Report aims to 'untangle' conflicting research on early learning programs

Educationdive | January 31, 2019

It’s easy for educators following research on early-childhood education to get confused. District and school leaders that want to add or expand on-site preschool programs may especially be wondering how to best design a program when one study points to the lasting benefits of preschool and another seems to contradict it.A new report from the Learning Policy Institute (LPI) seeks to clarify what sometimes feels like conflicting research on early learning programs, especially those that are publicly funded. “Untangling the Evidence on Preschool Effectiveness: Insights for Policymakers” includes a comprehensive review of existing studies and highlights what specific benefits — such as literacy and math skills, placement in special education and grade retention — they were able to measure. “Sorting out these findings requires an examination of the way that different studies construct comparison groups — whether children in those groups are truly comparable to the children who attended the preschool program under study and whether they themselves attended a different preschool,” the authors write.The report, however, also focuses more specifically on two studies that found disappointing results for children who participated in a particular model. The first is Head Start — a 2012 impact study showed that by the time former Head Start students reached 1st grade, most were not performing noticeably better in school than a sample of similar children from low-income families that did not attend the program, which provides early-childhood education and other resources to this student population and their families.

Spotlight

Throughout the country, major school districts are facing sharp student enrollment declines.All it takes is one look at the numbers:6 million students attended charter schools in 2014.73 percent of rural districts in Wisconsin lost students in the 2013-2014 school year, and that trend continues.

Spotlight

Throughout the country, major school districts are facing sharp student enrollment declines.All it takes is one look at the numbers:6 million students attended charter schools in 2014.73 percent of rural districts in Wisconsin lost students in the 2013-2014 school year, and that trend continues.

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EDUCATION TECHNOLOGY

NTU Singapore steps into the future with Microsoft cloud-enabled Smart Campus

Microsoft | February 14, 2022

Nanyang Technological University, Singapore, a research-intensive public university ranked among the world's top universities, has partnered with Microsoft to fuel innovation and transform the future of education with its cloud-enabled Smart Campus. With a digital-first strategy and the adoption of technologies such as Microsoft 365 and Microsoft Teams Phone, NTU Singapore is set to accelerate innovation and thrive amid the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond. As of January 2022, NTU has successfully converted over 2,600 fixed phone numbers, to the Microsoft Teams Phone system. With the cloud-based phone system, calls become richer and more collaborative, as NTU employees can make and receive calls on their business number from all their internet-enabled devices, while using the same tool they use to chat and host video meetings. In addition to cost savings for the University, employees remain productive, as they can also seamlessly transfer their calls across multiple devices, including laptops, PCs, tablets and mobile phones. The cloud-based phone system was adopted in 2019, when NTU rolled out Microsoft 365, which includes Microsoft Teams Phone, enabling hybrid learning and remote work. At the height of the pandemic in the first quarter of 2020, the transformation to Microsoft 365 enabled the University to successfully shift within one week from more than 1,000 in-person lessons weekly to online learning for 30,000 students. Ms Tan Aik Na, Senior Vice President for Administration at NTU Singapore said, "Innovation has always been core to the University's DNA. This digital transformation in partnership with Microsoft marks a significant milestone in our commitment to embrace a culture of innovation, promote maximum efficiency, foster sustainability and improving the lives of our students and employees through empowered learning and living experiences." Technology plays a key role in powering the 200-hectare campus, which includes a living lab of digital experiments - from running an autonomous electric bus to testing drones for Singapore's airspace. This forms part of the global university's 2025 vision in equipping its Smart Campus with cloud-first technology and agile infrastructure. As the university adapted to respond, recover and reimagine its future during the pandemic, NTU Singapore partnered with Microsoft to create and sustain an environment that fosters flexibility and innovation on and off-campus. "Fostering a culture of continuous learning in the education sector for our future is key as we keep pace with global changes that shape our education sector in Singapore. Universities like NTU Singapore are stepping in the right direction as they accelerate their digital learning ambitions, embrace change, transform our education system and ensure the readiness of our future workforce," said Lum Seow Khun, Director, Public Sector Group, Microsoft Singapore. Embracing trusted technology for quality learning and teaching experiences Before the onset of the pandemic, the institution marked its first step in cloud enablement, having embraced online collaboration and communications by adopting Microsoft 365. This foresight enabled NTU Singapore to swiftly adapt to changes brought on by the pandemic, and allowed the university to pursue uninterrupted learning and teaching experiences through virtual meetings and online lessons on Teams during the nation-wide lockdown in April 2020. The institution also recognised the importance of seamless collaboration between the faculty and students as they worked from the safety of their homes. Paving the path toward a future of education where agility is the norm, NTU Singapore's deployment of Microsoft 365 strengthens the University's future-readiness while creating student-centric learning environments. "We previously deployed Microsoft 365 to enable productivity on an intelligent and secure cloud. As it turned out, Microsoft 365 became indispensable during the COVID-19 circuit breaker season and now serves as the foundation for hybrid learning and teaching experiences that benefit both our faculty and our students." Alvin Ong, Chief Information Officer at NTU Singapore Connecting the NTU community – anytime and anywhere Microsoft Teams Phone, Microsoft's cloud-based phone system add-on for Microsoft 365, which links local landlines to Teams accounts, was another factor that enabled NTU Singapore to adapt quickly to remote teaching and learning experiences. Campus staff had the flexibility to take calls on their Teams-integrated mobile phones with the help of Teams Calling, a modern voice platform built on Microsoft Cloud, allowing them to make and receive phone calls from anywhere – including their desk and video phone, mobile phone, computer, or modern Teams displays. By eliminating the need for existing physical phone infrastructure, NTU Singapore enjoyed cost savings in equipment, maintenance, and international call costs from cross-border research center projects and the provision of online exams and classes for stranded students overseas. Aligned with NTU Singapore's 2025 vision to harness the power of digital technology to enhance learning, teaching and research, IT managers also leveraged Microsoft Teams and other integrated tools within the platform to create an asset tracking system for IT asset reviews and pre-emptive checks to be conducted more efficiently. The university is now able to allocate resources toward higher-value tasks and innovation, accelerating the institution's broader mission to be future-ready, agile and resilient. Facilitating change by empowering users With varying departments and different ways of working, NTU Singapore needed a flexible solution that could meet diverse needs from campus staff to local and foreign students. To address this, the institution opted for Microsoft 365 and Microsoft Teams Phone as it catered to two extreme types of users. These include tech-savvy professors who can program software and non-technical administrators who need simple tools, such as email and instant messaging. NTU Singapore also employed flight path planning, a friction-reducing strategy to help users embrace technology that could enhance their campus experiences. Transforming and shaping the future of education in Singapore Beyond Microsoft Teams Phone and Microsoft 365, the university plans to roll out its new cloud-based student management system built on Microsoft Azure, amongst other ongoing initiatives to leverage technologies like chatbots and AI. "With a partner like Microsoft, we are confident of achieving our ambitious agenda in our NTU Singapore 2025 vision," said Alvin Ong. With a successful user-empowered change management program and cloud enablement roadmap in place, the digitally connected university is well-equipped to realise its 2025 vision, leading the way in fueling innovation while shaping the future of education. About Nanyang Technological University, Singapore A research-intensive public university, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore (NTU Singapore) has 33,000 undergraduate and postgraduate students in the Engineering, Business, Science, Humanities, Arts, & Social Sciences, and Graduate colleges. It also has a medical school, the Lee Kong Chian School of Medicine, established jointly with Imperial College London. NTU is also home to world-class autonomous institutes – the National Institute of Education, S Rajaratnam School of International Studies, Earth Observatory of Singapore, and Singapore Centre for Environmental Life Sciences Engineering – and various leading research centres such as the Nanyang Environment & Water Research Institute (NEWRI) and Energy Research Institute @ NTU (ERI@N). Ranked amongst the world's top universities by QS, NTU has also been named the world's top young university for the past seven years. The University's main campus is frequently listed among the Top 15 most beautiful university campuses in the world and has 57 Green Mark-certified (equivalent to LEED-certified) buildings, of which 95% are certified Green Mark Platinum. Apart from its main campus, NTU also has a campus in Novena, Singapore's healthcare district. Under the NTU Smart Campus vision, the University harnesses the power of digital technology and tech-enabled solutions to support better learning and living experiences, the discovery of new knowledge, and the sustainability of resources.

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The LEGO Group appoints Fiona Dawson to its Board of Directors

LEGO Education | August 25, 2020

The LEGO Group today announced the appointment of Fiona Dawson, the Global President of Mars Food, Multisales and Global Customers, to its Board of Directors with immediate effect. Fiona Dawson has worked for family-owned Mars, Incorporated for over thirty years. In her current role she sits on the Mars, Incorporated Leadership team and is responsible for Mars Foods’ portfolio of household brands, the various Multi-Segment markets in Mars, Incorporated, and the Global Customers. Mars, Incorporated has global annual revenues of more than US$35 billion. During her career, Fiona has held a wide range of leadership and marketing roles including President of Global Retail and Mars Chocolate UK, and European Marketing Vice President.

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ONLINE EDUCATION

Panopto and The Online Learning Consortium Announce Strategic Partnership to Expand Video-Based Learning

Panopto | May 17, 2021

The Online Learning Consortium (OLC), a philanthropic local area of schooling pioneers and trailblazers committed to progressing advanced instructing and learning, and Panopto, the main video the executives framework supplier for advanced education and enormous ventures, reported today a multi-year vital association uniting Panopto's industry mastery in secure video creation and the board, and OLC's expert turn of events, instructing and learning assets to extend the utilization of video-based learning inside the association. With the fast development in online distance learning over the previous year, video the executives frameworks have become fundamental innovation for advanced education. A large number of staff and understudies are utilizing these new video apparatuses to advance and develop their teaching methods. As pioneers in on the web, mixed, and advanced training, OLC consistently looks for new freedoms to execute and demonstrate imaginative employments of innovation that feature the proof based practices broadly utilized by staff, originators and understudies in their instructive work. "Scaling viable techniques for the plan and conveyance of value on the web and mixed learning is brought into the world of remixing and reconsidering both our practices and our joint efforts, expanding after existing systems inside a quickly evolving scene," said Angela Gunder, Chief Academic Officer of the OLC. "By cooperating with industry pioneers and giving criticism on the use of their items in the work we do, we can give setting and viewpoint on the different use cases across the field, assisting with illuminating the creation regarding item guides that middle the requirements of instructors and understudies the same." As a shared local area of instructors, trend-setters, and supporting technologists, the OLC fills in as an ideal space for different points of view and basic talk around how to best assistance understudies arrive at their fullest potential and help establishments discover efficiencies in work processes. "We are lowered that the OLC is joining forces with Panopto," said Dave Neway, Vice President of Marketing at Panopto. "OLC is a generally regarded and fundamental supporter of the progression of advanced education – which makes Panopto an ideal fit for OLC's expert improvement encounters. We anticipate engaging their individuals with the best video encounters." About Online Learning Consortium The Online Learning Consortium (OLC) is a communitarian local area of schooling pioneers and trend-setters, devoted to propelling quality advanced instructing and learning encounters intended to reach and connect with the cutting edge student – anybody, anyplace, whenever. OLC motivates development and quality through a broad arrangement of assets, including, best-practice distributions, quality benchmarking, driving edge guidance, local area driven meetings, professional based and observational examination and master direction. The developing OLC people group incorporates employees, heads, coaches, informative planners, and other learning experts, just as instructive establishments, proficient social orders and corporate ventures. About Panopto Panopto helps organizations and colleges make secure, accessible video libraries of their institutional information. Since 2007, the organization has been a pioneer in video catch programming, video the executives, and inside-video-search innovation. Today, Panopto's video the board framework is the biggest store of master learning recordings on the planet. Settled in Seattle, with workplaces in Pittsburgh, London, Hong Kong, Singapore, and Sydney, Panopto has gotten industry acknowledgment for its advancement, quick development, and friends culture.

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