CHALLENGE: UNLEASHING THE POWER OF DATA!
Education data is used in so many ways—like generating reports on enrollment or finding ways to reduce classroom overcrowding. We think it can be so much more powerful. Apps4VA is a program that engages the public in developing fresh and innovative ideas on how to use education data and to develop the tools to do just that!
>200 Participants - 6 events - 80 Apps - 2 Education Related Startups!
Apps4VA sponsored a number of public events that involved people across industries, from education to programming to entrepreneurs and beyond. Over the course of the program, more than 200 participants in 6 events (Startup Weekend EDU, 4 simultaneous hackathons, and an open competition) developed more than 80 new cutting-edge, education-focused apps and launched two new education-related startups. In June, Apps4VA will sponsor the VLDS Insights Conference, designed to link communities of data providers with data consumers.
Pilot Studies and 60 Student Developers!
University researchers are piloting new ways to use the VLDS data. And, this spring, sixty James Madison University Database Design and Applications students participated in a semester-long project built on the Apps4VA program. The Apps4VA team attended the final student presentations in April and awarded prizes to the top three student-developed apps.
High School Engagement
High School Student-Created Apps and a Code-A-Thon!
Students across Virginia were invited to enter an idea for a theoretical app or to develop an actual working prototype. Winners were awarded cash prizes and sponsoring schools also received cash awards in honor of their winning students. The program also encouraged teacher-student mentorships. One teacher helped his student to learn how to address coding challenges, others met outside the normal class time to guide their students in the creative process and in learning to collaborate. Future plans include linking the creators of student apps projects with professional developers to build or further refine the apps begun in the High School Competition. And finally, inspired by the program, a Virginia school division held the first ever student CodeAThon, where Apps4VA sponsored a session on game design.
MAKING A DIFFERENCE
The Apps4VA Idea Bank provided another opportrunity for community involvement. Suggestions for apps that could be developed in key K-12 data areas were contributed from a variety of community members. What ideas do you have to help further better data-driven decisions. What other agencies' data could make these tools even more powerful?
NEWS AND EVENTS
Press Release: CIT Supports Startup Weekend Events in Virginia
Press Release. CIT and VDOE Announce Winners of Apps4VA!
Press Release: CIT Announces Predictive Outcomes Wins Best in Virginia During Statewide HAC4EDU