Two St. Louis area Educators are Making IT Happen

For nearly a decade, instructional technology professional development at Cooperating School Districts has been provided by the Virtual Learning Center. Last year, the Virtual Learning Center of CSD became an ISTE Affiliate. The CSDVLC ISTE Affiliate is proud to have nominated two fellow Missouri educators for the Making IT Happen program. Making IT Happen is an internationally recognized awards program for educators and leaders in the field of educational technology integration in K–12 schools from ISTE. The program identifies and rewards educational technology leaders around the world for their commitment and innovation.

Referred to as the eight components of the Formula of Success, these following criteria are in place to assist state, regional, and national, and international educational organizations in selecting awardees.

Recipients of the awards are educators who:

  1. Apply available technology now
  2. Move forward and don’t look back
  3. See students as real people
  4. Teach through relationships, inspiring, encouraging, nurturing
  5. Recognize that further change is necessary, but understand that it is a process
  6. Realize that teacher empowerment is the key element to technology integration
  7. Expect success
  8. Motivate through awareness and access to information

In St. Louis, Diana Dell and Ruth Litman-Block were nominated by the CSDVLC ISTE Affiliate and met the criteria listed above. Congratulations ladies for all your accomplishments! Ruth attended our last Midwest Education Technology Conference Advisory Committee meeting and was presented with her new pink jacket and certificate by Stephanie Madlinger. Diana was unable to make it but will collect her’s soon and we’ll definitely post a photo of her in her new jacket!

Both educators have a long history of instructional technology integration in St. Louis area schools; briefly, in 1998, Ruth created the videoconferencing program New Links to New Learning from a $3 million grant from AT&T. In June 2010, Ruth retired as the Director of the Virtual Learning Center at Cooperating School Districts. During her time in the VLC, she became a certified SMART Master teacher and a PD4ETS instructional specialist for the eMINTS program. Ruth also became the recipient of a Laureate Award for New Links  from The Computerworld Honors Program. She now works as a consultant. As for Diana, she recently retired from Valley Park School District where she served as the district Instructional Technology Specialist for 3 years. Since then, she along with a partner, developed and created SqoolTechs, LLC. For the past 4 years, the SqoolTechs have worked together to benefit the education of students and improve the quality of online instruction at the K-12 level. Diana is one of Missouri’s Google Certified Teachers. Additionally, Diana continues to support educators around the world through her self-created website Gamequarium, winning numerous awards for being the best educational online resource.

This only scratches the surface of the many accomplishments and talents Ruth and Diana have between them. The CSDVLC ISTE Affiliate has known for years Ruth and Diana were Making IT Happen, and we are pleased ISTE felt the same way.

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