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Spark: A space for social innovators to combine ideas with networks

 Registration is closed for this event

Spark Workshop on Education Technology:
Can Education Technology Close the Achievement Gap?

with Ryan Betts, Teacher, Darien Public School DistrictStanley Buchesky '02, Managing Partner, The EdTech FundDaniel Konecky, Director of Online Development, Relay Graduate School of Education; Alia McCants '13, Director of Operations, New York City, Relay Graduate School of Education; Terrence Robinson, Teacher, CASA Middle School, Bronx, NY; and Kevan Ottochian, Teacher, Warwick Valley Central School District.


Saturday, May 10, 2014
10:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.
Networking lunch to follow.
Please plan on arriving 10-15 minutes early.

Uris Hall, Room 301
3022 Broadway (behind Low Library)


Technology has become a critical part of how today’s school children are educated. From individual classrooms to broader district-wide systems, technology’s integration into established learning systems increasingly raises questions and poses challenges to the status quo. This Spark workshop is dedicated to brainstorming ways that technology can be leveraged to close the achievement/opportunity gap in low-income communities in the US by discussing key problems related to data tracking and reporting, school and school-system operations, classroom learning, and scaling successful solutions.

Potential topics for discussion:

  • Data: What are the current challenges of tracking and reporting on student-, classroom-, school-, and system-level data?
  • School/system operations: What are ways in which technology can provide solutions to the inefficiencies and pain points in running a school or a school system?
  • Classroom learning: What are the current challenges to classroom learning in low-income communities in the US and how can technology provide solutions? (e.g. Teacher quality, appropriate curriculum, access to resources, etc.) 
  • Innovation: What are the current challenges of incubating, identifying, funding, and scaling technological solutions that have proven to be effective in a very fragmented national education system? 


Spark provides Social Innovators with an opportunity to explore resources, connections and potential solutions to help their social ventures, by tapping the collective knowledge within Columbia University, and the larger entrepreneurial and social impact community in the New York area and beyond.

This workshop is open to all who are willing to bring their ideas, experience, and connections to help solve social and environmental challenges that these social innovators aim to address.



If you are unable to attend the above events but would like more information on Spark, please register for our mailing list.

For more information, or if you would like to suggest a future Spark workshop, please contact:
Diana Rambeau:

This event is supported by the Social Enterprise Program, the Eugene Lang Entrepreneurship Center and the Social Enterprise Club at Columbia Business School.

May 10th, 2014 from 10:00 AM to  2:00 PM
Uris Hall
3022 Broadway
Room 301
New York, NY 10027-6902
United States
Phone: 212-854-1649