Department Seeks Broad Input for New National Education Technology Plan

May 27, 2003

The department is actively seeking advice from a variety of constituencies in education, especially students, parents, K-12 educators, colleges and university leaders, and business and industry. Individuals and organizations are being asked to identify and communicate to the Department of Education their top issues, priorities, concerns, and barriers that need to be addressed for technology to improve teaching and learning in the 21st century. Interested parties can give their input by visiting the National Education Technology Plan’s Web site at, and clicking on the “Participate in the Plan” link.

U.S. Secretary of Education Rod Paige said the long-range plan has a sharp focus on students. “The plan will center on how to help students as they grow up being exposed to various technologies,” he said. “As technology continues to be an important part of children’s lives outside of school, it is shaping their expectations of what school will be like. The National Education Technology Plan intends to explore this trend and the implications for creating digital age educational opportunities to match the expectations of digital age students.”

The department’s plan will serve as a valuable tool for education leaders to set a strategic direction to meet the demands of life and work in a future that will continue to change as a result of technology.

“This effort will set new priorities and actions that all stakeholders can rally behind to ensure technology is being used effectively to prepare students for their future, not our past,” Paige added. “Technology provides new ways of explaining and enhancing educational opportunities for students. When used effectively, technology can help prepare our nation’s children succeed in the 21st century.”

“But first we want input from a variety of sources,” said John Bailey, director of educational technology at the department. “More opportunities to provide comments and recommendations will occur once the priorities have been identified. Ultimately, this feedback will ensure that policymakers at all levels of government can understand how to use technology effectively and how states can employ technology to help meet the goals of No Child Left Behind.”

The No Child Left Behind Act charges the secretary of education with developing the nation’s third National Education Technology Plan. The plan will establish a national strategy supporting the effective use of technology to improve student academic achievement and prepare them for the 21st century. It provides an opportunity to reflect on the progress our nation has made as a result of a decade of increased federal, state, local and private investments in connecting classrooms to the Internet, providing students with computers, and equipping teachers with the skills they need to use technology as an instructional tool.

No Child Left Behind is the landmark education reform law designed to change the culture of America’s schools by closing the achievement gap, offering more flexibility, giving parents more options and teaching students based on proven education practices. For more information on No Child Left Behind, visit


Contact: David Thomas, (202) 401-1576