Four things I learned this week: 

  1. Everything you need to know you can learn from middle schoolers. 
  2. When you think you know why kids aren’t coming to school, dig deeper.
  3. Other countries are outspending the United States on supplemental education big time, and they have the hagwons, or “cram schools,” to prove it.
  4. A new term, slightly disconcerting but I’m pretty sure I have one; a screenager! 

As we are pulling together our keynote line up, we’ve been having fascinating conversations with our speakers. Personally, I have learned a lot just in these preliminary discussions (see aforementioned list), which is why I am thrilled to bring them to our Ed-Fi Community at Exchange Live in just a few weeks. 

As always with our keynote speakers, our hope is to inspire the Ed-Fi Community; and to present you with new information, new approaches or just a new perspective to consider. We are all juggling a million priorities and it can be easy to feel like we’re just treading water, especially this year. Taking time out to listen to what someone else is working on, what others are feeling and doing can be a relief and an inspiration. I feel confident that all three of our keynote speakers will hit the mark this year and we’ll all leave having been richer for the conversation and for the experience. 

I hope you’ll join me in welcoming these three awesome leaders in education! 

Mr. Alejandro Diasgranados
Alejandro Diasgranados is a fourth- and fifth-grade teacher at Aiton Elementary School, located in Ward 7 of the District of Columbia. He was selected as the 2021 DC Teacher of the Year and National Teacher of the Year Finalist. Alejandro has an amazing spirit and energy which he brings to his students and to his community. You can read his entire bio here, but what struck me most was his story about collecting data and using that to identify the heart of the problem and to quickly find a solution. You can also take a peak at this recent recognition as well. 

Dr. Tamey Williams-Hill
Dr. Williams-Hill is currently serving as the Project Director, Equity & Inclusion Specialist at the Austin Independent School District’s Office of Equity. Dr. Williams-Hill started her career in education teaching middle school, which is hands-down the best training for all other administrative roles within a school district! Through her community and professional service for the past 18 years, she has been on a mission to support students, community, teachers, and administrators  to break down the silos between the classroom and administrative roles. She cares deeply about using data to inform the work of AISD’s Office of Equity. 

Alejandro and Tamey will be joining our own Maureen Wentworth on Day One of Exchange Live at 10am CT, where they will have an in-depth discussion on the use of data in the classroom, what it looks like this year and what it should look like in the future.

Day Two of Exchange Live at 10am, Troy Wheeler will welcome Ben Wallerstein for a discussion on the intersection of data and the five factors changing the landscape of EdTech. 

Mr. Ben Wallerstein
Ben Wallerstein is the CEO and Co-Founder of Whiteboard Advisors, advising the most transformative companies and investors in education, health, and wellness on complex policy challenges and communications strategy. Most recently Ben authored this article in TechCrunch predicting the eventual consumerization of ed tech and opining on the future of the screenager. 

If you haven’t registered for Exchange Live 2021 yet, now is the time. We’re only a few weeks away and you don’t want to miss out.

Register Today! 


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