Speakers: Tech Forum Boston 2011

Speakers: Tech Forum Boston 2011


Keynote Speaker
MITCHEL RESNICK, Professor of Learning Research, MIT Media Lab

In his role at the MIT Media Lab, Mitchel Resnick develops new technologies and activities to engage people in creative learning experiences -- helping them learn to think creatively, reason systematically, and work collaboratively. His Lifelong Kindergarten research group developed ideas and technologies underlying the LEGO Mindstorms robotics kits and the Scratch programming environment, used by millions of young people around the world. He co-founded the Computer Clubhouse project, an international network of after-school learning centers where youth from low-income communities learn to express themselves creatively with new technologies. Resnick earned a BS in physics from Princeton, and an MS and PhD in computer science from MIT. He worked for five years as a science-technology journalist, and he has lectured and consulted around the world on innovative uses of new technologies in education.


Tech Forum is well known for its great speakers, attendees and networking opportunities. The following team members will be presenting and/or leading a roundtable discussion:

Alice Barr, Instruction Technology Integrator Yarmouth, MEAlice Barr has lived, taught, and traveled on five continents and now lives in Maine. She is the instructional technology integrator at Yarmouth High School, a one-to-one laptop environment. A 2011 semi-finalist for Maine Teacher of the Year, she is also a Google Certified Teacher, one third of the SEEDLings team, adjunct faculty for The Professional Development Center at The University of Southern Maine and provides workshops and professional development sessions to teachers during the year.

Valerie Becker, Director of Integrated Technology, West Tisbury School, MAValerie Becker has been a technology teacher in Massachusetts for over 20 years. She has taught grades K-8, and is currently the director of integrated technology at West Tisbury School, in West Tisbury, MA. Becker has conducted technology training workshops at the school, district, state, regional and national levels. She is an Apple Distinguished Educator, a Goggle Certified Teacher and a MassCUE Pathfinder Award Winner. Her interest is in helping students communicate, connect, collaborate, and share globally. She finds the web astounding and delightful.

Kathleen M. Buckley, Instructional Technology Integration Specialist, Brockton Public Schools, MAKathleen Buckley is the Senior Instructional Technology Specialist for Brockton Public Schools, the fourth largest school district in MA with a diverse population utilizing over 7,000 computers. She is one of ten educators on the Massachusetts New Literacies team and has led the way in 21st Century Technology implementations, integrating items such as document cameras, interactive whiteboards, student response systems, audio amplification, iPads, smart phones, net books, and other light weight devices. Buckley hosts and coordinates annual technology conferences and facilitates higher education courses on technology integration through Bridgewater State University and American International College. She has written and been awarded several technology grants which she has managed on every level. Cyber Safety is one of the issues Buckley has addressed, making sure teachers have the resources they need to ensure their students are able to keep themselves safe on line. The number one thing she prides herself on is her desire to keep learning, to keep motivating others to learn new ideas, and to inspire students to reach for the stars.

Daniel Callahan, Technology Integration Specialist, Burlington Public Schools, MADan Callahan grew up in Massachusetts but ran away to college in Philadelphia. He liked it so much that he stayed there for thirteen years, spending eight of them teaching children in a middle school special education program in Pennsylvania’s Upper Darby School District. While in Philadelphia, he co-founded the Edcamp movement, a series of free professional development unconferences for educators that have spread across the country in the past year. Callahan currently works as a technology integration specialist for Burlington Public Schools at Pine Glen Elementary School.

Kim Carter, Executive Director, QED Foundation, NHWith 35 years of experience in education, Kim Carter has taught preK through graduate school, and provided training, coaching, and facilitation for administrators, teachers, parents, community partners, and youth in the U.S. and the U.K. A 1991 New Hampshire Teacher of the Year and 1996 New Hampshire Media Educator of the Year, she served on the NH Professional Standards Board from 1992–1995, was a contributing editor for Technology and Learning magazine for eight years, and has been a national facilitator for the School Reform Initiative (previously NSRF) for 15 years. Carter has been actively involved in local, state, and national education reform efforts for over two decades. She was one of the five-member planning team that designed and opened award-winning Souhegan High School in Amherst, NH, where she was director of information and technology services for eleven years. She then founded Monadnock Community Connections School (MC2), a competency-based high school of choice, serving as director and founding principal for seven years. She consulted on the founding of the Five Freedoms Project, and was executive director from January, 2009, until its December, 2009, merger with QED Foundation – a multigenerational organization of adults and youth working together to create and sustain student-centered learning communities.

Shelley Chamberlain, Technology Director, Newton Public Schools (and Executive Director, MassCUE)Shelley B. Chamberlain is director of information technology for the Newton (MA) Public Schools, K-12, and executive director of MassCUE. She began her teaching career in a self-contained special education classroom for Haverhill Public Schools in 1972. Two years later she developed the first resource room for special needs in the city of Cambridge. Her interest in using technology to support the differing learning styles of children also led her to create the first staff development position for adaptive technology in Cambridge. Before joining the Newton Public Schools in 2006, Chamberlain served for 13 years as the coordinator of educational technology for the Lexington Public Schools. Her most recent work is focused on how technology can support students as they develop the 21st century skills of creativity, critical thinking, collaboration, and communication. She has partnered with the Newton Schools Foundation to develop a prototype for the 21st century classroom. Student performance is being measured through a comprehensive evaluation designed by researchers from the Technology and Assessment Study Collaborative at Boston College’s Lynch School of Education.

Jerry Crisci, Director of Technology, Scarsdale Public Schools, NYAs director of technology for the Scarsdale Public Schools, Jerry Crisci helped develop an innovative computer curriculum that has been profiled in The Wall Street Journal and CBS radio's Charles Osgood program. In 2003, Scarsdale was one of three districts honored nationally with a "Technology Salute" by the National School Boards Association. Crisci’s articles and software reviews have appeared in many books and publications. He has served as an adjunct professor at the St. Thomas Aquinas College and a technology instructor at several ASCD Summer Technology Academies. He has also presented papers and workshops at numerous conferences and, as a Google Certified Teacher, conducted dozens of workshops on using Google technologies in education. Crisci is president of Chestnut Hill Media, an educational technology consulting firm and software design studio, and has authored two commercial software packages. His book on future trends in education will be published in November 2011.

N. Tracy Crowe, Principal, Massachusetts Virtual AcademyTracy Crowe is currently the principal of the first virtual K-12 school in MA. Previously she held administrative and teaching positions working with Kindergarten through post-graduate college students, and has also served as a member of numerous boards and organizations dedicated to children, world health, and education. Her interest in virtual schooling grew during research collaborations with MIT and Harvard: it became more focused during her doctoral studies at Nova Southeastern University, a leader in distance education. In particular, due to her work in developing countries, she is interested in how virtual schooling can act as the great equalizer and empower those who are otherwise underserved.

Patrick Larkin, Principal, Burlington High School, MAPatrick Larkin is in his 14th year as a high school administrator and seventh as a building principal. Prior to that he was a high school English teacher. As an assistant principal, Larkin was named Assistant Principal of the Year in the state of Massachusetts. He also is a former executive board member in the Massachusetts Secondary Schools Administrators Association (MSSAA) and he recently completed a two-year term as a member of the New England Association of Schools and Colleges Commission on Public Secondary Schools. He is an avid blogger and a proponent of social media to better engage teachers, students, and parents in the education process.

Dr. Robert Miller, Director of Information and Communications Technologies, New Canaan Public Schools, CTRob Miller is in his seventh year as director of information and communication technologies for the New Canaan Public Schools. Before that, he spent five years in a similar role in a neighboring school district. Miller is responsible for the technology infrastructure, technology support, data services, state reporting, and the instructional program for technology and library media, merged as “Information and Communication Technologies” in New Canaan. He recently finished his Doctorate of Education at Northcentral University in E-Learning and Teaching Online. His dissertation focused on the development of 21st century communication, collaboration, and digital literacy skills through the use of social network tools at the high school level.

Susan Miller, 5th Grade Teacher, Up-Island Regional School District, MASue Miller has been a public school educator for 21 years. She is a certified music teacher, special educator, and K-6 generalist. She is currently teaching at the 5th grade level where she is integrating music, art, theater, and technology into her classroom. Her goal is to provide her students with the tools and means with which to learn, connect and share with the world.

Samantha Morra, School Technology Coordinator, Montclair Public Schools, NJSamantha Morra is an educator with over 18 years in K-12 schools. She started her teaching career as a Kindergarten, first and second grade teacher. She has been an elementary amd middle school technology coordinator. She is a Google Certified Teacher and has presented throughout the state of New Jersey and is an advisor for the New Jersey Educational Computing Cooperative (NJECC). She has also presented at the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) conference, EduCon, TSETC and Tech Forum Northeast. She has been published in ISTE’s Learning & Leading magazine, quoted in a variety of newspapers including the New York Times and Star Ledger and appeared on NJN’s Classroom Close Up Television series. She also contributed to Web 2.0 How-To for Educators by Gwen Solomon and Lynne Schrum. She believes that technology has the power to transform education and build deeper understanding for students and teachers. You can find out more about her and her work in education at http://www.samanthamorra.com/

Joanne Najarian, Instructional Technology Specialist, Winchester Public Schools, MAAs an instructional technology specialist for the Winchester Public Schools, Joanne Najarian’s primary focus is addressing the Massachusetts Technology Literacy Standards and Expectations for third through fifth grade as well as helping students develop an understanding of the rules for safe and ethical use of the Internet. Throughout the school year she works with primary grade students, exposing them to technology through integration. Najarian is also an online instructor for K12 and Louisiana Virtual Schools, teaching Computer Literacy I and II, Web Design and Game Design. She is a MassCUE Board Member and also serves on the Massachusetts DEN (Discovery Educator Network) Leadership Council and as a DEN STAR Educator.

Liz Pape, President, Virtual High SchoolLiz Pape is president and CEO of Virtual High School Global Consortium (VHS), pioneers of online learning for high school students and online course design for teachers. She has more than 15 years of experience helping K-12 schools to develop a 21st century learning model. Under her management, VHS has grown from 28 member schools and 30 classes to a world-wide consortium of over 600 member schools and 300 teachers in 32 states and 39 countries. An award-winning online education expert, Pape regularly shares her expertise in K-12 online education by speaking nationally at numerous education and technology conferences. She is a founding Board of Directors member of iNACOL (International Association for Online Learning) and the DOME (Diversity and Outreach in Mathematics and Engineering) Foundation and has served on the Ontario E-Learning Consortium Board of Directors, the Blackboard Client Strategy Council, the Blackboard Idea Exchange Steering Committee, U.S. Department of Education National Online Education Policy Forum and the NCREL Blue Ribbon Panel for Online Education.

Michael Pincus, Teacher Scarsdale Public Schools, NYMichael Pincus is an elementary computer teacher at the Scarsdale Schools in Scarsdale, NY, where he works with teachers to design innovative technology projects. He has a passion for helping teachers and students share and present their work online. Prior to becoming a computer teacher, he was a 1st and 2nd grade classroom teacher. Before his teaching career, Pincus worked in advertising in NYC where he worked on such accounts as Apple, Nike and Coca-Cola.

W. Scott Prescott, Director of Instruction, Virtual Learning Academy Charter School, NHScott Prescott is currently the director of instruction at the Virtual Learning Academy Charter School, based out of Exeter, NH. In this role, he collaborates with schools around the state to develop alternative pathways for students to learn and demonstrate their learning. This work includes working with schools to offer students blended learning opportunities, competency recovery, and experiential learning opportunities, as well as anytime, anywhere, anyplace online learning. Prescott also works as a school coach through QED Foundation, a nonprofit organization providing training, coaching, and strategic consulting. He is a trained Critical Friends Coach and a frequent participant and presenter at national and state level conferences/trainings. Previous to his work at VLACS and QED, Prescott was the principal at Souhegan High School, in Amherst, NH, and, before that, taught math in Connecticut, Massachusetts, and NH for 15 years.

Bob Rainville, Manager of Information Systems, Newton Public Schools, MABob Rainville is responsible for the server, network and database infrastructure of the Newton district and manages the IT Tech Support function servicing the 21 schools of the district. Prior to joining Newton, he worked in the private sector holding IT management positions at United Technologies, Chiron Diagnostics and Fidelity Investments. In his eight years in Newton, Rainville has applied his business background, technology awareness and project management skills to improve the systems and services available to the teachers, administrators and 11,800 students across the district. He works closely with the director of technology and the coordinators of instructional technology and library media services to ensure that the systems and services being considered meet curriculum goals and improve the educational process and quality in the classroom. It’s not simply about pursuing the latest, hot, new technology but rather about researching alternatives, setting priorities and making technological and financial decisions that will ultimately impact student achievement. It’s all about the kids!!

Kathy Schrock, Director of Technology, Nauset Public Schools, MAAs director of technology of the Nauset Public Schools in Orleans, MA, Kathy Schrock is responsible for maintenance of all the technology and networking for seven schools, technology curriculum infusion planning, and teacher training and professional development in both technology and information literacy. She is well-known in the education field as the creator of Kathy Schrock's Guide for Educators, an extensive Web site she started in 1995 to help fellow educators identify curriculum-related Web resources. In early 1999 she partnered with Discovery Channel School to provide a well-rounded and robust site. Schrock is the author of numerous articles and reviews and many technology-infusion books for educators. She has been a speaker, both nationally and internationally, at dozens of technology and library conferences and has received numerous technology-related accolades including the Making IT Happen award from both ISTE and the Massachusetts CUE and selection as a Top Five Innovator in Education (along with Papert, Gates, Wozniak, and Jobs) by Tech & Learning magazine, and honored as the Rutgers University School of Communication, Information, and Library Studies Alumna of the Year.

Cathy Swan, Technology Integration Teacher, New Canaan Public Schools, CTCathy Swan has been the technology integration teacher at New Canaan High School since the program's 2002 inception, collaborating with classroom teachers to integrate technology into the existing curriculum and conducting training as needed for staff and students. Before that, she taught French and Spanish for 26 years. Swan is a Google certified teacher and a member of the district ICT team awarded honorable mentions in both the COSN Team Award 2010 and ISTE's Sylvia Charp Award for District Innovation in Technology, 2010. Since 2005, Swan has held a position on the board of the Connecticut Educators Computer Association (CECA). She has served on the New Canaan Public Schools Professional Development Team for the past decade where she is responsible for the planning and implementation of high school professional learning days and events throughout the school year. She is a member of the National Staff Development Council's Academy XVI. She has presented at various CT and NY districts, as well as at the Tech Forum, CoSN and CECA conferences on the topic of Web 2.0 technologies in education. Swan's program and district were featured in a 2010 Intel Blueprint publication as well as the 2010 CoSN Compendium.

Lisa Thumann, Educational Technology Specialist, Center for Mathematics, Science and Computer Education Rutgers University, NJFormerly a K-6 technology teacher, Lisa Thumann has been with the Center for Mathematics, Science and Computer Education at Rutgers University in New Jersey since 2002. As the center's senior specialist in educational technology, she facilitates professional development sessions on campus as well as travels throughout New Jersey helping teachers integrate technology into their classrooms. Her focus for the center is her 21st Century Learning Initiative and helping teachers to develop and participate in personal learning networks. Thumann also presents at State and National conferences such as Alan November's Building Learning Communities and ISTE (formally NECC). You can find her speaking annually for the NJ Association for Educational Technology and the NJ Educational Computing Cooperative. She has been the keynote presenter for the NJEA Technology Institutes and the NJETI 2010 Annual Conference and blogs regularly for Tech & Learning. You can read more about Lisa on her personal blog at ThumannResources.com.

Andy Zitoli, Principal, Millis Middle School Millis Public Schools, MAAndy Zitoli has been principal of Millis Middle School for the past 13 years. He is the father of three girls and the founder of No Sticks and Stones, an anti-bullying Web site.