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KPBSD educators honored by United States Distance Learning Association

Kenai Peninsula Borough School District
Contact: Pegge Erkeneff, 907.714.8888

News Release
Prestigious Videoconferencing Technology Award

Soldotna, May 12, 2016—Two KPBSD educators were honored by the United States Distance Learning Association (USDLA) in St. Louis, Missouri, on May 10, 2016. USDLA awarded Rob Sparks [Soldotna Prep School] and Greg Zorbas [Kenai Central High School] with the Best Practices Gold Level award for excellence in distance learning teaching, for their innovation and excellence in “Videoconferencing Technology – K-12 Education.”

Educator Greg Zorbas, Kenai Central High School, videoconference in Classroom Without Walls (CWOW), and Global Nomads, May 13, 2015, 6:00 AM

Educator Greg Zorbas, Kenai Central High School, videoconference in Classroom Without Walls (CWOW), and Global Nomads, May 13, 2015, 6:00 AM

“Greg and Rob have long been leaders in utilizing technology to expand learning opportunities for our students,” said Sean Dusek, Superintendent. “They have also worked very hard to meet individual student needs every day and have leveraged videoconferencing to do this. I am very proud of their efforts and accomplishments. They are very deserving of this award and I appreciate their efforts very much.”

“Although it is the United States Distance Learning Association, it is actually an international organization recognizing efforts from around the world,” said Rob Sparks. “It has been humbling the number of people who have come up to me and Greg to say ‘Oh, you’re the Kenai guys….’ The Kenai Peninsula Borough School District is recognized worldwide as a leader in innovative and effective uses of video telecommunications!”

“We put our students in front of twenty-two industry professionals interactively this semester and they all told the students they will be ahead of their peers at the next level—this validates what Rob and I are doing,” said Greg Zorbas. “Professionally every time we connect with a guest presenter or connect to another classroom everybody has to bring their A game. Lessons get better and better because in this environment we are constantly getting feedback on what worked, but also how we can make it better. I have been gone for three days to attend this conference and receive this award, and I can’t count the number of emails and instant messages I’ve received from students—this tells me they are engaged in what we are doing.”

“As a premier organization for the entire distance learning profession, we are honoring the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District as a leader in the industry,” said Dr. John G. Flores, Executive Director of USDLA and Program Professor at Nova Southeastern University. “KPBSD has raised the bar of excellence and we are truly honored by KPBSD contributions within all distance learning constituencies.”

“This year’s USDLA Awards recipient, Kenai Peninsula Borough School District, represents the finest examples of online courses, best practices, and leadership in our field. The depth and breadth of the USDLA membership allows us to engage with leaders from higher education, K-12, industry, military, and government who daily demonstrate the power of distance learning. We are so very proud and excited to be able to recognize this level of excellence,” said Mr. George Collins, President of USDLA.

Link

Educator Rob Sparks, Soldotna Prep, video teleconference (VTC) certificate students with KCHS and students in Palestine, April 11, 2016, 8:00 PM

Educator Rob Sparks, Soldotna Prep, video teleconference (VTC) certificate students with KCHS and students in Palestine, April 11, 2016, 8:00 PM

ss 2016 May Zorbas and Sparks

United States Distance Learning Association awards, 2016

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