the Learning Counsel Gathering 2018

Gathering 2019

November 15-17, 2019
Omni Dallas Hotel at Park West
1590 Lyndon B Johnson Fwy,
Farmers Branch, TX 75234

A Retreat-Style Event for Digitally Transitioning
School & District Leaders

The Road Less Traveled:
Becoming Expo Learning

"I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I,
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference"

Robert Frost


"I think (all the) speakers have been well vetted -- things that we can really use to bring education forward. Leilani’s talk was really motivational for me. With the right framework and the right people around you and the right information, some of which is in the packets of information that were handed out, we can really make a difference and move forward into where we need to go as a Country, as an educational system, and as a world of learners. I’m really impressed."

– Greg Landry, Principal, Massachusetts

School Survival on the Road Less Traveled

It’s easy to essentially stay the same yet tack on technology. It’s harder to transform a whole institution. Why would anyone take the more difficult “road less traveled?” School and district leaders already sense the need to survive the onslaught of digital-age options and high-percentage attrition to other choices, many urgently. What does it mean to move beyond just classroom tech focus to alter the whole way schools are organized? What are the really epic societal changes underway fueling a new education trend to become experiential-learning focused around personalized digital learning? How would regular people even define experiential or personalization – and why does this matter?

1st ½ Day: School Problems Today Transitioning to Digital
2nd Full Day: Steps on the Road – Learn & Discuss
3rd ½ Day: Schools & Districts Who Walked the Walk

Learn. Collaborate. Strategize.

The “best of the best” educators come to the Gathering every year to learn from each other and see the next stages of possibility from Learning Counsel research.

A finely curated set of speakers, workshops, and learning groups takes up less than two days of efficient and impactful professional development.

2019 Theme: Becoming Expo Learning

The new designed-for-digital education enterprise would reverse engineer the analog (people and place) aspects into a digital-first entity. It would flip to digital. It would flip to workflow instead of industrial-age delivery models. Such a redesign would fit current expectations because of what people experience in other sectors, where there is an App for everything. It would emphasize personalizing learning paths for real. It would leverage the teachers for their humanity and not overburden them with all aspects of lesson planning, analytics, data entry and a mile-high tech and Apps stack.

Schools would transform to becoming centers of high experience, with a heavy emphasis on automated teaching and learning to free up more intensely meaningful hands-on and collaborative activities. Humans would be celebrated for their humanity, accompanied by learning tech and analytics so well-orchestrated as to fade into the background.

Becoming Expo Learning is: shifts in school space use, in the workflow of learning, in the schedules of teachers and students, in the use of all kinds of software flexibly while creating a branded digital universe of knowledge, in an infusion of energy that can’t be copied in all-online schools.

It’s the next evolution.

Join us to learn from the schools and districts doing this sort of transitioning.

See you there!

Experience the 2018 Gathering highlights >>>

Agenda Overview

The event is organized to give a sweeping overview of the state of education, provide a briefing from Learning Counsel research, and challenge attendees intellectually with a ton of special speakers and workshops.

Fri. Nov. 15th 4PM - 6PM Evening Reception – 2019 Survey Briefing & Special Speakers
School Problems Today Transitioning to Digital
Sat. Nov. 16th Full Day 8am through Dinner ending at 7pm – Keynotes, Breakouts, Learning Groups, Workshops
Steps on the Road – Learn & Discuss
Sun. Nov. 17th Half Day 8am through 1pm – Keynotes, Group Discussion, National Survey Awards
Schools & Districts Who Walked the Walk

Gathering 2019

Omni Dallas Hotel at Park West
Dallas, Texas
November 15—November 17

American Schools & Districts spend more than $10.5 B on Digital Curriculum Resources, another $11.5 B on Hardware and another $5.1 B on major software systems.

36% of teachers spend more than 10 hours per week building their own digital learning content.

60% of teachers are overwhelmed in lesson planning that uses any tech.

22% of lesson planners do not understand available App options and the impact of the different types of digital resources on teacher workload.

The average K12 District has 1,000’s of Apps in use that are unknown to their administrators

Educator Attendance Fee ($175-$249 before Nov. 8,
$215-$295 after): If you are a company, please contact Annette Erwin at for pricing.

For What & Why

One-of-a-Kind Market Research Briefing
Learning Counsel runs the largest and most in-depth market research study in the nation on K12 digital transition. The Gathering is where we release the just-closed Survey’s top-line data and choose the top 10 School & District Winners and Honorable Mentions to showcase. Administrators from across America fly in to meet and try to emulate the champions we showcase.

What’s Next, Curated for Leaders
The Gathering is the only conference focused on helping K12 leaders with understanding where their school or district stands in the national landscape of tech and learning transformation. Keynoters and breakout session speakers are highly curated to provide attendees with a very concentrated and of-the-moment topics that research shows need your attention now.

Best-of-the-Best Educators Speak
The Learning Counsel is the only national organization pulling the best-of-the-best to attend and speak because we tour through 30 or more cities with our regional events. We start arm-twisting in June of each year, and sometimes threaten to cry if those schools don’t promise to fly in.

Learning Groups
The Gathering convenes the Learning Groups who have joined in to be part of phone call discussions, ongoing work, and the live-chat hours at the Gathering on these topics run by Administrators chosen from districts:

• Characteristics – UI
How do we define the characteristics of the user interface in educational software, and through definition and understanding create a more beneficial outcome for our learners?
Education Chairman: Karla Burkholder, Director of Instructional Technology, Schertz-Cibolo-Universal City ISD
Key Contributor: L. Beatriz Arnillas, MFA, SPHR, Senior Education Advisor, itslearning

• Instructional Digital Design/Academic Models – UX
What is a good User Experience for teachers, students, parents, administrators?

• Learning Gaming
How do we know any learning is going on inside these games or game-like systems?
Education Chairman: Dr. Jasna Aliefendic, Technology Applications Coordinator, Garland Independent School District
Key Contributor: Ben Batstone, Game Designer, THQ Nordic, former Disney

• Analytics, Infrastructure and Security
How do you build a school’s secure “digital house” that is continuously managed for institution and student data?
Education Chairman: Kristy Sailors, Director Education Technology, IT, Eanes ISD, Austin
Industry Chairman: Canon U.S.A., Inc.

• ReDesign – Operations & Environment
How do you make a learning environment that is both physically and digitally relevant--a complete operation and not just point solutions for teachers?
Education Chairman: To Be Determined
Industry Chairman: Canon U.S.A., Inc

All of these reasons why, plus the amazing 3-day format into a Friday Reception, packed day on Saturday and intellectually-challenging final half-day on Sunday are ideal for leaders and teachers alike.

Your fee helps defray some costs of catering which includes:
• Fri. Nov. 15 Reception with National Market Briefing on the Learning Counsel’s annual Digital Transition Survey
• Sat., Nov. 16 Breakfast, Lunch, Refreshments, and Dinner
• Sun., Nov. 17 Breakfast, Lunch

Free Special Report used in the Workshops, plus many free Whitepapers and Journals.

Venue and audio-visual costs.

The Gathering is presented in a retreat-style so there isn’t a large booth floor to wander through. Instead, the majority of the cost is are borne by sponsors who take up a handful of “Show & Discuss” ten or 15-minute moments throughout the day and in the breakouts, before or after educators speaking on a variety of topics. Sponsors are also curated since the Gathering has a limited number of opportunities for companies to participate.

Encourage all school and district leaders to attend and “get briefed” on market dynamics in K12, on the latest curated topics, and hear the stories of the valiant transitions of other K12s. We look forward to seeing you there!