Energized. Encouraged. Resolute.

These words sum up my travel experiences so far in 2018 and we are only one month in!

Last week Shannon, Cy, and I attended the Future of Education Technology Conference, commonly known as FETC. My big takeaway from this conference was that empowering and growing our network of partners is the key to scale in bringing interoperability to ALL of our schools, teachers and students.  At the conference I was energized to see that a group of Ed-Fi adopters came together to present on their collaborative models to serve ALL of their member districts and on how they share learnings to accelerate their efforts with each other across the nation. What’s more impressive is that these presenters, folks from Michigan, Oregon and Florida, came together on their own as peer leaders, and exemplars for sharing what works. This is a true testament to the power of the Ed-Fi Community that enables lasting connections with like-minded leaders. Additionally we spent quality time with our peers on the Amazon Web Services Education team, rolling up our sleeves to create a way to offer choices to agencies through the AWS marketplace which  accelerates and empowers innovative vendors and providers. Truly exciting work!

This week Shannon and I were off to sunny Florida for the FLCODE Summit, hosted by NEFEC. What was deeply encouraging about this event is that it was the second year of a regional convening of leaders from both agencies and vendor/providers, and attendance was up 38%, all focused on building upon efforts and driving where to go next! This kind of growth shows that there is a need for simplified data infrastructure tools and that data-driven classrooms are a priority for school districts in Florida. I encourage you to read more about the fantastic work and vision that NEFEC and FL CODE is bringing to millions of students throughout their state. The common denominator from the caliber of people and organizations in the Ed-Fi Community and that we are continually bringing into the fold, is that we are resolute in our goal and commitment to bring the promise of interoperability to each learner, educator, and system. To quote Dr. Saunders from Arkansas ADE about this mission, “Oh… we’re doing this. We are going to do this.”

Want to know where I’m headed next? Check out our conference schedule here and follow me on Twitter @seanmcasey.