Teacher Allie Weber helps students use computers during last year’s Tech Expo at the ShoWare Center. The event returns to the venue next Thursday, Jan. 19. HEIDI SANDERS, Kent Reporter

Teacher Allie Weber helps students use computers during last year’s Tech Expo at the ShoWare Center. The event returns to the venue next Thursday, Jan. 19. HEIDI SANDERS, Kent Reporter

Kent School District focuses on technology with expo, summit

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  • Thursday, January 12, 2017 4:29pm
  • News

The Kent School District will host two events to showcase the district’s commitment to technology.

The public is invited to the annual Technology Expo from 6-8:30 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 19, at the ShoWare Center. On Saturday, March 18, the district will host a Teaching and Learning Technology Vision Summit.

Both events are free to attend. Registration is required for the technology summit.

Technology Expo

The Technology Expo will feature more than 100 booths showcasing how students gain college and career skills through classroom projects using technology tools. More than 800 students and 130 teachers will demonstrate how technology is used in the classroom and what they have learned. Attendees will have the opportunity to experience the district’s technology integration by solving a problem, completing a task or building a device with student presenters.

Last year more than 4,200 people attended the expo.

Shuttles will run between Kent-Meridian High School, 10020 SE 256th St., and ShoWare Center, 625 W. James St., every 15 minutes from 5:50 to 9 p.m.

The event also highlights local businesses and organizations that support the use of technology in education. Blue Origin – a Kent-based aerospace manufacturer and spaceflight services company started by Amazon founder Jeff Bezos – is a new sponsor for the expo this year and will have booth at the event.

For more information about the expo, visit kent.k12.wa.us/domain/691.

Technology Summit

From 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., on Saturday, March 18, the district will bring together parents, teachers, students, principals, leadership, community members and business partners to help set the direction for how technology can best support teaching and learning. The Teaching and Learning Technology Vision Summit will be at Kentwood High School, 25800 164th Ave. SE, in Covington.

“This is really trying to create a better connectivity between technology and how it is used,” said Carmen Rahm, the Kent School District’s Chief Information Officer. “Making sure it is the teachers, the parents and the community that are saying this is the technology we need and this is how we are going to use it.”

Attendees will help develop a road map for technology use in and out of the classroom.

“We are still not at that point where we are utilizing it to the full potential,” Rahm said. “We really want to take the next step from technology driving what is happening in classrooms to what is happening in the classrooms driving technology.”

The summit will be facilitated by Jim Lengel, a teacher and author of books on education, communication and technology, and will focus on a day in the life of a 21st century student.

Participants will be divided into groups for discussion.

“What comes out of it all in the end is all the information we need to make this in to the vision,” Rahm said.

Rahm, who was executive director of technology and chief information officer at Seattle Public Schools before being hired by Kent last June, put on a similar technology summit in Seattle.

“It was hugely successful,” he said.

Organizers plan to cap attendance at the Kent’s summit around 120 people, so those interested in attending are encouraged to apply by Feb. 8.

Rahm said the district is not looking for participants with a strong technology background but individuals with a passion for student learning.

“We really do want your input,” Rahm said. “This is really all about us supporting what our stakeholders want and not the other way around.”

For more information or to register, visit kentschooldistrict.org/technologysummit.

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