News Column

CoSN Expands Premiere K-12 Tech Leader Certification Program

May 16, 2014



WASHINGTON, May 16 -- The Consortium for School Networking issued the following news release:

CoSN (Consortium for School Networking (http://www.cosn.org/)) today announced that their CETL exam preparation and professional development materials are now available at the association's online collaborative learning site. Titled "CoSN's CETL Exam Preparation: Become a Highly Capable School System Technology Leader," the educational program prepares interested CETL candidates by providing an in-depth exploration of each of the 10 essential skill areas identified in CoSN's Framework of Essential Skills of the K-12 CTO (http://www.cosn.org/framework). The skill areas include: Leadership & Vision, Strategic Planning; Ethics & Policies; Instructional Focus & Professional Development Team Building & Staffing; Stakeholder Focus; Information Technology Management; Communication Systems Management; Business Management; and Data Management.

Accompanying the launch of the new online collaborative suite is CoSN's recently designed CETL Ambassadors (http://www.cosn.org/cetlambassador) program, featuring CETL certified district technology leaders who can attest to and share with peers nationwide how such designation advances the role of tech leadership in our schools.

"Preparation for the rigorous CETL exam is critical, so we wanted to give practicing and aspiring tech leaders better access to the necessary learning resources," said Keith Krueger, CEO of CoSN. "The new online platform will allow CETL students to examine key issues, work with peers, and better gauge and strengthen their knowledge of the skills needed to earn CETL distinction. With this credential, tech leaders today - especially our new ambassadors - are demonstrating to their staff, superintendent, and other stakeholders that they have mastered the knowledge and skills to build innovative and inspiring learning environments."

Each phase of the 11-module online course includes "To Do" exercises, "Reflection Questions" to help participants measure their understanding of the specific skill area, and an "Extending Your Study" section with suggestions for additional information on the module's topic. In addition, study groups of potential test takers, organized through CoSN state chapters, help candidates stay on a schedule and provide colleague expertise and other support to prepare for the exam. A student must meet the eligibility requirements to successfully apply for the CETL examination.

"The CETL study group is an ongoing professional learning experience, not a one shot deal. It is an example of a quality professional learning community where you learn from your colleagues and provide each other support along the way," said Alice Owen, Ph.D., CETL, Executive Director, Texas K-12 CTO Council. "The 'essential skills,' which the CETL exam measures, are competencies that all chief technology officers should possess. Having achieved your CETL certification gives you pride in being part of such a nationally recognized group."

"When I first became a CTO, I searched for professional certification to authenticate that I had mastery of key concepts and competencies that were integral to my position," said Patricia Haughney, CETL, Director of Information Services / CIO, Barrington CUSD 220 (IL). "My husband had earned that type of designation in the health care field and proudly displayed those initials after his signature. The CoSN framework, CETL study materials, and CETL exam provide ed tech professionals with a national recognition of their skills, hard work, and value to the organization. Those initials will always be part of my signature as well."

To learn more about the online collaborative suite and the ambassadors program, as well as full details regarding the CETL certification exam, please visit: www.cosn.org/certification.

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