ISTELive 2022 has come and gone. It was phenomenal to be back in person. NOLA rolled out the red carpet as we made our way throughout the convention center and the always fantastic dining venues. I noticed a different vibe this year in that we all felt an urgency to catch up and network, as well as had the need to gather as much information about technology in education as possible. District leaders, I believe, were vetting applications, hardware, and teaching practices with a different lens than before the past 2 years when we were all remote.
Exploring hybrid learning solutions on the show floor
This year, as in the past few years prior to the pandemic, Cisco had a booth on the show floor where we showcased our Hybrid Teaching and Learning solutions, including the Cisco Webex Collaboration Suite and the Meraki portfolio.
The Cisco Webex Suite has seen tremendous change and is no longer an application for just the corporate world thanks to key enhancements like closed captions in 100+ languages, transcription of recordings, and real-time audio translation. Webex is quick to implement and adopt thanks to ease of scheduling with open APIs, LMS integration that comes with the application at no additional charge, and the artificial intelligence capabilities to start and manage meetings.
Meraki wireless, cameras, and sensors rounded out the booth experience. Needed now more than ever, Meraki’s single dashboard monitors student and faculty wireless access, as well as the physical safety of a building with cameras and sensors – plus it’s easy to deploy and manage. Ease of use is key as our customers continually tell us that providing best-in-class network operations with smaller IT teams is imperative.
Experiencing Hybrid Logistics first-hand
In the Cisco-hosted breakout room, we joined forces with the Learning Counsel to provide a simulated activity that allowed participants to experience the Personalized Hybrid Logistic Learning Model first-hand. We are very excited to partner with the Learning Counsel to explore new models of learning that allow educators to think differently about space and time. The activity consisted of a giant floor mat depicting a school building. Each participant was given a role to play (i.e. teacher, remote student, counselor, administrator) and moved through a day in school, allowing participants to work together to understand the concepts and benefits of the Personalized Hybrid Logistics Learning Model.
The network is critical to advancing learning environments
As we think about the use of technology in education, we must also think about the use of the network. It’s the network that will allow logistics to provide educators with the data needed to personalize the learning environment. Just as logistics software in the shipping industry moves goods through ports and roadways, I am intrigued by the work of The Learning Counsel as they research and develop this model to support educators enabling a personalized learning environment for students.
The models of learning that a school will deploy rely on their ability to think differently about three topics that are currently top of mind for educators due to the demand for hybrid learning and the shortage of qualified teachers:
- Age-grade rosters
- The calendar/semester, including seat time
- The space and motion needed for various types of learning.
As we look at the network as the 4th Utility, security and efficiency of the network must be at the center of any district’s strategic plan. Applications accessed from within the district network or from a private or public cloud enable teachers to design learning more effectively than ever before. As Cisco partners with The Learning Counsel, it will be imperative that the data from the network applications be harnessed not to add an additional load on faculty but to enhance learning environments.
In case you missed our team at ISTE Live 2022, access key K-12 education resources and the content we shared throughout the week on-demand.