Press Release

SETDA Contact:
Stacey Finkel
Widmeyer Communications

SIIA PR Contact:
Beth Dozier
Rational 360

SIIA Contact:
Eileen Bramlet
VP Communications

netTrekker Contact:
Laura Hannah
Brand Marketing Manager
For Immediate Release
June 16, 2009
Role of Technology in Transforming Education Highlighted in Capitol Hill Showcase
Hands-on Exhibits and Teacher Presentations Engage Members of Congress and Education Stakeholders on the Future of Learning

WASHINGTON, D.C. — June 16, 2009 — Members of Congress and education reformers were among hundreds gathered on Capitol Hill today to experience firsthand cutting-edge education technology as it is being used in some schools across the country. The showcase, Bringing the Future of Learning to Schools Today, hosted by the State Educational Technology Directors Association (SETDA) and the Software & Information Industry Association (SIIA), was an opportunity for policymakers and education leaders to examine how technology is transforming our education system and the vital role it plays in keeping America globally competitive.

Attendees explored the latest education technologies, including interactive white boards, virtual frog dissection, online teacher training and courses, video streaming clips, and math and reading software and simulations. The showcase's learning environments and hands-on kiosks emphasized how technology can help better address education's timeliest issues, such as data-driven decision making through online assessment, personalized learning and differentiated instruction through instructional software and distance learning, and teacher quality through online training and ongoing virtual professional communities. "The Capitol Hill showcase reflected an increased understanding that classroom technology and innovation are essential to the future of learning and American competitiveness," said Mark Schneiderman, Senior Director of Education Policy for SIIA, a co-host of the showcase. "Without the types of technology we saw today, America simply won't be able to guarantee that our students — and our nation — can continue to lead in the global economy. SIIA calls on policymakers to provide the investment and leadership necessary to ensure our schools and educators have the innovative tools demonstrated today — tools that promise a world-leading education for all students."

"As we gather more and more solid data on the results of the federal Enhancing Education Through Technology (EETT) program on student learning, it becomes increasingly essential that companies, policymakers, and educators work together to further integrate technology into schools," said Mary Ann Wolf, Executive Director of SETDA, a co-host of the showcase. "States are embracing technology as a way to positively impact student achievement. For example, in South Carolina, sustained professional development has encouraged the effective integration of technology to facilitate student achievement across the state." Members of Congress, including the Chairman of the House Education and Labor Committee, George Miller (CA), experienced firsthand the education technologies featured as part of the showcase. The technologies exhibited were from Apple Inc., Carnegie Learning, CAST, CTB McGraw-Hill, Discovery Education, eChalk, Educate Online, ESRI, ExplorOnline Learning, Florida Virtual School, Froguts, Intel, Oracle Education Foundation, PBS Teacherline, Pearson, PolyVision, Promethean, SAS, Scholastic Inc., School Improvement Network, SchoolNet, SMART Technologies, Thinkfinity - Verizon Foundation, Thinkronize, Tutor.com, and Wireless Generation. Participants were selected to represent the full depth and breadth of technology's role in improving teaching and learning.

The State Educational Technology Directors Association (SETDA) is the principal association representing the state directors for education technology. SETDA works in partnership with the U.S. Department of Education, education associations, and the corporate community in an effort to promote national leadership in education technology; provide professional development in educational leadership for members; and build partnerships and provide leadership to advance learning opportunities. SETDA's membership includes educational technology directors and staff from the state departments of education of all fifty states, the District of Columbia and American Samoa. More information on technology's role in 21st century education and workforce development policy can be found at SETDA's Class of 2020: Action Plan for Education project. This project includes the development of publications on broadband access for kids; science, technology, engineering, and mathematics; technology-based assessments; teacher professional development; and virtual learning opportunities.

About SIIA
The Software & Information Industry Association (SIIA) is the principal trade association for the software and digital content industry. SIIA provides global services in government relations, business development, corporate education and intellectual property protection to 500 leading software and information companies. For further information, visit www.siia.net.

About netTrekker

netTrekker is dedicated to enhancing the learning environment by providing highly effective technologies that deliver rich educational content to students and teachers in a safe, relevant, easy-to-use format. The netTrekker product portfolio includes educational search tool, netTrekker Search and personalized student workspace solution, igotta. netTrekker also provides solutions focused on professional development, global services and print-to-digital transition of education agencies and publishers. Founded in 1999, netTrekker is widely recognized as the first standards-based educational search tool and is currently serves millions of students and is present in over 18,000 K-12 public and private schools across U.S., Canada and Puerto Rico.