Friday, June 21, 2013

We are headed to ISTE 2013! We would love for anyone attending ISTE to join us as we provide the background and highlights of the Hoover City Schools Engaged Learning Initiative from Hoover High School's perspective.
Here is the overview of the Engaged Learning Initiative

Hoover High School uses Instructional Technology as one way of enhancing the mission to prepare and inspire students for life-long success by teaching the skills, knowledge, and behaviors students will need as responsible citizens in the global community.  Students learn collaboration, communication, creativity, and critical thinking in a variety of ways throughout the school day. Excellence in education requires that technology is seamlessly integrated throughout the educational program. In an effort to increase access to those 21st century skills, HHS has made it a goal to offer students a 24/7 accessibility to their learning through this "Engaged Learning Initiative” (ELI). The individual use of technology is a way to empower students to maximize their full potential and to prepare them for college and the workplace.

Teachers implement transformational instructional strategies and individualization of student learning and performance through the use of technology in the classroom. This will be done with such strategies as flipping the classroom, empowering students with 1:1 technology, the use of social media, and the use of interactive applications that put the “work” of learning back on the students’ side of the table. The Engaged Learning Initiative will increase creativity, communication, collaboration, and critical thinking, as well as foster a positive student/teacher relationship.

Below is the outline of the session- What to Expect...

The Engaged Learning Initiative session will be set up in five parts with time for questions/answers following the presentation. The first presentation will be an overview and history of the Engaged Learning Initiative. This will be presented by Dr. Ron Dodson and Mr. Don Hulin. The purpose of the overview/history will be to give the background of the initiative and will also allow the participants to understand the philosophy behind the ELI.

The second portion of the presentation will deal with the planning, infrastructure requirements, device selection, and contract requirements, etc… that go along with a 1:1 initiative. This includes the “nuts and bolts” of the initiative including once a device is chosen, how to work with the company to ensure appropriate professional development is provided, etc… Brian Phillips and Keith Fulmer have been instrumental through this process and will provide valuable insight from the research of the device, to the ordering, to the budget planning, to the device security and identification process, to the professional development, to the technical problems, etc… They are involved in all aspects of the initiative.

The third portion of the presentation will deal with Professional Development. Mrs. Jennifer Hogan has been a key player from the beginning in the training and preparation of our teachers to use the iPads effectively in the classroom. She will give tips and ideas for successful implementation from day one and will also show the continued professional development that is required to keep this type of initiative moving in the right direction. This includes professional development days where teachers choose what they want to learn more about, embedded professional development in the school day, “Experts Down the Hall” where teachers observe other teachers and then share ideas and what they saw, “Hoover Techaneers”students providing peer and teacher professional development during the school day, Fun Fact Friday’s, HHSiBucs Blog, and even Tech Tailgates before a basketball game.

The fourth portion of the presentation will be the use of social media to increase connectedness in the high school setting. Dr. Holly Sutherland will highlight how Hoover High School uses Facebook, Twitter, and our Engaged Learning Initiative Blog to connect with each other as well as the Hoover community and the educational community around the world. Examples will be used and suggestions give on how to connect via social media in a positive way with students, parents, and the community. The importance of forming a PLN for teachers will also be addressed.

Following the first four parts of the presentation, Dr. Sutherland will lead a Skype session with a teacher and 2 Seniors at Hoover High School. They will give a brief bio of themselves and then we will take questions from the audience for the students. We will finish with a final question and answer session. We will also give all contact information for participants to send additional questions for clarity or more information.

A little about the presenters...

Bryan Phillips became the Chief Technology Officer for Hoover City Schools in 2010. As CTO, he provides visionary leadership and has the ability to articulate that vision in all areas of technology. He also is responsible for the overall management of the district network and the technology team. His prior experiences included serving Hoover City Schools as Network Administrator. In this capacity, Phillips implemented new networking projects in response to system needs, ensured maximum network uptime/performance and investigated new policies, procedures and hardware relative to network systems. Before that, Phillips served in the role of Instructional Technology Specialist/Technology Coach for the school system. In those capacities, he made recommendations to administrators/staff as how to best utilize technology budget finances, developed pilot tech programs and assisted various schools in website development/improvement. Phillips Taught at Oak Grove High School (Jefferson County School System) before coming to Hoover City Schools. There, he served in various instructional, athletic and technological capacities, winning Oak Grove’s Second Mile Teacher of the Year Award . Phillips received his BS in Elementary Education from the University of Alabama at Birmingham and his MS in Elementary Education from Samford University.

Keith Fulmer has been in the field of education for 25 years. For the last nine years he has have served as a curriculum technology specialist for Hoover city schools. Mr. Fulmer is currently responsible for training of around 300 Hoover High School staff members in the use of technology. Teachers are trained on the use of classroom hardware (projectors, document cameras, sound systems. Teacher training includes the use of grade and assessment software, curriculum specific software, remediation and credit recovery software on over 1000 desktop and laptop computers. Mr. Fulmer trains teachers to use Moodle and Access as a course management system and all teachers in the use of Edmodo. Mr. Fulmer also works with administrators and central office personnel to plan and coordinate how to incorporate and improve technology in Hoover City Schools. As part of his current responsibilities, are to work to train teachers to use iPads to improve student learning as we begin the Engaged Learning Initiative: a 1:1 student iPad initiative and he is co-creating a NETS training course for Hoover Teachers. Fulmer has his Masters in Education from University of Alabama.

Dr. Ron Dodson’s career in education spans more than two decades. During his eleven years in the classroom, he taught Biology, Chemistry, Astronomy and Theory of Knowledge. Dr. Dodson then moved on to administration, serving as assistant principal at two high schools before moving to a central office position as the secondary curriculum director. He currently serves in the capacity of assistant superintendent of instruction for the Hoover City Schools district, working with K-12 administrators, teachers, and other district leaders in the areas of curriculum, technology, and instructional programs. Over the course of his career, Dr. Dodson’s work has been recognized at the national level with the prestigious Milken Family Foundation’s National Educator Award and the Tandy Technology Scholar Award. In addition to his work in Hoover City Schools, Dr. Dodson serves as an adjunct instructor for the University of Alabama at Birmingham’s department of educational leadership.

Don Hulin is serving in his fifth year as principal of Hoover High School. He has 20 years of experience as a teacher, coach, and educational administrator. Mr. Hulin worked to make the Engaged Learning Initiative happen in the Hoover City School system by advocating to our superintendent and others about the importance of 1:1 technology in the classroom. He serves on the Superintendent’s Advisory Team and traveled to Westlake High School in Austin, Texas to learn more about their iPad Pilot Program. Mr. Hulin has worked with the State of Alabama on their ACCESS Distant Learning Reauthorization and has been instrumental in the implementation of Student Phone/Electronic Device Usage in Hoover as well. Mr. Hulin has his Educational Specialists Degree from the University of Montevallo and served in the United States Air Force.  Mrs. Jennifer Hogan is in her second year as Assistant Principal at Hoover High School.

Mrs. Hogan is serving in her 19th year as an educator. She has experience at the high school level as a science teacher, coach, assistant principal and principal. In her various professional roles, she has always had a passion for integrating technology in the classroom. She has been instrumental in the integration of Twitter and blogging into the classroom and is a valuable resource to the teachers at Hoover High School. She is integral to the continuous professional development offered at Hoover High and believes in teacher choice. Ms. Hogan received her Education Specialist degree in Educational Leadership from Samford University.

Dr. Holly Sutherland is her fifth year as Assistant Principal at Hoover High school and has 12 years of experience in education from K-12. Dr. Sutherland worked in the K-5 setting for 7 years before moving to Hoover High School as an administrator. Currently, Dr. Sutherland works with the Senior class at HHS, works with teacher professional development, works with college and career readiness, works with Professional Learning Communities and Vertical Interdisciplinary Process groups, and provides technology based Professional Development to teachers. Dr. Sutherland believes in using social media and technology to communicate with the parents and community of Hoover. This is demonstrated by her use of grade level Facebook pages, Twitter (#HHSiBucs, #Gr82BKing13), and the creating and updates to our Engaged Learning Initiative Blog (Http:// Dr. Sutherland has her doctorate from Samford University.

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