Kentucky Writing Project's Technology Leadership Academy agenda.
Jean Wolph describes how the site took advantage of teachers' interest in learning digital tools--despite running out of state seed money-- to reach out to rural areas across the state, in what looks like a sustainable business model.
"We were anticipating good response from K-12 teachers for the open institutes, as we’d offered four two-day Tech academies in 2010 that had filled within a few days. This year, we doubled the number of sites and increased them to three days (based on the 2010 evaluations which indicated more time was desired by both participants and facilitators). We also increased our registration fee to $100. These fees for our open institutes become the operating funds for the KWP Network; they also allow us to purchase refreshments for the Academies and cover any operating costs that go beyond our grant from KDE. This year we had determined that our KDE funding for open institutes would only support about 13 teachers per site, given the cost of technology. Response was much heavier, however, so we offered additional slots at double the original registration fee, noting that we were out of scholarships that had covered the equipment. We then purchased technology for these teachers out of the registration fees, still reserving part of the fee to support the KWP budget. About 75 additional teachers are being served because of this tactic. Most sites were/are full (i.e., every lab station available was or will be used—six academies were held in June; two are being held in July).
One strategy that proved especially effective was that we had a statewide registration; as the more urban sites closed, registration picked up at the outlying sites."