Connected Educator Month officially ended late on October 31 with a rollicking, highly interactive afterparty that was a great mix of substance and fun. We were graced to have ISTE CEO Brian Lewis as our co-host (in costume!), and were surprised and very grateful when the US Department of Education's head of the Office of Educational Technology, Richard Culatta, who made this entire event possible, was able to dial in from the BETT conference in Brazil (tough connectivity!) and was with us for the entire party, even though it ended at 1 AM local time for him. Among many other things Richard shared with us is that what we're doing collectively to support connected education is something he's consistently been able to showcase as a model for other nations at top international conferences (like BETT). And that Secretary Duncan is already taking action on a number of things he heard in this past week's Twitter chat, setting the ultimate example of connected leadership (at the highest levels) as far as we're concerned.
Originally we were going to include all of the above and more in a newsletter to you on Friday, including numbers, archives and next steps, plus more connected educator profiles and other content, too. But after the huge month we all had, we decided everyone, including us, needed a real day of rest. And we still think it's time for rest today. But it's also time for some appreciations that we expressed during our closing sessions to be expressed more widely (a little past time, actually). So without further ado, we want to say thanks, from the baseline of our real and virtual hearts, to:
The Department of Education who provided the resources and leadership that made CEM as you saw it possible
All the organizations and individuals who helped with the planning of this year's event (we hope you were pleased by how much of what you suggested we did, and know that we're still in the process of implementing more)
All the participating organizations whose events and activities made the month unforgettable and whose efforts to spread the word allowed record numbers of educators to experience it
All the thought leaders who participated in the opening sessions, in the Connected/CEM Cafe, as theme curators, in the Pinterest team, and in many other events besides, who gave us inspiration and ideas that will last for years to come
All the organizations who showed support for connected education above and beyond the call by sponsoring the many contests and challenges that were run (some still running!), and
Above all you, the educators at all levels who participated in and partook of CEM, and did everything we all did and more.
Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.
The CEM Team
PS We'll be back early next week with some final numbers for the month, a few updates, and what's next for CEM. We hope everyone has a peaceful and restful weekend.