Monday, May 23, 2011

Help DoDEA Design 21st Century Schools!

The Department of Defense Education Activity (DoDEA) is seeking your insight and ideas on how future learning environments are designed, constructed and furnished.
In January of 2011, President Barack Obama released a report (Strengthening our Military Families) that identified education as one of his key areas.  Complementing this initiative, the Department of Defense has committed to an ambitious military construction program that will build or significantly renovate over 100 DoDEA schools. From now until 2016, this modernization initiative will replace an aging inventory of facilities with state-of-the-art schools to support dependent education for the next 45 years. 
School districts across the nation, including DoDEA, are facing major facility challenges due largely to the aging infrastructure and the related costs. Providing a safe, secure and educationally appropriate facility for all military children is a critical responsibility for DoDEA.
Parents and community members are invited to share ideas at: 
“We really need input from our students, parents and the community to help design educational facilities that optimize success for students in the 21st Century,” said Fitzgerald. “Our schools need to support the teaching and learning process in a way that helps our children grow and learn in the 21st Century."

Submissions can be in the form of videos, images, written narratives or audio files. All student work must be submitted by a teacher using the established Intranet site to ensure adult moderation. 

The site provides registration information, guiding questions, and the process for submitting ideas electronically. 

DoDEA has established a three phase plan entitled, Facilities for 21st Century Learning. Phase 1, which has already occurred, brought together experts from industry, educational leaders, and futurists.  Phase 2 focuses on receiving ideas and input from you, our customers.  Phase 3 will involve a thorough analysis and synthesis of all submitted ideas and input. 

“We are seeing dramatic changes in how students communicate, interact, and learn,” said DoDEA Acting Director Marilee Fitzgerald. “School facilities of the future must be flexible and adaptable, allowing us to adjust to deliver student-centric education for a 21st century, knowledge-based economy.”
DoDEA will take innovations in education, curriculum delivery, use of technology, and the growing expectations for sustainability and energy conservation into consideration as the process moves forward.  

The deadline for submission is June 16.  Don’t miss this opportunity to influence the future of education within DoDEA. Visit the site today at: 

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