February 22, 2006

February 22, 2006
  • BREAKING NEWS: DoE Names New Director for Office of Educational Technology

    Tim Magner, the former deputy director of the US Department of Education's Office of Educational Technology (OET; http://www.ed.gov/about/offices/list/os/technology), is taking over as director of OET, filling the position that has been vacant since Susan Patrick left last year. Magner has a long history working in the education technology industry, including serving as executive director of K-12 education for Microsoft Corp. and director of the Schools Interoperability Framework. He also has extensive experience teaching at the middle school, high school, and college levels.

    For continued, up-to-date coverage on this appointment, visit T.H.E. online at http://www.thejournal.com


    Fulfilling Technology's Broken Promise: A Perspective on Educational Technology
    By Robert Bilyk, co-founder of lodeStar Learning Inc. and Cyber Village Academy

    I started my career in education in the early '80s as a high school language arts teacher in the affluent community of Mendota Heights, MN. The experience that encouraged me to use technology in the classroom related to a basic-level language arts class that I taught. All of the students in the class could not read or write very well for widely different reasons. A third of the students were limited English proficient, a third had specific learning disabilities, and the remaining students were low achievers. Although I had one classroom of nearly 40 students, I needed different strategies for each subgroup. Essentially, I needed three separate lesson plans. At the time, I turned to the Instructional Materials Center (IMC) staff for advice on how computers and software could assist me in the classroom.

    Two decades later, teachers are still faced with similar challenges. The classrooms of today are a composite of special-needs students, English-language learners, high achievers, the gifted and talented, visual learners, kinesthetic learners, transferees, the list goes on. Some would also argue that the challenges have become inherently greater in the last two decades because of larger class sizes, reduced budgets, and bigger social problems.

    The one inarguable difference between now and then has been the promise that technology holds for the classroom teacher...

    For the full article, visit http://www.thejournal.com/articles/17933/

  • Cambium Learning Acquires IntelliTools, Forms New Technology Group

    Cambium Learning Inc. has announced the acquisition of IntelliTools Inc., a technology provider for preK-8 students requiring differentiated instruction and alternative means of accessing curriculum. Terms of the acquisition were not disclosed. “Cambium Learning is proud to now be partnered with IntelliTools and their terrific team of employees who are committed to serving those students with exceptional learning needs,” said David Cappellucci, president and COO of Cambium Learning. “The addition of IntelliTools to Kurzweil Educational Systems, and our recent acquisition of the Acceleration Station progress monitoring software suite, is an important step in realizing Cambium Learning's strategy of tightly integrating research-based content, services, and technologies into solutions that work for all students.”

    For the full story, visit

  • Dell Introduces Curriculum-Specific Intelligent K-12 Classrooms

    The new generation of Dell Intelligent Classrooms helps make teaching and learning math, science, language arts, and social sciences more engaging and relevant for K-12 students and teachers. Dell Intelligent Classrooms—computers, technology devices, content, and professional development that transform classrooms into integrated teaching and learning environments—are now available in two curriculum-specific modules: 1) Match and Science, and 2) English, Foreign Languages, and Social Sciences. Each Dell Intelligent Classroom Solution is designed to stimulate learning, improve collaboration and communication, and help educators evaluate student understanding in real time so they can tailor instruction to students' needs. They are also customized to help meet each educator's instructional goals.

    For the full story, visit
    http://www1.us.dell.com/content/topics/global.aspx/corp/< br="">pressoffice/en/2006/2006_02_08_rr_000?c=us&l=en&s=corp

  • California Tying Education Tech Grants to Copyright Education

    Legislation is being considered in California that would see the state's educational technology grant program tethered to requirements for teaching copyright law to students. Introduced nearly a year ago, AB 307 would amend section 51871.5 of the Californian Education Code to include new preconditions for public schools applying for funding under the oversight of the California Technology Assistance Project. The project is designed to provide a network of technical assistance to schools and their districts in implementing education technology as determined by the Californian State Board of Education.

    Schools that wish to apply for grants will need to demonstrate that they have a plan to educate their students in three areas: the 'ethical behavior in regards to the use of information technology'; 'the concept, purpose, and significance of a copyright'; and 'the implications of illegal peer-to-peer network file sharing.'

    For the full story and to discuss the topic online, visit

Atomic Learning has released 46 tutorials for Pinnacle Attendance Manager, an integral part of Excelsior Software's Pinnacle Plus System. Pinnacle Attendance Manager is a flexible software application that collects student data from teachers' electronic gradebooks. It also gives administrators and teachers the ability to provide comprehensive, on-demand attendance information in multiple formats and configurations. These new tutorials complement the Pinnacle Gradebook2 tutorials previously released by Atomic Learning and are available to all subscribers at http://www.atomicLearning.com. Pricing: an annual subscription to Atomic Learning is $79.99; volume pricing is available.


California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's administration recently unveiled a new 'Green California' Web site based on his vision of an energy-efficient and environmentally friendly California. The new site is filled with ideas, guidelines, reference materials, engineering data, and environmentally friendly purchasing information to assist state and local government agencies and California businesses with the shift toward environmental sustainability, energy conservation, and the reduction of landfill waste.

Federal Resources for Educational Excellence is a result of more than 30 federal agencies forming a working group to make hundreds of federally supported teaching and learning resources easier to find. Special areas highlighted on the free Web site this month include Black History Month and President’s Day.

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!!!

THE Journal is currently looking for the following types of articles as we prepare for our 2006 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 potential article, or questions about the above topics, please e-mail [email protected]

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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THE Newsletter is a bulletin comprised of recent announcements that affect the education community. Our goal is to keep our readers well informed with the most up to date news. In addition, we hope our audience will share with us their opinions regarding educational technology issues so we may be certain we are covering the topics that are of most interest to them. Please direct any questions or comments about THE Newsletter to [email protected]

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