FETC 2023: Digital Transformation and Innovation

(Image credit: FETC)

It’s the most wonderful time of the year - edtech conference season! So, what better way to start the year than with a trip to the Big Easy? Known for its music, nightlife, beignets, and Bourbon Street, New Orleans will soon be known for FETC 2023. With its theme of “Innovate, Imperative Learning for the Future,” attendees will experience how innovation and creativity can result in digital transformations in our classrooms and schools. 

Keynote Speakers 

FETC's mission to deliver strategies and best practices for student success and schoolwide advancement is evident in its packed four-day conference. Attendees will be lining up early on Tuesday and Wednesday to hear from the much-anticipated world-renowned keynote speakers Daniel Burrus and Dr. Anne-Marie Imafidon. Their thought-provoking messages of digital transformation in edtech and inclusivity for future leaders will resonate with the audience as we move into a new era of digital learning.   

Session Tracks 

Introduced a few years ago, session tracks will allow attendees to collaborate in role-specific sessions. Attendees would be hard-pressed not to find like-minded colleagues with the five tailored edtech tracks: Administrator, Information Technology, Educator, Library Media Specialist, and Coach. 

Featured presenters that promise to deliver solutions and strategies that address current and future edtech challenges include: 

- “Tools Administrators Use to Support Transition from Classroom Consumers to Creators,” presented by Greg Bagby 

- “Creating Your IT Culture Around the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion” with Diane Doersch and Dr. Monica Burns 

- “20 Tips to Transform Assessment and Take Action.” 

Some of my not-to-be-missed sessions are the coach sessions with Mario and Alberto Herraez-Velazquez and library media specialist sessions with Lauren Mobley.   

Expo Hall 

From live educator presentations, interactive demonstrations, swag to bring home to colleagues, and the famous FETC coffee mug, the Expo is the place to be between workshops, sessions, summits, and sponsored events. This expansive space of solution providers from over eleven different countries is an ideal opportunity for educators and administrators to share their challenges and successes and find ways to partner with educators and administrators. 


Also located in the Expo are six innovative, content-focused theaters set up for the conference: Information Technology, Technology Discovery, Thought Leader, Esports, STEM, and Pitchfest. 

Theaters such as Information Technology and Technology Discovery will focus on edtech trends and the newest technology for school districts. At the same time, the Thought Leader provides strategies for administrators on well-being, policy, and school management. 

Two of the most well-attended theaters are Esports and STEM. These hands-on events focusing on student agency and engagement will show strategies for implementing them in classrooms and districts. 

Finally, if you want to see what young innovative startups are disrupting edtech for future generations of students, make sure you hit the all-new Pitchfest theater and the Startup Pavilion. After many years of attending FETC, this event has always been at the top of my list. Some of our leading edtech solution providers have gotten their big break at this FETC event.  

Tech Share Live 

While there is so much more to experience at FETC 2023, I would be remiss if I did not highlight the FETC fan-favorite, Tech Share Live. Known as the gurus of edtech, Adam Bellows, Leslie Fisher, Hall Davison, and Kathy Schrock engage their audience with song and humor as they highlight edtech innovations. Its unique, fast-paced session gives attendees a first look at the latest, most exciting gadgets, apps, hardware, and pedagogical strategies. AI, game-based learning, robotics, inclusivity tools, online learning, video editing, literacy, and AR/VR/XR. 

While I will miss packing my flip-flops for Orlando, I am excited to experience FETC in NOLA. Having been to the ISTE Live 2022 at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center, attendees will enjoy the large session rooms, food courts, and power stations galore. But, most importantly, this venue is where we will all reconnect with each other and leave with renewed energy and a stomach full of New Orleans beignets and Cajun gumbo.