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New D. 202 Digital Learning director will help blend technology, teaching

Eagle Pointe Elementary School Principal Laura Weed will lead a new initiative to blend technology and teaching as District 202’s first Director of Digital Learning and Innovation.

The District 202 Board of Education approved appointing Weed to the new position at its April 29, 2019 regular meeting.

Weed’s new role is part of the district’s “Digital Learning Initiative,” which started three years ago. Last year District 202 created a special team of teachers acting as “Technology Trailblazers” to research the most effective and efficient ways to use technology to improve teaching and learning in the classroom.

“The Digital Learning initiative will help create learning environments that meets students’ diverse learning styles through a blended model of traditional, high-functioning classrooms with personalized technology,” said District 202 Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum and Instruction Dr. Glenn Wood. ​

Over the last several years District 202 has significantly increased its hardware and software. However, it’s also become clear that the district also needs to build infrastructure and add staff to insure students, staff, and the community are going to utilize technology in the most effective manner, Wood said. 

“Simply buying laptops for students is neither cost effective nor productive if teachers don’t understand how to use the technology in ways that help students learn better,” he said.

In her new role, Weed will lead the district’s digital curriculum design, utilize instructional technologies, and promote learner-centered environments. 

She will work with students, educators and the community to build and sustain environments that focus on learner-centered experiences and innovations.

As well, Weed, who helped pilot the Trailblazer program as a building principal will also manage and select software; oversee the Trailblazer program; and build a system of professional development for teachers, administrators, interventionists, reading specialists, and media specialists.

More than 50 highly qualified candidates applied for the new position. However, Weed was the best choice “based on her leadership as principal leading the Trailblazer program at Eagle Pointe and her vision of what digital learning can become in District 202,” Wood said.

Weed, who started her education career in District 202 in 2007 said she is very excited for this new challenge.

“As a building principal, I have been able to pilot the district’s Trial Blazer program, implement digital platforms, and work closely with teachers to expand student engagement,” said Weed, who has led Eagle Pointe Elementary School since 2016. 

“As a Director of Digital Learning and Innovation, I will work to build a shared vision of promoting excellence and positive change within the instructional environments to support innovative teaching and student learning.”