November 9, 2005

T.H.E. Newsletter: November 9, 2005
November 9, 2005
WEEKLY SECTIONS
  • Final Action: One More Week to Tell Congress to Fund Ed Tech!

    Take Action Now Before Congress Finalizes Funding for the Enhancing Education Through Technology Program!

    Use the ETAN Web page to contact your U.S. Senators and Representative to urge them to fund the Enhancing Education Through Technology Program (EETT) program at $496 million for FY06, http://www.edtechactionnetwork.org

    It is imperative that EETT supporters contact their members of Congress today. Right now, Congress is considering drastic cuts for individual programs and across-the-board cuts for all education programs. If the education technology community's voice is not heard, Congress and the Administration will slash EETT funding.

    Congress and the Administration are in the process of finalizing how much money to devote to EETT for FY 06. The EETT program provides states and school districts with funds to purchase hardware and software, engage in professional development, develop database systems, operate online assessments, and conduct outreach to parents. Nearly 25% of states rely on EETT as their sole source of education technology funding. Last year, the program received an appropriation of $496 million.

    At the beginning of this year, the Administration proposed in its FY 06 budget proposal to eliminate EETT entirely. The full House and the Senate Appropriations Committees disagreed with the Administration's position, proposing to fund EETT at $300 million and $425 million, respectively. Since Congress failed to approve final funding figures for all education programs by the end of the 2005 Fiscal Year (September 30), EETT has been operating under a temporary funding measure, known as a Continuing Resolution, which funds EETT until November 18th at the House's $300 million funding level.

    The disaster wrought by Hurricanes Katrina and Rita has thrown the entire FY06 Appropriations process into further tumult. A number of Congressional members are seeking to pay for the federal costs of reconstruction by cutting FY06 funding for all programs from 2% to 5% and eliminating some programs entirely. If either option is adopted, EETT could receive funding even less than the House's $300 million figure, which already represents a substantial cut from FY05 levels.

    CONTACT YOUR SENATORS AND REPRESENTATIVES TODAY
    (http://www.edtechactionnetwork.org) AND TELL THEM TO FUND EETT!
  • North Carolina School District Soars in State's Latest Ed Tech Rankings

    Moore County Schools (http://www.mcs.k12.nc.us), which three years ago ranked near the bottom in North Carolina for technology, is now among the most tech-savvy school districts in the state. Moore County Schools has climbed to 16th place, three years after placing 111th out of 115 school districts in the state, according to the latest rankings released by the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction.

    “Our infusion of technology in classrooms and huge improvement in the state's latest technology rankings is a testament to our commitment to give students of Moore County a top-notch education,” says James Tagliareni, CTO at Moore County Schools. “Having access to technology, and more importantly, learning to use technology is critical for our children's future, and we're accomplishing that in Moore County Schools. When they graduate, they will be better prepared to compete in the global economy.”

    For the full story, visit http://www.prweb.com/releases/2005/11/prweb304988.htm

  • Sonic Foundry's Mediasite Products Qualify for E-Rate Funding

    Sonic Foundry Inc. recently announced that its Mediasite products are E-Rate eligible and, as a result, schools around the country can now qualify to receive the technology at a subsidized cost. Mediasite eliminates the adoption barriers to online teaching and learning by transparently recording instructors in the natural classroom environment without interfering with their teaching style or content. For faculty, it means no change in their coursework preparation and the ability to teach the way they want to teach. For students learning remotely, it provides an exceptional online representation of the classroom experience, complete with audio, video, and synchronized instructional materials.

    For a complete listing of the available Sonic Foundry products that qualify for E-Rate funding, E-mail erate@sonicfoundry.com.

    For the full story, visit
    http://www.sonicfoundry.com/main.aspx?dir=company&subpage=press_release&id=701

  • 3Com Wireless LAN Mobility System Safeguards Network Learning for Virginia District

    Setting an example for other K-12 school districts, the Newport News Public Schools in Newport News, VA—with more than 33,000 students and 4,900 staff spread across 45 schools—has dramatically improved the security and performance of its wireless LANs using the 3Com Wireless LAN Mobility System. The Wireless LAN Mobility System from 3Com Corp. centralizes features such as configuration, user authentication, and virtual LAN functionality, enabling Newport News Public Schools to manage more than 500 wireless access points district-wide from a single location.

    For the full story, visit
    http://www.3com.com/corpinfo/en_US/pressbox/press_release.jsp?INFO_ID=232361

  • Scantron, Measured Progress Announce Partnership

    Scantron and Measured Progress, a nonprofit organization dedicated to improving instruction and student learning in standards-based classrooms, have announced a partnership that will provide Measured Progress assessments and items through Scantron's Achievement Series, a leading Web-based assessment solution. The partnership will also allow the two companies to engage in joint promotions and for Measured Progress to resell Achievement Series. Scantron will integrate Measured Progress assessments into Achievement Series over the next two months, with the first set of test items available to customers in early 2006.

    For the full story, visit http://www.measuredprogress.org/MediaRelations/NewsReleases/Scantron.html

Tech4Learning (http://www.tech4learning.com) has announced the latest version of its award-winning multimedia authoring tool, MediaBlender. New enhancements in MediaBlender 3 include: a scripting language, an option to save projects as a single file, the ability to rotate and flip images and text objects, and a new button that makes it easier to launch additional files on your computer. MediaBlender 3 also offers an improved interface that allows users to easily export projects into Web-ready projects, HTML, or as a series of images. Existing MediaBlender customers can download a free update at: http://www.tech4learning.com/mediablender/updates.html. Users interested in previewing the program can download a free, fully functional trial copy at: http://www.tech4learning.com/mediablender/blendertrial.html. Pricing starts at $89.95 for a single license.


iPREPpress, a content provider for the iPod, and SparkNotes, a division of Barnes & Noble Inc., have announced the availability of 11 study guides for classic American and British literature for download onto the iPod. The iPod study guides feature the same content as the best-selling study guides from SparkNotes, including context, plot overview, summary and analysis, theme, motives, key facts, and quizzes, as well as audio hyperlinks to context, audio plot overview, and audio analysis of major characters. SparkNotes guides play on iPod Video, iPod Nano, iPod Photo, and third-generation and higher iPod and iPod Mini models. Current study guides include: The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, The Catcher in the Rye, The Great Gatsby, Hamlet, The Odyssey, and Romeo & Juliet. For more information and pricing, visit http://www.ipreppress.com.


Engrade (http://www.engrade.com) has launched the Engrade Suite, adding a free online attendance book and assignment calendar to its existing free online gradebook. The new Engrade Suite allows teachers to post attendance and upcoming assignments online for students and parents to access. These new features are in addition to Engrade's existing online gradebook, which enables teachers to post assignment scores online so that students and parents can log in to see overall class grades, assignment scores, and any missing assignments.

 



http://www.sciencestandardslessons.org
The Space Foundation has developed a free, comprehensive bank of science lessons for grades pre-K through high school. The more than 200 lessons are divided into grade levels—preK-2, 3-5, 6-8, and 9-12— and all lessons specify the national science standards met. Sample lessons for each grade level are available online to preview. To access the entire lesson bank, teachers must register to establish a login and password.


http://www.tolerance.org/teach/activities/activity.jsp?ar=365
Teaching Tolerance is offering free classroom activities to commemorate the courageous life of Rosa Parks and other women before her who fought for freedom. The site provides age-appropriate lessons for early, middle, and upper grades; exclusive Web-based classroom activities; and information on ordering a free educational kit that includes the 40-minute Mighty Times: The Legacy of Rosa Parks documentary and a viewers' guide with classroom activities.


For a complete listing of up-to-date conference information, visit T.H.E. Conference Calendar, T.H.E. Journal 's comprehensive conference database, at: http://www.theconferencecalendar.com

Call for Papers!!!
Please take a second to look at some of the topics we'll be covering in our fall issues:

  • School Perspectives —discuss a specific topic, trend, or concern about education technology.

  • Wishlist/Shortlist —a simple list of the technology (e.g., wireless, laptops, etc.) you're looking at to solve a challenge in your school/district, and an accompanying “shortlist” of vendors you're looking at to solve those challenges.

If you have a good story that is related to any of the above topics, please e-mail an abstract to mmiller@101com.com

T.H.E. Offers Educators Individual netTrekker Subscriptions
T.H.E. Journal has announced an exclusive partnership with Thinkronize, developers of netTrekker, the trusted search engine for schools, which allows educators worldwide to purchase individual (single-user) subscriptions to netTrekker, which previously was available only on a site license basis to schools and districts. With this initiative, T.H.E. and Thinkronize have combined to better serve their customer's needs by personalizing the way educators use the Internet. Educators can purchase individual subscriptions for netTrekker through the T.H.E. Journal's Web site at http://www.thejournal.com/netTrekker. The suggested list price for a one-year subscription is $49.95.

THE Institute and AOL @ SCHOOL Offer New Online Course for Educators  
“Internet Literacy – Making the Most of the Web,” is a new online course for educators interested in using the World Wide Web in teaching and learning. Designed for elementary and secondary school teachers, the course provides tools for educators to integrate technology into their curricula to improve student achievement and meet NCLB requirements. The cost is $79 per person; course moderation and graduate credit are additional options. “Internet Literacy – Making the Most of the Web," is designed to be useful both for educators new to using technology in teaching and learning and for tech-savvy veterans.
For complete course details and to register, go to http://www.thejournal.com/institute/course510.cfm.

Four Integrating Technology Courses from T.H.E. Institute
T.H.E. Institute is offering four online professional development courses to help educators comply with NCLB requirements and use technology more successfully in the classroom. The cost is $149 per course, which includes a $10 per person per course administration fee for documentation of clock hours and a certificate of completion. Course moderation and graduate credit are additional options; volume discounts are available. Anyone who enrolls in a course will receive individual access to the netTrekker site, as well as free individual access to United Learning's unitedstreaming site. In addition, special pricing is available for educators in districts that have purchased Glencoe/McGraw-Hill's TechCONNECT.

Integrating Technology in the Classroom Courses: Social Studies - Available Now; Science - Available Now; English/Language Arts- Available Now; Mathematics - Available Now

For more information, log on to http://www.thejournal.com/institute/IntegratingTech.cfm.

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