First and foremost, I would like to thank those of you who presented sessions at the 41st Annual CEDPA Conference. The primary goal of the conference is to share ideas and experiences with fellow K-12 technologists, and there would be no conference without you presenters!!!


So, how did those in attendance receive the speaker program? Does anyone care to comment?


“The breakout sessions were great. I would have liked another full day of speaker breakouts to attend ones I couldn’t see on Wednesday. Then have full Friday with vendors.”


“Need more time (longer sessions).”


“…Thursday lunch was good.”


“Great (closing speaker).”


“…Great conference!!”


These are a few of the comments we received from the conference evaluation forms that were in the conference folders. Were all of the comments positive? No. Were there more positive than negative comments? Yes. We also received some suggestions to make next year’s conference even better.


For those of you that completed, or at least read the conference survey, you might recall that in addition to space for comments, there was also space to rate each of the conference sessions on:


   Relevance to K-12 Technologists

   Speakers Knowledge of the Topic

   Effectiveness of the Presentation


For those of you who would like to have a look at the numbers, we offer the following averages (on a scale of 1-5):

Relevance           Knowledge     Effectiveness

Opening Keynote      4.00        4.13        3.48

Breakout Sessions   4.27        4.29        3.82

Hands-On Sessions 4.22        4.30        3.09

Tech Talks                4.57        4.48        3.71

Closing Keynote       3.94        4.65        4.41

Overall Averages      4.24        4.32        3.73


Interesting? Yes. Useful? We hope so. Why the hesitation? Because although we had over 400 conference attendees at the most recent conference, only 32 surveys were completed and returned. Unfortunately, this is not network television, and there are no Nielson Ratings for the CEDPA Conference. With only 32 survey responses, it is difficult to draw conclusions.


The comments that were shared by attendees were overwhelmingly positive. The CEDPA Board relies on comments from you, the attendees, to determine what was well received and what improvements need to be made for future conferences. This year, our attempt to glean some quantitative and qualitative information through a survey was a little less successful than we had hoped for.


From all outward appearances, the conference provided valuable information to the K-12 technology community on a wide variety of topics. But we would like to hear more from you. For example, the survey results said you thought the “hands-on” sessions were good. Comments we heard indicated that “hands-on” sessions should be more “hands-on.” Should this type of session be offered in the future? According to our survey respondents, the answer is “yes.” As such, you can look for more hands-on sessions at future CEDPA Conferences.

Another section of the survey revolved around an idea that has been around for a few years: a CEDPA Mini-Conference (one day), held about 6 months from the Annual CEDPA conference. Should we put on a CEDPA Mini-Conference? If so, what type of sessions should be presented? Should there be a small Vendor Show at the Mini-Conference? Well, the survey results said that… Actually, the board is still debating what the results (32 responses from 400 attendees) said. If I weren’t a board member, I would like to be a “fly on the wall” to hear the debate on this subject.


What topics would you like to see in the next conference speaker program? Is there someone that you think would be a good speaker at the conference? If so, please let a board member know and we’ll try to arrange it. What can be done to improve not only the speaker program, but also the conference as a whole? Please let us know. Board member e-mail addresses and phone numbers are available on the CEDPA web site at


We want the CEDPA conference to be an enjoyable and valuable experience for all attendees!

Mike Caskey
Director of Information Systems
Stanislaus County Office of Education