CRANE Coordinator to Become ‘Certified Innovator’

Jared Amalong, the CRANE  Information and Communications Technologies (ICT) Coordinator, working out of the Placer County Office of Education (PCOE), has been selected as a participant in the Google for Education Certified Innovator Program. The program begins with an Innovation Academy to be held at Google Headquarters in Mountain View, CA on February 24-26, 2016.

34 participants worldwide were selected for the Google for Education Certified Innovator program based on their professional experience, their passion for teaching and learning, their innovative use of technology in school settings, and their potential impact on other educators. Amalong will represent CRANE and PCOE in this prestigious program.

At the Innovation Academy, participants will discover how to unlock creativity, translate insights into solutions, experiment rapidly, and build an effective innovation culture in schools and organizations. Participants will come away with practical approaches, valuable tools and techniques, and the beginnings of an Innovation Project. This project will drive change in education, impact educators and students, and be documented for other educators to follow.

For his Innovation Project, Amalong will leverage his previous teaching experience in computer science to develop a high school curriculum for CRANE teachers.  President Obama recently announced $4 billion in federal funding to increase computer science course offerings nationwide, prompting a need for more rigorous and relevant curriculum. “Inventioneering,” as Amalong’s Innovator Project is titled, will incorporate content developed in partnership with Google and Intel that will be delivered in a project-based format, giving students much needed hands-on classroom experience.  

“This is such an incredible opportunity to work with one of the world’s leading technology companies and other education innovators around the country,” said Amalong. “Creative development and use of technology has the potential to fundamentally improve the way students learn and I am excited to support ICT teachers as they transform the educational experience for high school students in the Sacramento Area. ”

Amalong’s work with CRANE and PCOE to date has included partnering with Sacramento Area schools to provide professional development in ICT, consulting with teachers to align course offerings with postsecondary degrees and industry certifications, developing work-based learning opportunities for students to extend their classroom learning, and advocating for equity in computer science education at the State Capitol.  

“When we were awarded the Pathways Trust Grant, our overall objective was to transform students into the premier technological and entrepreneurial workforce for the next economy in the Sacramento region,” said Gayle Garbolino-Mojica, Placer County Superintendent of Schools. “With CRANE ICT Coordinator Jared Amalong being selected as one of 34 Google Certified Innovators, we will be able to deliver on that promise to students in the ICT pathway.”

After completion of the Innovation Academy, Amalong will be a Google for Education Certified Innovator.

For more information on the Google for Education Certified Innovator Program, please visit www.certifiedinnovators.com