Edu-Tech / Edu-Tech Academics 2023

Margaritaville Palms Springs Resort, Palm Springs, CA
February 26, 2023 - February 28, 2023

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Edu-Tech & Edu-Tech Academics focuses on delivering real-world insights, first-hand experiences and practical ideas that have been tried by other districts. We know that implementing new technology solutions, updating classrooms and curriculum initiatives isn’t a one department job, but a collaboration of different departments. Our goal is for you to gain new concepts and approaches to yield positive results in your bottom line.

Edu-Tech and Edu-Tech Academics brings together the heads of Technology and Curriculum & Instruction from K-12 school districts. It provides a forum to collaborate, strategize and discover innovative ideas for the challenges faced by your district. We believe in creating a memorable, collaborative and effective experience focused on continuous improvement for technology and academics. Sit down with your peers in an intimate setting and learn new ideas and get help from your colleagues from other districts. Benchmark your solutions. Explore what true collaboration really is about.

The Summit Experience

Current as of February 23, 2023

1:00 pm


2:00 pm

Tour – Palm Springs Unified School District


Palm Springs Unified School District is a leader in drone technology and educational opportunities bringing hands-on construction, programming, and flight opportunities to our middle and high school students.


The tour will include PSUSD Esports program, specifically the Esports setup for the season finals. A brief overview of PSUSD Esports and the creation of the Desert Valley Esport Alliance. Participants will also see PSUSD Drone Soccer Setup with optional hands-on session.

5:30 pm

Welcome Cocktail Reception

6:30 pm

Opening Keynote


Start with Yes, Build Powerful Teams, Get Out of the Way

Insights and reflections from leading a forward-thinking, innovative school district.

Presented by

Dr. Mike Swize, Superintendent, Palm Springs Unified School District

7:30 pm

Dinner Reception

7:15 am

Breakfast & Itinerary Pick-Up

8:00 am

Opening Session

Presented by

Joe Way, PhD, CTS, Director, Learning Environments, Information Technology Services, University of Southern California

9:05 am

Roundtables & Refreshments

9:40 am

Roundtables & Refreshments

10:20 am



A Tale of Two Districts – Connecting the Wires to Student Outcomes

Presented by

Terrence Davis, Superintendent, Banning Unified School District



Creating a High Performing School System: Research Based Best Practices for Educators

Presented by

Dr. Edward Lee Vargas, Retired AASA Superintendent of the Year for CA and WA

10:50 am



Trauma-Informed Practices to Develop Safe and Supportive Learning Environments

Presented by

Julie Shivanonda, Director of Social Emotional Learning and Development, Tucson Unified School District



Moving from Dream to STEAM

Presented by

Berny Duke, Teacher, Van Independent School District

Jason Johnson, Chief Technology Officer, Van Independent School District

Karla Rainey, Director of Curriculum and Instruction, Van Independent School District

11:35 am


12:15 pm


12:50 pm


1:50 pm



Literacy Isn’t Just for the ELA Class

Presented by

Elizabeth Lalor, Deputy Superintendent for Educational Support and School Administration, Galena Park Independent School District



Tips for Navigating the Sea of Big Data

Travis Taylor, Ph.D., Instructional Technology Specialist, Little Rock School District

2:25 pm

Roundtables & Refreshments

3:05 pm

Roundtables & Refreshments

3:45 pm



Best Practices in Online Education: Let’s Explore the A.G.I.L.E (Advanced Global Interactive Learning Environment)

Presented by

Kahle Charles, Assistant Superintendent Assessment, Curriculum, and Instruction, St. Vrain Valley Schools



Key Pieces in Becoming an Innovative School District of Technology

Presetend by

David Whaley-Weems, Sr. Technology Director, Pecos Barstow Toyah Independent School District

4:15 pm

Fireside Chat

Presented by

Berj Akian, CEO, ClassLink

Dr. Cody Mize, Superintendent, Mineola Independent School District

Dr. Daisy Morales, Superintendent, Live Oak School District

5:05 pm

Cocktail Reception

7:00 pm

Networking Dinner

8:00 am


8:30 am



Proactively identifying Social and Emotional Barriers to Student Learning – Data Driven Counseling

Presented by

Jason C. Faulkner, Director of Accountability and Instruction, Laurel County Schools



Creating the Mousetrap: Knocking Down Barriers to Commercial Construction

Presented by

Mac Beaton, Director, Workforce & Career, Henrico County Public Schools

Beverly Cocke, Workforce & Career Development Specialist, Henrico County Public Schools

Susan Moore, Director of Construction & Maintenance, Henrico County Public Schools

9:05 am

Roundtables & Refreshments

9:45 am

Roundtables & Refreshments

10:25 am

Panel: Accessible, Inclusive & Equitable Learning Experiences for All Students


Kerry Fergason, Learning Management Systems Specialist, Education Service Center, Region 11

Elizabeth Lalor, Deputy Superintendent for Educational Support and School Administration, Galena Park Independent School District

Karla Rainey, Director of Curriculum and Instruction, Van Independent School District

Julie Shivanonda, Director of Social Emotional Learning and Development, Tucson Unified School District

David Whaley-Weems, Sr. Technology Director, Pecos Barstow Toyah Independent School District

11:15 am

Closing Lunch

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Margaritaville Palms Springs Resort
1600 N Indian Canyon Dr, Palm Springs, CA 92262

Edu-Tech and Edu-Tech Academics are invitation-only Summits for the heads of technology and curriculum and instruction from the largest school districts in the country. Registrations are complimentary via scholarships for school district administrators and include 2 nights of accommodations at the conference venue, meals, networking functions and access to all conference sessions. Solution providers are able to attend through sponsorship with a limit of three companies per category.

We welcome school district administrators and solution providers to be involved.

Technology Topics
Cyber Security: How to Address & Enforce • 1-to-1 Policies Across K-12 Education • Learning Management Systems: Evidence of Collaboration • Student Devices: Fees, Insurance & Finance • Tech Integrations with Curriculum & Instruction • IT Sustainability: Upgrading School Networks • Education Technology: Build Better Teaching • Learning Experiences to Achieve Higher Learning Outcome • Virtual & Augmented Reality: Unlimited Opportunities


Academics Topics
Experiential Learning: Real World Situations • Teacher Instruction & Self-Directed Activities: Blended Learning • Bite-Sized Learning • STEAM Curriculum • Self-Paced & Self-Chosen Projects: Genius Hour • Project-Based Learning • A Healthy Relationship with Digital Media: Digital Citizen • Gamification

  • Roundtable Collaboration Meetings:
    Edu-Tech and Edu-Tech Academics are designed to change the way school districts discover solutions. We provide the ability to learn about cutting-edge solutions with proven results used by other districts across the country. The relaxed atmosphere provides the opportunity to have open and candid conversations with senior executives to discuss industry trends and challenges. Prior to the meeting, attendees will make selections of the roundtable topics they choose to participate in based on their districts’ priorities and needs. The senior executives within the solution organizations moderate scheduled roundtables creating the opportunity for districts to share their challenges with those at the table and walk away with actionable information.

  • Exceptional Networking Opportunities
    We strive to maximize your face-to-face time by providing a multitude of avenues to engage the senior executives in attendance. The agenda incorporates cocktail receptions, networking lunches and a specially selected offsite dinner at a nearby venue. Leverage the meeting’s relaxed atmosphere and after hours networking activities to build strong personal relationships with current and future clients.

  • Adelanto Elementary School District
  • Allentown City School District
  • Amphitheater Public Schools
  • Austin Independent School District
  • Baltimore City Public Schools
  • Birmingham City Schools
  • Capistrano Unified School District
  • Clarksville-Montgomery County School District
  • Chico Unified School District
  • Deer Valley Unified School District
  • District of Columbia Public Schools
  • Fort Bend Independent School District
  • Galena Park ISD
  • Henrico County Public Schools
  • Mansfield Independent School District
  • Millard Public Schools
  • Olathe Public School #233
  • Orange Unified School District
  • Peoria Unified School District
  • Pflugerville ISD
  • Phoenix Coding Academy
  • Phoenix Union High School District
  • Pittsburgh Public Schools
  • Poudre School District
  • Prince Georges County Public Schools
  • Saratoga Springs City School District
  • Socorro Independent School District
  • Stafford County Public Schools
  • Tempe Union High School District
  • The School District of Osceola County
  • Toledo Public Schools
  • Washington County School District
  • Winston Salem/Forsyth County Schools

Attendee Breakdown

      I love that this conference brings together academics, technology & facilities. I love the format and intimate conference style. As a leader in my district, I find some “nuggets” to implement in my district. CTE Director

      Austin ISD

      It’s an experience that facilitates and encourages more substantive conversations with fellow attendees and the solution providers. CTO

      Albermarle County Public Schools

      Edu-Tech was a great forum to see emerging technology solutions, network with K-12 IT leaders around the country, and discover new ideas. Executive Director of IT

      Durham County Schools

      This conference is a quality event that allows curriculum, technology, and key vendors to collaborate with the goal of focusing on the needs of our schools. Taking solutions back to our school district always occur after attending these quality sessions. Director of Media & Instruction Tech

      School District of Osceola County

      At a typical tradeshow, you find yourself in a sea of vendors searching for ways to engage with potential customers to explain how you can provide value to their organizations. It can feel hurried and almost impossible to have a meaningful conversations. At Edu-Tech the roundtable meetings provide an opportunity to connect for real conversations in a relaxed fashion. In my experience attendees are engaged, open-minded, and looking to learn about what we have to offer and how it can impact their school districts. This event is a must for us every year. Sales Director


      One of the best conferences and opportunities to network outside of the district I have ever engaged in. Director of Technology

      Victoria Independent School District