Conference Vault
Tech Forum New York 2003

Here is a recap of the day's sessions and events, complete with handouts and resources provided by many of the speakers.

Opening Keynote:

The Next Tipping Point

Dr. Jan Van Dam
With technology progressing at breakneck speeds, it's sometimes difficult to separate the noise from the significant breakthroughs. When we look back on the first few years of the 21st century, what will be the educational technology "tipping points" that we will remember? And what new tipping points can we anticipate in the next few years? Dr. Jan Van Dam will take a brief look at educational technology history and make some educated guesses at what is yet to come. In this context, she will offer advice on how we, as educational leaders, can prepare responsibly to maximize the opportunities that define the future for our students.

Breakout sessions

#1: Professional Development: What's Working?

Judy Salpeter (moderator), Mary Ann Pollett, Peter Pappas & Kathleen P. King
What have been your greatest professional development successes? Your disasters that have turned into learning experiences? We have invited several tapped-in panelists to lead off with examples and tips. Then it's your turn to share what's working in your own schools - and to help us develop an advice list for others interested in effective staff development.

#2: Mining the Data to Improve Student Achievement

Kim Carter (moderator), Todd McIntire, Michael Greenfield & John Burke
In this session, school leaders with proven records of improving student achievement will talk about the data management tools and approaches that have helped their schools focus more effectively on the needs of students. Participants will examine real data sets and explore the key elements of effective data-driven decision making.

#3: When and Why (or Why Not) to Outsource

Jeff Branzburg (moderator), Peter Reilly, Sydney Freifelder & Sarah Tate
Who should handle technical support, student data collection, financial tracking and professional development for a district -- outside specialists or in-house experts? Which is the more economical approach and what are the tradeoffs? Our panelists will share their experiences with outsourcing and offer suggestions for other decision-makers to consider.

#4: Security Challenges and Solutions

Susan McLester (moderator), John Q. Porter, Steve Miller & Jane Bloomquist
Protecting sensitive data, keeping your district legal, complying with federal filtering requirements, and securing your networks from hackers and viruses -- these are just a few of the challenges facing school and network administrators today. Hear from several experts who have suggestions for ways of keeping your students and your technology safe, secure and out of harm's way.

Industry Spotlights

Hear from and respond to the companies that are sponsoring this event and shaping the future of educational technology. There will be several theme-related spotlight panels to choose from.

General Session


World Class Leadership

John Q. Porter
As school districts increasingly rely on technology to support instruction and enhance the effectiveness and productivity of the work force, the role of the chief information officer has become a critical factor for success. Mr. John Q. Porter will provide insights into how he transformed the technology department of the nation's 18th largest school district into a world-class organization. He will challenge your perspective on the role of information technology professionals in education and provide practical guidelines to assist you in ensuring that your organizational goals, human systems, and technology systems are aligned. Finally, he will address the technology systems, skills and knowledge that data-driven decision-makers need to move from data to results.

Breakout sessions

#5: Managing the Bottom Line

Jeff Branzburg (moderator), John Porter, Jan Van Dam & Gary Ramella
As budgets tighten and bars are raised, many schools find themselves in a bind. How can we afford the 21st century tools that will translate into greater student achievement? Where do we find the funds for data warehousing, network security, mobile computing and the other technologies our schools need? Our panelists offer advice on doing more with less.

#6: What Kind of Leader Are You? [mini-workshop]

Peter Reilly (moderator)
Leadership is less about what you know than what you embody. Principals, technology directors and coordinators, or anybody else who plays a leadership role in schools -- this participatory session is for you. It will focus on the leadership issues, concerns and challenges you face in your work and engage you in a variety of activities that will lay the groundwork for effective leadership practices in the future.

#7: Handhelds for Administrators [mini-workshop]

Gwen Solomon (moderator), Peter Pappas
Managing time and tasks is the key to efficiency and productivity. In this participatory session, tech directors, school administrators, and other technology leaders will explore ways to use the Palm handheld computers as management tools. Through hands-on activities and large-screen demonstrations, participants will learn how to use built-in Palm applications (eg, the To Do List and Date Book) as well as third-party add-ons such as Documents to Go to manage hectic schedules, meetings and projects. Other commercial applications for assessment, administration, and classroom productivity will be reviewed as well. Designed for leaders with some experience using PDAs, this session will also offer tips for beginners and power users. Bring your own "cool" ideas to share/beam.