March 11, 2016 -- Mentor Schools Superintendent Matthew Miller was named to the National School Boards Association’s 20 to Watch Education Technology Leaders. This is a prestigious honor recognizing only 20 leaders from across the country for their ability to inspire colleagues to explore and embrace innovative technology solutions and instructional strategies that contribute to high-quality learning experiences for all students.
“This year’s '20 to Watch' honorees highlight how formal and informal professional networks help them identify and share the innovative approaches that are truly making a difference,” said Thomas J. Gentzel, NSBA, Executive Director. “Showcasing the initiatives of these educators can help other district leaders identify where there might be opportunities for new approaches in their own communities to address the digital-use divide identified in the U.S. Department of Education’s National Education Technology Plan. These teachers and administrators, with support from their school boards, share a vision for learning that will prepare students for future success.”
Mr. Miller was selected as a 20 to Watch leader based on the many new initiatives happening in Mentor Public Schools since his arrival in 2012, and the district’s willingness to share resources with educators from across the country. Mentor Schools is focused on providing innovative instruction that meets the needs of all learners. In today’s digital world where information is available in an instant and right at our fingertips, we’ve all changed the way we learn new things or find facts. Our job as educators is to adapt and incorporate those resources, including technology, into our curriculum while teaching the standards set forth by the State of Ohio.
Under Mr. Miller’s leadership, Mentor Schools is embracing that philosophy. Students and teachers have access to devices and internet resources more now than ever before. Our district is a proud participant of the prestigious and nationwide League of Innovative Schools, and Mr. Miller was selected to share best practices with other superintendents from across the nation at the White House through the U.S. Department of Education’s Future Ready and Go Open initiatives. The White House initiatives united school leaders who share the belief that all students should have access to high quality learning materials 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Probably most noticeably though, the changes Mentor Schools has been able to implement after earning a $13.8 million dollar Straight A Grant, in conjunction with Kirtland Schools, from the State of Ohio. The Straight A grant provided funds for the following projects: renovating the Mentor High School media center, now called The Hub; building a 16,000 square foot professional development center called Paradigm; renovating 63 Mentor High School classrooms; and providing MacBooks for all students in grades 9-12. Additionally, the grant provided funding for professional development opportunities for our staff, who worked diligently to be ready to implement new curriculum into their classrooms and lessons.
This is the 10th year for NSBA’s 20 to Watch program. Mr. Miller joins three other Mentor Schools educators who were named to the list in previous years, making Mentor Schools the only district in the country to have an educator named 20 to Watch in four consecutive years.