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Completed Programs

Appalachian Technology in Education Consortium

The Appalachian Technology in Education Consortium (ATEC) is a consortium of public and non-profit private organizations that provided research-based assistance and practical solutions to educators striving to integrate technology into the classroom. The ATEC was one of ten Regional Technology in Education Consortiums (RTEC) funded by the U.S. Department of Education. Each RTEC served a different area of the country we served Kentucky, Tennessee, Virginia and West Virginia but we all shared the same goal, which was to help educators select the best technology for their school and use that technology in practical and creative ways.

Partners in the ATEC included The EdVenture Group, CNA Corporation, the University of Memphis and the Appalachian Rural Systemic Initiative.

EdPace

ED PACE: Educational Development for Planning and Conducting Evaluations is one of ten evaluation projects funded by the US Department of Education to increase the capacity of states to design, conduct, and procure high-quality evaluations of educational technology. EdPace partners include the West Virginia Department of Education, ROCKMAN ET AL, The EdVenture Group, WVEIS, West Virginia Virtual School and SETDA.

The goals of the project are to provide empirical data on student achievement in virtual foreign language courses using a quasi-experimental design and develop a framework for scientifically based research that can be used at the local, state, and national level to measure the impact of technology enhanced programs on student achievement.

The EdVenture Group has participated in numerous capacities during the grant implementation. One of the major roles has been to build meaningful capacity (not requiring statisticians and sociologists) for future evaluative tasks among all educators through the development of a training model that enables classroom teachers to conduct evaluations, create assessment instruments, and understand the elements of scientifically based research. The EdVenture Group staff has also conducted classroom observations and evaluations during the course of this grant.

GLOBE

GLOBE is a worldwide hands-on, primary and secondary school-based education and science program.
GLOBE
( Global Learning and Observations to Benefit the Environment)

GLOBE is a cooperative effort of schools, led in the United States by a federal interagency program sponsored by NASA, NSF, EPA and the U.S. Department of State, in partnership with over 140 colleges and universities, state and local school systems, and non-government organizations such as The EdVenture Group. Internationally, GLOBE is a partnership between the United States and 101 other countries.

Over a million primary and secondary students in more than 12,000 schools have taken part in the program since its creation in 1995; there are more than 20,000 GLOBE-trained teachers and those numbers are growing!

GLOBE improves student understanding of science because it involves them in performing real science - taking measurements, analyzing data, and collaborating in research with scientists.

iRule

In July 1999, the National White Collar Crime Center and the National Cyber crime Training Partnership provided $25,000 to develop an Internet curriculum that addressed computer crime issues and consequences. A subject matter expert panel was selected and the Internet curriculum was designed. West Virginia subject matter teachers were then selected and the classroom curriculum was developed. The result was, iRule: Internet safety rules. This is a 204-page manual that covered the history of the Internet, the Internet as a global perspective, Internet dangers, legality of the Internet, privacy on the Internet, and reporting Internet crimes.

After development, iRule was beta tested in 51 public and 10 private West Virginia schools. A thorough review by state teachers and the WV Department of Education was also completed. A total of 64 teachers were trained on the curriculum with an overwhelming response. These trained teachers returned to their counties and schools to train an additional 750+ teachers and test the curriculum in hundreds of classrooms in WV. A 'Train the Trainer' program was in place whereby the trainers train teachers and the teachers become trainers themselves, then teaching the curriculum to the students. A crucial part of the curriculum was the "Caught in the Web: Staying Safe in Cyberspace" videos and Internet safety brochures which were provided by The SAFECO Corporation at a minimal cost.

The EdVenture Group is proposing the transfer of the entire iRule curriculum to a web-based format that will allow educators to access the manual and classroom activities from anywhere in the world. It is also perceived that once on the Web, the curriculum will be accessible to not only West Virginians, but also to homes and classrooms across the nation
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LEAD

The LEAD (Learning Education Administration from a Distance) project was funded by a $1.2 million State Challenge Grant for Leadership Development by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. West Virginia was the 12th state to be awarded funding in 2001 for this project that provided superintendents and principals in public and private schools with access to quality leadership development focused on whole systems change and technology integration. The West Virginia Department of Education, Office of Technology, and The EdVenture Group partnered in the administration and implementation of this grant.

During the fall 2003-Spring 2004, West Virginia Administrators who successfully completed the requirements of the original LEAD project, were invited to attend a two-day training session, with instruction focused on increasing personal technology productivity skills applying emerging technologies, implementing data-based decision making for increased accountability, and utilizing handheld computers as an observation and evaluation tool for West Virginia professional teacher evaluations. Administrators implemented the technology leadership skills previously developed in the Gates LEADership Academies to explore the possibilities of enhancing learning, teaching, peer mentoring and leadership through handheld computers.

Phase 9

Phase 9 is a rigorous and effective professional development program that fosters the appropriate integration of technology, curriculum, teaching strategies, learning activities and student evaluation. Used since 1998 in classrooms across West Virginia and Pennsylvania, Phase 9 has impacted more than 10,000 teachers and has been proven to positively impact teacher technology integration as well as student test scores.

The Phase 9 program includes two five-day workshops for teachers. The first workshop focuses on ISTE Standards and classroom application of these standards. During the second five-day workshop teams of teachers create technology integrated units of instruction. Both encompass hands-on training and the use of a teacher created web site, The Solution Site http://www.thesolutionsite.com, for technology integration projects and lesson plans. Each team is required to create two instructional units that must integrate technology, subject areas and follow the constructivist theory of learning.

The History of Phase 9

Phase 9 began as "The West Virginia Turnkey Solution" in 1998 through funding from the US Department of Education's Technology Innovation Challenge Grant program. The project during it's original five-year period has impacted more than 10,000 West Virginia teachers. The project focused on statewide high-quality professional development that fostered the appropriate integration of technology, curriculum, teaching strategies, learning activities and student evaluation. The partners of this initiative included the Marion County Board of Education, the WV Board of Education, the WV Department of Education, 55 local education agencies, The EdVenture Group, five institutions of higher education, profit and non-profit organizations.

The training component of The West Virginia Turnkey Solution continues in Phase 9, which included a one-day training seminar for administrators and a five-day integration workshop for teams of three teachers. Both encompass hands-on training and the use of teacher created web site, The Solution Site (http://www.thesolutionsite.com) for technology integration projects and lesson plans. More than 545 teams were trained by the end of the five-year grant period.

The result of the Phase 9 teacher and administrator training components that Phase 9 teams provide continues to increase the levels of comfort, usage and integration of technology in the classroom by West Virginia educators, West Virginia's teachers have received not only the tools necessary to integrate technology in the classroom, but also on-going hands-on training, materials and resources that are necessary to accomplish the task.

Phase 9 Evaluation Report.

School Technology Team Seminars

During the 2005-2006 school year, The EdVenture Group and the WVDE partnered to introduce schools to the new online Five-year Strategic Plan adopted by the state of West Virginia. Hands-on professional development was provided to transition and revise plans from the OPTimal format to the new technology plan format within the Strategic Plan. School technology teams consist of an administrator and at least one teacher from each school.

The school technology seminars were offered regionally throughout the state, as determined by responses from all West Virginia county superintendents and technology coordinators, on a first-come, first-serve basis. Seminars were one-day in length and covered topics related to technology planning, as determined by state and national guidelines, Ed Tech requirements, and E-Rate requirements. Also covered were strategies for alignment within the school’s Five-Year Strategic Plan. A comprehensive and thorough evaluation process was conducted for each school by the trainers utilizing the compliance checklist mandated by WV Board Policy.

The EdVenture Group, WVDE, and the team of technology planning teacher-leaders were able to provide professional development to 438 WV schools. In addition, 52 out of 55 WV counties participated in the seminars, including the 31 counties that had 100% school participation.

Technology Standards for Teachers

The Technology Standards for Teachers courses were designed to provide West Virginia teachers with the opportunity to develop proficiency and critical judgment in computer-based applications in curriculum, teaching-learning activities and student assessment. The primary attention was to provide the participant the opportunity to develop an awareness of how technology can be used in the classroom. The course addressed each of the technology standards set forth by WV State Board Policy 5100 and prepared participants to train other teachers in these standards.

Participants learned in a practical, hands-on approach the skills necessary to utilize technology effectively in the classroom, including word processing, spreadsheets, Internet-based applications, multimedia, hardware, web development, troubleshooting and the use of peripherals. Graduate and undergraduate credit was available through participating universities. Basic and Advanced levels were offered. Successful completion of a Basic or Advanced Technology Standards for Teachers course was a prerequisite for application to participate in Phase 9.

Tech Transition

The Tech Transition project targeted displaced workers in West Virginia communities. Lydotta Taylor, former vice president of education at the West Virginia High Technology Consortium Foundation, designed this program in 1998 in response to high unemployment in the region and growing interest in the TOC's and more specialized training. Ms. Taylor, the President of The EdVenture Group, and Dr. John Atkins began working with West Virginia University and Fairmont State College to develop course content and job placement strategies for participants. The resulting courses, Introduction to Computers, Microsoft Skills certificate program and LAN were designed to meet the local demand for much-needed information technology skills and were offered for free college credit.

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Curriculum Development
Professional Development and Training
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