Joining superintendents and educators from school districts from Alaska to nearby Arlington, Virginia, Pleasant View Elementary School Principal Dr. Gara Field was one of two principals selected to present her school’s story of how technology is advancing student achievement.
The presentation was part of the White House Future Ready Superintendent’s Summit held on November 19 at the Eisenhower Executive Office Building next door to the Executive Mansion.
President Obama hosted the summit, called “ConnectED to the Future,” a convening with superintendents and other educators from across the country, who will lead their schools and districts in the transition to digital learning. The event builds on the momentum of the ConnectED Initiative, a five-year plan the President announced in 2013, to connect 99 percent of America’s students to high speed internet and empower teachers with the technology they need to transform teaching and learning.
“So closing the technology gap is going to take more than fiber optic cable. It’s going to take more than portable hotspots and wireless protectors,” the President said. “It will take more than policymakers in Washington or even Silicon Valley CEOs. It’s going to take teachers, principals, superintendents who get it – who understand the power of these tools when used creatively and who are willing to make changes and push reforms and test new ideas. And we want to help you do that.”
This fall, the Administration launched the Future Ready Pledge to help school districts develop a culture where teachers harness the power of technology to personalize learning and provide quality digital content that fosters student inquiry and creativity. During the event, President Obama hosted a digital pledge signing ceremony with more than 100 superintendents to be joined virtually by hundreds more across the country.
“Being one of two principals selected to present at the White House Future Ready Superintendent’s Summit was the honor of a lifetime,” said Field. “It was exciting to bring Panther PRIDE to Washington, DC to share how we’ve leveraged technology throughout the process of our successful school transformation. We will continue our purpose-driven work at Pleasant View with an emphasis on engagement, enrichment and enthusiasm. When the focus is on student-directed learning, growth is exponential, and the test scores take care of themselves.”
Since the President’s call to action in supporting the ConnectED Initiative, more than $4 billion in public and private funding has been committed toward expanding high-speed internet connectivity for America’s schools and libraries.