News Releases

March 02, 2016

Vermont Joins National #GoOpen Initiative

Moving Schools to Embrace Open Education Resources

Peter Drescher, Education Technology Coordinator for the Vermont Agency of Education announced the launch of a new statewide #GoOpen initiative, joining the inaugural group of states across the country committing to support school districts and educators transitioning to the use of high-quality, openly-licensed educational resources in their schools. Vermont will be recognized for its leadership in this arena by the U.S. Department of Education at the #GoOpen Exchange, a gathering of state and district leaders, innovative education technology platform providers, and non-profit organizations working together to share knowledge and experiences to help educators transition to using openly licensed educational resources.

"It's time we encourage schools in Vermont to begin using and creating Open Education Resources," say Heather Bouchey, Deputy Director of the Vermont Agency of Education. "This is an opportunity for teachers to access free digital education resources that can be easily incorporated into classroom learning or re-envisioned to support personalized learning here in Vermont. The appropriate use of Open Education Resources is also a lesson in and of itself, demonstrating to students responsible sharing of digital resources."

Vermont was recognized for its commitment to a statewide technology strategy that includes the use of openly-licensed resources as a central component, developing and maintaining a statewide repository solution for openly licensed resources, and participating in a community of practice with other #GoOpen states and districts to share learning and professional development resources. So far, Drescher has been taking on a campaign of making schools more aware of Open Education Resources and how they can transform the classroom in the Digital Age. Learn more about Vermont's #GoOpen commitment at http://education.vermont.gov/educational-technology#oer.

"States are powerful collaborators in supporting and scaling innovation. They can connect forward thinking educators, share effective ideas and approaches widely, amplify successes, and can support districts in leveraging limited resources," says Joseph South, Director of the Office of Educational Technology at the U.S. Department of Education. "With the launch of statewide #GoOpen initiatives, states are helping districts thoughtfully transition to a new model of learning by facilitating the creation of an open ecosystem of digital resources that can increase equity and empower teachers."

Since the launch of #GoOpen, school districts from more than 16 states have worked with #GoOpen Ambassador districts and innovators from education technology companies and nonprofit organizations who have committed to create new tools and provide professional learning opportunities to help districts in their transition to using high-quality, openly-licensed educational resources in their schools.

Openly-licensed educational resources have enormous potential to increase equitable access to high-quality education opportunities in the United States. "Switching to openly licensed educational materials has enabled school districts to repurpose funding typically spent on static textbooks for other pressing needs, such as investing in the transition to digital learning," says Andrew Marcinek, Open Education Advisor at the Department, "We are excited that Vermont is committed to supporting its districts in using openly licensed educational resources."

For more details on #GoOpen commitments made by states, school districts, and technology companies, visit http://tech.ed.gov/open-education/.

Media Contact: Peter Drescher, 802-479-1169

Source: Agency of Education
Last Updated at: March 02, 2016 13:53:27