Digital Learning Annual Conference - DLAC 2021

June 14, 2021
Austin, TX & Online
Booth Number

We are delighted to support our clients presenting at the Digital Learning Annual Conference.



When Access Isn’t Equal: How the Pandemic Informed the Nation’s Equity Gaps

June 14, 3:00-4:15 p.m. Central, Online

COVID-19 transformed our discussions about equity and supporting our nation’s most vulnerable students. With the large-scale shift to online learning, systemic inequities have become a glaring challenge for an alarming number of students and families. This has emerged front-and-center as one of the challenges districts needed to overcome to ensure every student has an opportunity to succeed. Join us for a conversation with a few of the nation’s top educators to discuss their recommended strategies, resources and lessons learned on how to ensure all content reflects our students and that learning programs support educational equity. How are districts going to be evaluating content differently moving forward and how are they making decisions about content?


  • Kimberly Smith, Digital Promise (Center for Inclusive Innovation)
  • Sabrina Jenkins, Interim Director of Blended Learning at Guilford County Schools
  • James Butler, Senior Director Instructional Technology and Online Education at Tucson Unified School District
  • Lisa Williams, Chief Equity Officer at Fairfax County Public Schools
  • Diana Marshall, Director of Equity and Student Achievement at San Juan Unified School District



Practitioners of the Future: How Teachers Transformed Their Instruction to Support Virtual Learning

June 15, 3:00–4:15 p.m. Central, Online

As we move into the next phase of post-pandemic life and school, three educators from across the country explore what they believe will stick from this experience and share the changes they are going to make in their classrooms. We discuss the challenges they encountered, what they did to address these challenges within their schools and districts, and the opportunities this new education landscape creates. We also cover how will these changes will impact schools, students, teachers, and their families over the long-term, how to equip teachers with adequate resources going forward, and how technology will continue to evolve to help to facilitate student learning now and well into the future.


  • Betsy Corcoran, Co-founder and Columnist at EdSurge
  • Tim Buckingham, Mentor at Big Rapids Virtual School 
  • Matt Hiefield, Teacher at Beaverton School District



    The Student Perspective: What Do Students Want to See Change and What Do They Want to Stay the Same in a Post-pandemic World?

    June 15, 11:00 a.m. - 12:15 p.m. Central, Online

    This past year, we all seemed to talking ABOUT our students, but few were talking to the students themselves. In this session we explore how students feel about the shifts to digital learning last year, including what they liked, and what they didn’t like. We also talk about what they would like to see change and what they want to stick as we move forward this school year and beyond. They share what suggestions for educators and districts as they navigate how to best support student needs in the future.


    • Tom Vacanti, Online Learning Coordinator at City School District of Albany
    • City school District of Albany – Student
    • Big Rapids Public Schools Virtual School – Student
    • Guilford County – Student


    Strategies for Supporting Students In a Hybrid Instructional

    June 15, 11:25-11:45 a.m. Central, Online

    When the pandemic began, Big Rapids Public Schools was able to smoothly expand their virtual school program to provide hybrid instruction to all their middle and high school students. Based on their learnings from the transition, Principal Mitch Cumings will offer strategies for ensuring student engagement and academic growth. Educators will learn about how BRPS uses teachers in very specific roles to alleviate the workload on the classroom teacher.

    Presenter: Mitch Cumings, Principal at Big Rapids Public Schools



    Partners in Learning: How to Get the Most from Your Vendor Relationships

    June 15, 3:00-4:15 p.m. Central, Online

    Kanoe Namahoe, SmartBrief Education Editor explores the dynamic partnerships between school districts and their vendor relationships. How have these partnerships changed since the pandemic, how have district needs shifted and what are vendors doing to truly serve as partners rather than serve as transactional vendors. The SmartBrief Education Insights column features some of the leading voices from the K-12 industry and this discussion will break down the perception of the relationship between vendor and school districts and the integral role these relationships play as partners in the learning process.


    • Kanoe Namahoe, Director of Content at SmartBrief Education
    • Jean Sharp, CAO at Apex Learning
    • Ido Yerushalmi President & CEO at Intelitek
    • Adam Geller, Founder of Edthena 



    Digital Learning Beyond the Pandemic: Building on What We've Learned

    June 15, 3:00-4:15 p.m. Central, Online

    This year, educators have learned much about using technology in education and some have come up with innovative new ways of doing things that will persist beyond the pandemic. New Jersey educator, Lisa Rowbotham of Passaic Public Schools, offers a great example of this. She shares the district’s strategies for supporting the unique learning needs of each student, providing expansive professional development and support for teachers, and enlisting parents as partners in the learning process.

    Presenter: Lisa Rowbotham, Supervisor of English Language Arts & AVID District Director at Passaic Public Schools



    The Classroom of the Future: What Lessons Have We Learned From COVID-19, and What Will be the Long-term Impacts on our Educational System?

    June 16, 9:00-10:15 a.m. Central, In Person

    Three leading districts share lessons learned from COVID-19 this year, what has worked well, what hasn’t worked, and their plans for future change as they prepare for reopening in the new school year. The interactive discussion will cover funding, budgets, district plans, how they are addressing learning models, equity, and more – all with a heavy dose of optimism. They will discuss the challenges they faced and share how they plan to use this experience as a catalyst for change in the 2021-2022 school year and beyond.


    • Jean Sharp, CAO at Apex Learning
    • Kerrie Torres, Brea Olinda Unified School District, Assistant Superintendent
    • Tom Vacanti, City School District of Albany, Online Learning Coordinator



        Carrying Forward: Re-visioning Education’s Next Normal – Charting a New Course of Revolutionary Innovation Post-COVID

        June 16, 10:30-11:15 a.m. Central, In Person

        Join this interactive networking opportunity to discuss system change and learning experiences post-COVID. Several common themes will be explored: resetting teacher and digital partnerships; redefining flexible learning models, parent choice, and personalized learning pedagogy; restarting school with attention on operational logistics and stakeholder expectations; reflecting upon lessons learned and how they can inform what we envision and can create for students’ learning as we carry forward.


        • Jean Sharp, CAO, Apex Learning
        • Kim Loomis, Consultant at i3 Digital PD