ISTE 2016 Lead & Transform Town Hall to Explore Leadership for Empowering Students

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Education leaders, students share perspectives on the intersection of leadership, learning and digital age tools

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This year’s Lead & Transform Town Hall brings together a wide range of participants with varying viewpoints to take a deep dive into how to best leverage leadership and digital age tools to support student empowerment in schools.

Education leaders and students will explore the topic of student empowerment at Lead & Transform: An ISTE 2016 Town Hall at the 2016 conference of the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE®). At this year’s Lead & Transform Town Hall, superintendents, chief technology officers, chief information officers, principals and other education leaders will discuss strategies for engaging stakeholders to support a digital age vision for students and communities. The ISTE 2016 Lead &Transform Town Hall will take place Sunday, June 26, from 8:30-10:30 a.m. in Denver.

“We know that empowerment plays a critical role in student success,” said ISTE CEO Brian Lewis. “This year’s Lead & Transform Town Hall brings together a wide range of participants with varying viewpoints to take a deep dive into how to best leverage leadership and digital age tools to support student empowerment in schools."

The Town Hall’s opening keynote on strategies for empowering students in the digital age will be delivered by Don Haddad, Ed.D., superintendent, St. Vrain Valley Schools in Longmont, Colorado. Superintendent at St. Vrain Valley Schools since 2009, Haddad was named National Superintendent of the Year by the National Association of School Superintendents in 2013 and was among 100 U.S. superintendents invited to participate in the Connected Superintendents Summit at the White House in 2014. St. Vrain was among 16 U.S. districts to earn the prestigious Race To The Top Grant, which awarded St. Vrain $16.6 million for STEM programming. Additionally, the district won a highly competitive Invest in Innovation (i3) federal grant of $3.6 million, the highest award in the nation.

Following Haddad’s remarks, a panel of five education leaders from around the country will share their perspectives. Panelists include Darryl Adams, Ph.D., superintendent, Coachella Valley School District, Thermal, California; Frances Gipson, Ph.D., chief academic officer, Los Angeles Unified School District; Winston Sakurai, Ed.D., principal, Hanalani Schools, Mililani, Hawaii, and former vice chairman of the Hawaii State Board of Education; and Steve Schultz, superintendent, Mesa County Valley School District, Grand Junction, Colorado.

Other highlights from the Town Hall include:

  • St. Vrain Valley Schools students will share what student empowerment means to them, how digital tools can support student empowerment, and what they would like school leaders to know and do in order to help students feel more empowered.
  • Bob Wise, president of the Alliance for Excellent Education and former Governor of West Virginia, will share the lessons learned from the Future Ready Schools Initiative, a project led by the Alliance that focused on helping school districts plan and effectively use technology and digital learning.
  • A Town Hall Q&A panel will focus on the balancing act required to support student empowerment and autonomy. Panelists include Bobby Dodd, principal, Gahanna Lincoln High School, Ohio; Phil Hickman, Ph.D., superintendent, Columbus Municipal School District, Columbus, Mississippi; Rebecca Midles, executive director of performance based systems, Mesa County Valley School District; Regina Renaldi, assistant superintendent of priority programs and area three, St. Vrain Valley Schools; and Glen Robbins, principal, Northfield Community Middle School, New Jersey.

Part idea incubator and part collaborative workspace, the ISTE Annual Conference & Expo is the epicenter for leading-edge thinking about the thoughtful and appropriate integration of technology in learning and teaching. It's where educators and education leaders share discoveries and develop solutions for their greatest challenges – all while connecting with a global network of education resources. Additional information about ISTE 2016 is available at

About ISTE

The International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE®) is the premier nonprofit membership organization serving educators and education leaders committed to empowering connected learners in a connected world. ISTE serves more than 100,000 education stakeholders throughout the world.

Innovative offerings include the ISTE Conference & Expo – the world’s most comprehensive ed tech event – as well as the widely adopted ISTE Standards for learning, teaching and leading in the digital age. The organization’s robust suite of professional learning resources feature online courses, consulting services for schools and districts, books, and peer-reviewed journals and publications. For more information, visit Connect with ISTE via Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.

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Lisa Wolfe
L. Wolfe Communications for ISTE
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