The explosion of technology has changed every aspect of how we think, work,
and play. Students in today's classrooms must learn to use technology effectively
for future academic and professional success. Yet many classrooms look
just as they did decades ago, having tools no more sophisticated than paper
and pencil. The Smart Tools Academy is a four-day residential immersion
experience that will give school leaders the tools to infuse technology
into their schools. These institutes offer participants an intensive educational
experience and opportunities to exchange ideas with other school leaders
across the state.
The Smart Tools Academy has been developed to promote the effective use
of technology in Washington's K-12 schools by training approximately 2,500
public and private school superintendents and principals in two years. The
University of Washington Office of Educational Partnerships and the Technology Alliance
have partnered to create the Smart Tools Academy. Education leaders, business
representatives, and community members from around Washington State support
and advise the Academy. The Smart Tools Academy is funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates
Foundation and SAP Public Sector
The Academy Program
Experts in education and technology--mostly principals and technology directors--lead participants through the sessions,
which will include presentations, facilitated discussions, on-line coursework,
and hands-on workshops with computer hardware and software. The curriculum
and post-Academy activities, including regional meetings, Web sites and
listservs, have been designed to support continuing relationships among
the school leaders. Academy participants will each receive a laptop computer
for use during the Academy and for professional use at the school or district.
The Academy will provide each participant with meals, lodging, and all instructional
The Academy's residential sessions and follow-up activities will enable
each participant to:
- Understand the ways that educational technology contributes to student
learning, curriculum integration and the creation of educational communities.
- Prepare for the management challenges associated with introducing
and supporting technology into an organization.
- Develop a technology leadership plan for each school, including a
thoughtful approach to professional development for each school's teachers.
- Explore models for involving the community in technology programs
at schools both during the school day and after-hours.
- Increase productivity and understanding of technology through hands-on
training in the use of technology tools.
- Create connections among fellow participants that will extend beyond
the institutes and will support the learning that begins in the residential
- Expert instruction on teaching, learning and technology from K-12
and university education leaders.
- Best practices presentations from a variety of the state's most successful
programs, including presentations from teachers and students who have
effectively used educational technology in their teaching and learning.
- Facilitated discussions centered on case studies, video presentations,
- Networking among participants during Academy sessions and continued
during follow-up meetings and via Web sites and email listservs.
For more information, contact Susannah Malarkey, Academy Co-Director, Executive
Director of the Technology Alliance, firstname.lastname@example.org,
or, Louis Fox, Academy Co-Director, Vice Provost for Educational
Partnerships, University of Washington, email@example.com.