Virginia Society for Technology in Education

Board Blog

A Most Successful Year for VSTE

Posted by Laura Briggs on 06/30 at 10:50 PM

As VSTE completes another very successful year, we have the opportunity to reflect on the many successes that we achieved together over the course of the year.  I am extremely proud of VSTE’s achievements in so many areas:  from our continued emphasis on actively engaging our members, to the successful creation of VSTE’s first special interest group.  Over the past year VSTE was able to continue fulfilling its mission in many ways, and all of these are accomplishments that each and every person in our leadership should be incredibly proud of.

During this past year, we undertook and strengthened a number of initiatives to help keep VSTE at the forefront of EdTech, through both the entire organization, and through its committees:

- Board members planned and participated in monthly webinars.
- Board members participated in ongoing development of partnership opportunities.
- Board members helped plan and participated in regional PD one-day conferences throughout Virginia.
- Board members created and approved SIG guidelines for SIG creation and participation, as well as participated in webinar training so there could be additional hosts for monthly or SIG events.
- Board members participated in creating a Board weblog on the main VSTE website.
- Board members successfully created Committee Charters for setting yearly goals, missions and purposes, committee responsibilities, plans for webpage presence, and timelines for activities throughout the year.
- Board members participated as judges for the first Student Technology Integration Challenge (STIC) before the December Conference.
- Board members planned, presented, and participated at the first Digital Sandbox before and during the December Conference.
- Board members were highly visible and thoroughly involved at the December 2011 Conference, including presenting concurrent sessions and volunteering in many areas.

Under the leadership of James Maxlow, the VSTE Elections Committee solicited board candidates, chose a potential slate and had it adopted by the Board, and oversaw the election. We would like to welcome our new Board members.

With the leadership of John Hendron, VSTE’s Innovations Committee Chairperson, the Innovations Committee conducted research for white papers, held a webinar in May, 2012, recognized an outstanding innovative educator, Matt Dunleavy, from Radford University, and formed first VSTE SIG focused on mobile learning.

The VSTE Awards Committee, with the leadership of Janene Gorham, coordinated selection of the VSTE Teacher (Kristina Peck, Spotsylvania County Schools) and Leader Award (Tom Woodward, Henrico County Schools) by the Board, and submitted nominations for ISTE Teacher and Leader Awards, coordinated the selection of VSTE awards , VSTE Hero Award (Tim Stahmer, Fairfax County Schools) and ISTE’s Making it Happen Award (Janene Gorham,  Virginia Beach City Schools). The Awards Committee also refined the Board Policy and Procedures regarding VSTE Awards.

Under the leadership of Vicki Fawcett-Adams, Education Committee Chairperson, the Education Committee created very successful professional development opportunities throughout the year, including creating the monthly webinar schedule, facilitating webinars, and assisting with other events throughout the year.

VSTE’s Membership Committee, lead by Tim Owens, surveyed Membership from May - November and used survey responses to change ongoing operations as well as to make changes the survey to drive improved feedback from the VSTE membership. The committee used social networking which has resulted in our getting new followers daily on FaceBook, Twitter and the VSTE Ning.

Under the leadership of Heather Blanton, the VSTE Advocacy Committee held advocacy sessions at the December 2011 Conference and continued to encourage VSTE members to join the EdTech Action Network to support educational technology.

All of our Board members should be very proud of their work for VSTE this year. Their collaboration, involvement, and dedication have helped VSTE continue to grow and be at the forefront of educational technology leadership in the Commonwealth. I would like to thank them for all that they do and continue to do for the organization and its members.

I would also like to thank the VSTE Conference Committee. We are very excited about the upcoming conference in Virginia Beach in December 2012. The Conference Committee works passionately all year round to bring the best learning and networking opportunities to our members and community.

I would like to take this opportunity to give my heartfelt thanks to our members, staff, partners, and sponsors for all the contributions in keeping VSTE at the forefront of EdTech.  It is the people who make the difference, and through collaboration and support of each other, VSTE will continue to promote excellence and always be an influence in technological innovation in education.

Laura Briggs
Chairperson, VSTE Board of Directors


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