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Classes may be out, but Harlingen CISD educators were hard at work on Tuesday, June 6, learning new skills that will take them into the next school year.

The district hosted its first ever Summer Technology Conference at Harlingen School of Health Professions bringing together over 300 teachers and staff from across the district.

“This conference was an idea that came from one of our design teams,” said Jessica Hruska, special projects and grants specialist. “We asked teachers what they would like to see in professional development. One of the things they said was a conference; more specifically, a technology conference. We came together as a team, and we had all of our different departments here and made the day happen.”

The full-day event featured 32 sessions covering a range topics to help educators integrate technology into their lessons. Technicians, staff, principals, instructional coaches, and teachers were among those presenting.

“I’ve learned about some new apps that have come out as well as new technology,” said Tita Adams, an instructional coach at Long Elementary. “It is important that the district provides these types of learning opportunities for our educators because the world of technology is constantly changing and it’s very difficult to keep up, so this is a way that allows us to come and learn during the summer when we don’t have students.”

Additional highlights of the conference included door prizes, a scavenger hunt, food trucks, and local vendors.

“The end goal of this conference is to continue the transformation of the district,” said James Pearcy, director of technology. “We want to make sure our students get a 21st-century education so that they are ready for the today’s world which is constantly changing. We need to change the way we are teaching, and technology integration is one of the tools that allows that transformation to take place.”

Click here for more photos of the event.

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