Digital Promise is incredibly excited to welcome the Edcamp Foundation to our family of projects and programs.
As we grew our partnership over the last several years, it became clear that the mission and vision of both organizations are incredibly aligned. By fully merging our operations, we believe we can do even more to support the community of educators who organize and attend Edcamps across the United States and around the world. The strength of the Edcamp movement comes from a belief that teachers are the best experts in classroom practice, agency and choice are vital to create powerful professional learning experiences, and strong networks and communities of practice allow educators to grow and thrive.
The Edcamp Community project within Digital Promise will continue to provide the support to Edcamp organizers that the Edcamp Foundation has provided. We are also planning new ways to engage and support this vibrant community of teacher-leaders and are excited to share those soon.
Below is a letter from Edcamp Foundation Executive Director Hadley Ferguson that was shared with the Edcamp Community today:
Dear Edcamp Community, friends, and supporters,
In the midst of the challenges the world is facing, we have exciting news about the Edcamp Foundation. We officially merged with Digital Promise, and are excited for the synergies and opportunities this new chapter will bring for the Edcamp movement. Our organizations share very similar missions and are both committed to powerful learning experiences for educators where they can collaborate and learn from each other to create inclusive and meaningful learning experiences for their students.
Digital Promise believes in and will continue to support the programs of the Edcamp Foundation, maintaining access to tools and resources organizers need and a website listing of upcoming local and virtual Edcamps for participants to attend. The Edcamp Community team at Digital Promise will continue to facilitate the process of organizing an Edcamp including registration, promotion, and sending out free resource kits with supplies and branded materials. I assure you the process will remain familiar.
Our work with Digital Promise began a number of years ago and has grown through today. Since 2017 they have provided maker learning activity kits that were included in our free resource boxes. I’m sure some of you remember receiving them, and I am excited to share that the kits will be included in our boxes when we are once again able to have in-person Edcamps! Digital Promise also supported the development and research portion of our initiative to provide Transcend’s Designing for Learning cards for Edcamp attendees. And most recently, while the majority of Edcamps have been postponed or moved online, Digital Promise hosted the Powerful Learning at Home virtual Edcamp series to support teachers in the transition to learning at home, and plans to continue hosting virtual Edcamps next school year as well. We hope you can participate in one of them! Finally, we have developed an Edcamp organizer micro-credential to recognize educators for their work organizing an Edcamp.
Allison Modica, who has been the Director of Operations at the Edcamp Foundation with me for four years, is now the Project Director for the Edcamp Community at Digital Promise. Program Assistant, Danielle Khordi, has also joined the Digital Promise team to provide support and technical assistance to the community. Together, they will support the growth of the Edcamp movement as it enters its second decade. To continue to ensure the integrity of the model and advance the growth of the community, we are forming an Edcamp Advisory committee composed of former Edcamp Foundation Board members and Edcamp organizers.
I am stepping back at this juncture from leading this amazing community with a full and grateful heart. It has been an incredible journey, full of travel, presentations, and significant conversations with members of the Edcamp community. We hosted three Edcamps at the Department of Education, held nine Leadership Summits around the country, and presented at numerous conferences, sharing this simple and powerful idea of professional development with all types of educators. We extended the reach of Edcamp to early childhood educators through our partnership with PBS Kids Edcamps at PBS stations around the country. Our research on the impact of attending an Edcamp found that these events enhanced teacher engagement and levels of collaboration. Just last year, we sent out over 500 resource kits to Edcamp organizers, many of whom were new organizers.
What began as the slightly crazy idea of a small group of teachers has grown and extended its impact, changing the way professional development is delivered in schools and districts around the world. I am convinced that Digital Promise will continue this work in all of the best possible ways!
Thank each of you for all that you have given to make this happen! The future is bright for the Edcamp Community!
All my best,