As South Carolina’s largest educational technology conference, the SC EdTech Conference’s primary goal is to bring educators, administrators, technology professionals, college faculty and staff, public and academic librarians, business and industry trainers, industry representatives, and policy makers together to think, discuss, listen, and learn the best strategies to plan for and use educational technology in our schools.
The concept for EdTech originated with the South Carolina Association of Data Processing Directors in 1984. In the early 1990s, the SC Department of Education’s Office of Technology became involved and created a small conference to share timely information about technology initiatives that affected the administrative staff in schools and districts. This conference grew to include instructional technology presentations and resources. During this time, a conference advisory committee was created to help the state department and its partners plan and deliver the conference each year. This twelve-member panel consisted of representatives of multiple South Carolina partners that included K-12, higher education, state government agencies, and telecommunications business partners.
The first EdTech as we know it today took place in 1997, the result of various conferences combining to make one mega state-wide conference for educators. In 2002, the management of EdTech was transferred from the SC Department of Education to the South Carolina Association for Educational Technology (SCAET), a 501©3 non-profit organization. Today the SCAET Board of Directors is composed of representatives from the Department of Administration-Division of Technology, South Carolina Association of School Librarians, University of South Carolina College of Information and Communication, South Carolina Educational Television, South Carolina Department of Education, higher education, business sector, and school districts.
The SC EdTech Conference is the primary project of the South Carolina Association for Educational Technology (SCAET). SCAET is a nonprofit association organized under the South Carolina Nonprofit Organization Code. Founded in 1984 as the South Carolina Association of Data Processing Directors, this organization evolved to become the South Carolina Council for Computers in Education in 1988, and ultimately SCAET in 1994. The purpose of the association is to promote the innovative, intelligent, and responsible use of technology in education. The Association goals are realized through the hosting of several projects and programs, including the annual educational technology conference, SC EdTech. In addition, SCAET sponsors several events throughout the year and is a long-time member of ISTE. The SCAET sponsored Technology Innovative Awards Program (TIPs) encourages the state’s schools and districts to create original technology-based programs for students. The SCAET Scholarship Program allows future educators the chance to learn innovative techniques that they can take into the classroom at some point. Both are awarded during the SC EdTech each year.
The SCAET Board works together throughout the year to choose the best sessions, keynotes speakers, and technology to offer during the conference. By organizing and hosting the EdTech Conference, SCAET enables our state’s educators to learn about new technology practices, and receive professional development credit while doing so.