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Education Secretary Arne Duncan Hails Learning Registry


U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan on Monday hailed a new open-government initiative aimed at helping teachers to harness the "full power" of the Internet, saying the program will enable "compelling, personalized" instruction.

A joint effort of the Department of Education and the Department of Defense, the online Learning Registry will help accelerate a metamorphosis in America's classrooms from sites of print-based instruction to digital learning environments, Duncan said.

The program will "enable teachers to offer personalized instruction that will both raise the bar and level the playing field for every single student," said Duncan, speaking at the annual convention of the State Educational Technology Directors Association (SETDA).

The Learning Registry provides a platform for content providers and aggregators to share materials with educators and parents alike, in an open-source environment.

Moreover, technical protocols allow for applications to help users to find quickly targeted materials to meet specific student needs, and administrators and others to harvest and analyze data being shared.

"Whether teachers are down the hall from each other or literally half-way across the globe, the Learning Registry can help them find and share what they are thinking, teaching or collectively creating," Duncan said.

U.S. Chief Technology Officer Aneesh Chopra, also speaking to convention attendees, said the Learning Registry will help capture the imagination of youngsters and engage entrepreneurs in new market opportunities.

The Learning Registry will allow teachers and parents to tap into "proven, successful innovation" that can engage students, said Chopra, associate director for technology within the White House Office of Science & Technology Policy.

Calling the Learning Registry the "flagship open-government initiative" at the Department of Education, Chopra said the effort represents the Obama administration's push toward "lightweight, bottom-up, standards-driven" government.

The Learning Registry beta release was developed by a team funded by the Department of Education and ADL: SRI International, Lockheed Martin, National Science Digital Library (NSDL), Navigation North, and Butte County Office of Education/CADRE in California.

by RTT Staff Writer

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