting needs of customers, investors, and employees.</li> <li>Ask good questions and stay fact- and data-driven.</li> ]]> Friday, December 19, 2014 http://www.ednetinsight.com/news-alerts/voice-from-the-industry/advice-to-start-up-ed-tech-companies.html Anticipating and Responding to the Changing Needs of Education http://www.ednetinsight.com/news-alerts/voice-from-the-industry/anticipating-and-responding-to-the-changing-needs-of-education.html Nearly three decades working in education have shown me that our industry can be both cyclical and reactive and that change is inevitable. As an education, technology, and curriculum company, it is a constant juggling act anticipating and responding to the changing needs of our schools and educators while remaining steadfast enough to block out the day-to-day static and noise and continue to trust in our internal vision and development plan. As a leader, there are a few principles I have followed to navigate these dynamics. <p><ol> <li>Know who you are.</li> <li>Stay true to who you are but accept that who you are will change.</li> <li>Focus on kids.</li> <li>Invest in people and embrace change.</li> </ol></p> ]]> Friday, December 12, 2014 http://www.ednetinsight.com/news-alerts/voice-from-the-industry/anticipating-and-responding-to-the-changing-needs-of-education.html Career and Technical Education: Graduating the Nation’s Future Workforce http://www.ednetinsight.com/news-alerts/voice-from-the-industry/career-and-technical-education--graduating-the-nation-s-future-workforce.html <p><ul> <li>The average high school graduation rate for career and technical education (CTE) students is 90.18%, compared with an average national graduation rate of 80%.</li> <li>CTE programs teach students academic and technical skills in the context of career areas, creating relevant learning experiences that can play a significant role in helping them complete high school and prepare themselves for postsecondary education and training.</li> <li>As workers retire and technology advances, the gap between open positions and workers qualified to fill them will continue to widen, and skilled workers with CTE training will be in high demand.</li> <li>Research shows that education and training beyond high school will be required for at least two-thirds of job openings by 2018; CTE programs prepare students to meet these requirements.</li> </ul></p> ]]> Friday, November 14, 2014 http://www.ednetinsight.com/news-alerts/voice-from-the-industry/career-and-technical-education--graduating-the-nation-s-future-workforce.html Common Career Technical Core – It’s What America’s Students NEED! http://www.ednetinsight.com/news-alerts/voice-from-the-industry/common-career-technical-core---it-s-what-america-s-students-need-.html For the past several years, the Common Core for academic subjects has dominated the national media on education, but what you may not have heard about is the Common Career Technical Core (CCTC). <div><ul> <li>CCTC is important for students.</li> <li>CCTC is important for the economy.</li> </ul></div> <div>Read on to learn more about CCTC and what you can do.</div> ]]> Friday, October 24, 2014 http://www.ednetinsight.com/news-alerts/voice-from-the-industry/common-career-technical-core---it-s-what-america-s-students-need-.html When Data Is a Win-Win http://www.ednetinsight.com/news-alerts/voice-from-the-industry/when-data-is-a-win-win.html October brings one of those rare opportunities when various forces in the K-12 education eco-system come together to do good for themselves, for each other and, most importantly, for the students we all serve. Project Tomorrow’s annual Speak Up survey is a win-win on multiple fronts. <div><ul> <li>At the classroom level, the survey provides teachers and students with an opportunity to have their voices heard.</li> <li>The data provides schools and school districts with a sense of where they are in the advancement of digital learning compared with schools and districts across the nation.</li> <li>State education agencies benefit from having as many districts as possible respond to the call for participation in Speak Up.</li> <li>The edtech vendor community benefits greatly from the reports produced by Project Tomorrow.</li> </ul></div> ]]> Friday, October 17, 2014 http://www.ednetinsight.com/news-alerts/voice-from-the-industry/when-data-is-a-win-win.html I Never Saw Them Coming…The Education Disruptors! http://www.ednetinsight.com/news-alerts/voice-from-the-industry/i-never-saw-them-coming-the-education-disruptors-.html Do you ever find yourself driving down the road, minding your own business, hardly any traffic, looking straight ahead, and the next thing you know you are surrounded by fast-moving cars that quickly zoom past you? <div>Put this in a business context: you are most focused on looking straight ahead for your organization and not bothering to glance side to side or to see what is coming up fast from behind…you need to be aware of these fast-moving entities. They are called…<em>The Disruptors!</em></div> <ul> <li>Fueled by one estimate that puts first quarter Venture investment in edtech start-ups at $500M<sup>1</sup></li> <li>Most often answering a market need</li> <li>Can represent a strong opportunity for partnership and a possible predictor for where the market is headed</li> </ul> Here are two case studies of companies that I consider education market Disruptors! ]]> Friday, September 19, 2014 http://www.ednetinsight.com/news-alerts/voice-from-the-industry/i-never-saw-them-coming-the-education-disruptors-.html Vicki's Top 10 Tips for Making the Most of EdNET http://www.ednetinsight.com/news-alerts/voice-from-the-industry/vicki-s-top-10-tips-for-making-the-most-of-ednet.html This is the 26th year of the EdNET Conference, and I have been honored to be involved in 23 of them. That makes me a veteran! <p>My tips are intended for the newcomers to EdNET but can also serve as a set of reminders for conference veterans so that all may make use of the networking tools and opportunities before, during, and following the conference.</p> ]]> Friday, August 29, 2014 http://www.ednetinsight.com/news-alerts/voice-from-the-industry/vicki-s-top-10-tips-for-making-the-most-of-ednet.html Winning the Talent War in the Competitive Education Market http://www.ednetinsight.com/news-alerts/voice-from-the-industry/winning-the-talent-war-in-the-competitive-education-market.html Today’s education market is constantly changing and rapidly growing. While a growing market is a positive sign for the education space, it also is an indicator of a significant challenge hiring managers are facing as they compete to build world-class teams. There are several key issues within the hiring market: <ul> <li>You Know Your Sales Metrics, But Do You Know Your Recruiting Metrics?</li> <li>How to Manage Candidate Supply and Demand: The Rising Importance of Hidden Candidates</li> <li>The Impact Competition Has on Growth-Directed Education Start-Ups</li> <li>The Top 3 Most In-Demand Candidate Skill Sets in Today’s Market</li> <li>Advice for Hiring Managers</li> </ul> ]]> Friday, August 22, 2014 http://www.ednetinsight.com/news-alerts/voice-from-the-industry/winning-the-talent-war-in-the-competitive-education-market.html