Technology and the Future of Education and Work
Technology plays an important role in both education and the workforce and this impact is growing in significant ways. NJASA has long recognized this trend and has led the way in assisting New Jersey educators to learn about best practices for education, administration and district operations. NJASA established a Technology Committee more than two decades ago, providing the opportunity for district leaders to share information and best practices that positively impact curriculum, instruction, assessment, communications and operations. The work of those innovative educators participating on the Technology Committee in its fledgling years resulted in TECHSPO, a statewide technology exhibition and training conference for school leaders. This past month, NJASA successfully conducted the 21st annual TECHSPO at Harrah’s Waterfront Conference Center in Atlantic City. With over 1,000 registrants and 1,500 participants, TECHSPO is New Jersey’s premier training and exhibition conference for educators in all roles, not just school leaders! The NJASA plan for our children and their future, titled Vision 2020, embodies 12-steps to address new learning challenges and deliver a world-class educational experience to each and every child in New Jersey. Technology applications are a core aspect of the plan whether we are creating a safe, secure and orderly learning environment; developing a robust and challenging curriculum; evaluating student progress; designing learning experiences; or providing professional development activities. TECHSPO is a cornerstone of NJASA activities assisting school personnel to achieve the goals of our Vision for Public Education in the year 2020 and beyond. Throughout the two-day conference, there were 68 well-planned, interactive and topical workshops offered to attendees and 126 companies demonstrating products and services for educators in the exhibition hall.
Kevin Brookhouser, author of The 20time Project: How educators can launch Google’s formula for future-ready innovation, keynoted the first day’s activities. His words on inspiring student creativity and innovation were a perfect introduction to the second day’s keynote by John Shammas who watched the tech startup scene explode in America and wanted a piece of the action at an early age. At 11-years old, he launched his career into software development, providing creative strategy and vision to new companies in North America and Europe. As his businesses grew, he took an unorthodox route through middle school and high school — having the privilege of sitting daily in Computer Science classes while simultaneously seeing the exact skills students needed to work in industry. After much deliberation, John decided not to pursue further education upon graduation from Old Bridge High School in 2015. Instead, his latest project is developing creative new apps for international retail investors to trade on the U.S. stock market! These speakers provided valuable insight into the needs of tomorrow’s students and workers.
NJASA recognizes the value of effective leaders and is committed to spearheading their development. TECHSPO is but one example of that commitment. Congratulations to Technology Committee Co-Chairs, Dr. David Gentile, Chief Education Officer, Millville Public School District; and Dr. Scott Rocco, Chief Education Officer, Spotswood Public Schools; the Technology Committee members; and to the TECHSPO speakers, participants and exhibitors for making TECHSPO 2016 the most successful in our 21-years of guiding educators to prepare creative and innovative students!
Mark Your Calendar for Techspo '17
January 26-27, 2017