BCPS leadership in advancing technology wins national Digital Innovation in Learning Award

Superintendent Dance, S.T.A.T. program to be recognized at Nov. 21 ceremony in California

Led by Superintendent Dallas Dance, the BCPS initiative to incorporate digital technology into everything from classroom learning to community communications has earned a national Digital Innovation in Learning Award (DILA).

The “Walk the Walk” award, one of 15 DILA awards from national educational technology organizations EdSurge and Digital Promise, will be presented to Dr. Dance and BCPS during a two-day Silicon Valley Summit on Nov. 21-22 at the Computer History Museum in Mountain View, Calif.

In addition, another new technology-based BCPS program, “Parent University,” received an “honorable mention” in the “We Are Family” category of the DILA awards. Parent University provides centralized, online access to resources that support parents in guiding their children to academic success and enhancing personal growth and family wellness. The project also sponsors workshops, lectures, and other activities that further family and student support.

The “Walk the Walk” award recognized Dr. Dance for “(leading) by example by demonstrating (his) own meaningful use of technology.” The award was based on a variety of innovations in BCPS, including outreach by the superintendent and district through social media, the district’s mobile app, blog, RSS feeds, and weekly e-newsletter.

The award also recognizes the startup of S.T.A.T. as the centerpiece of the BCPS effort to use digital technology to impact learning. S.T.A.T. stands for “Students and Teachers Accessing Tomorrow” and seeks to transform Baltimore County’s classrooms into complete 21st century learning environments through a variety of interlocking digital components designed to ensure that BCPS graduates are technologically proficient and globally competitive.

“These are recognitions that all of Team BCPS can be proud of and can take credit for,” said Dr. Dance. “From the parents who are learning how to navigate and use BCPS One to the educators who are creating a digitally-supportive curriculum to the students in our Lighthouse Schools who are using their personal two-in-one laptop and tablet devices to progress every day.

“These awards also recognize the reality of the world we live in today. Schools that are fully integrated with technology and students who are digital natives are no longer the future. They are the norm now, and I’m gratified that BCPS has become a leader in providing the tools that every one of our students needs to succeed in our fast-moving, electronic world.”

This is the first year for the DILA awards, which celebrate teachers, administrators, and ed-tech organizations who demonstrate exemplary practices in using technology to support learning.  EdSurge received more than 1,500 nominations from the U.S. and 31 other nations, including 550 video submissions.

EdSurge is a leading information and resource site for educators, entrepreneurs, and investors involved in educational technology. It covers news of the industry, hosts events, and generates reports relating to the intersection of education and technology. Digital Promise is a nonprofit organization authorized by Congress to spur innovation to advance the opportunity for all Americans to learn.

For more information, please visit: http://awards.edsurge.com/.