Tonight: Can tech close 'achievement gap'?

Professionals involved with classroom technology will join in a panel discussion about whether technology can close the academic achievement gap at 7 p.m. Tuesday, March 27, at Woodside High School.

The school is located at 199 Churchill Ave. in unincorporated Woodside.

Scheduled panelists are:

■ Karen Cator, a former Apple Corp. director and now director of the U.S. Office of Educational Technology.

■ Neeru Khosla, the cofounder and executive director of the Palo Alto-based nonprofit CK-12 Foundation, which focuses on lowering the cost of textbooks.

■ Alan Louie, a partner with Imagine K12, an "incubator of new high-tech companies focused on K-12 education," according to an event announcement.

■ Principal David Reilly, who has expanded career technical education at Woodside High "in an effort to harness the potential of technology in a comprehensive high school setting," the announcement said.

The moderator, Betsy Corcoran, is a former journalist and cofounder of EdSurge, a "team of journalists, educators, and technologists dedicated to accelerating the adoption of education technology," according its website.

While the panel appears weighted in favor of classroom technology, Ms. Corcoran, in reply to a question of whether contrarian views would be represented, said: "I will do my best to ask a wide range of questions. Technology is certainly not always the answer. We will also make time for audience Q&A."

Charles Schmuck of the Peninsula College Fund, the event's host, added: "I firmly believe that there will be opposing views on this topic and you might be surprised in some cases where (they) come from. As a high school teacher myself, I know that technology is only part of the solution."

The event's sponsors are Kepler's Books of Menlo Park and Woodside High School.


Like this comment
Posted by Excellent!
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Mar 26, 2012 at 2:32 pm

I have been told that this is shaping up to be an incredible discussion and I have also been told to come early, and make sure you grab a seat. They probably should have planned to have this for two nights, or a larger space.

Like this comment
Posted by Warren
a resident of another community
on Mar 27, 2012 at 4:38 am

PCF is doing fabulous, inspirational work serving a population who may not attend college without financial support.
This evening's program goes beyond that to serve and educate all of us about the intersection of technology and education. I'm be early to get a seat!

Like this comment
Posted by Dad in MP
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Mar 27, 2012 at 12:28 pm

Looking forward to a great conversation as well as supporting a wonderful organization (PCF) doing great work in our community.

Like this comment
Posted by Norman
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Mar 27, 2012 at 8:01 pm

All studies lead to the tolerance of bad teachers producing education 'gaps'. No amount of technology will overcome the unions keeping incompetent teachers in their positions.

Like this comment
Posted by Some Guy
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Mar 28, 2012 at 9:12 am

The only thing that can close the achievement gap are good instructors.
It doesn't matter what tools you have if you're not a good instructor.

I have been in K-12 Technology for 10 years. Doesn't matter what tech I put in the teacher's hand if they aren't good at their job. And the truly good teachers, don't need ANYTHING but space to hold class.

Like this comment
Posted by R.Gordon
a resident of another community
on Mar 30, 2012 at 1:56 pm

SOME GUY......You are some guy. A voice of reason and practicality with a good sense of humor.
I get so tired of the usual defeatist and homespun spirit of the majority of the garden clubs and complaints from the elders here.
You are totally correct about good instructors and the achievement gap.

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