District Enhances Role of Innovation and Technology

The Fox Chapel Area School District has revised and enhanced the position of coordinator of educational technology on the administrative team. Scott Hand, formerly in the coordinator position, is the newly named director of innovation and technology. In his revised role, Mr. Hand will work to establish the district as a leader of innovation. "We have been involved in innovative instruction for many years and now we are poised to multiply our efforts in innovation and implementation, professional development, and showcasing the exciting and expanding instruction in our district," Mr. Hand says.

In addition to introducing innovative practices in technology to the schools, Mr. Hand will be connecting with outside organizations to strengthen professional networks within, among, and between districts, nonprofits, and industry. "After introducing and evaluating current and future technologies, teams will help enhance a K-12 curriculum ensuring all students are exposed to high-quality STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, Mathematics) experiences," according to Mr. Hand.

With coding and robotics instruction already a part of the middle school and high school curriculum, the district has begun exploring introducing elementary students, including kindergarteners, to coding and programming experiences and bringing robotics to the intermediate elementary grades. As technology quickly changes and evolves, the district hopes to provide students with exposure to these innovative experiences that enhance the core instructional programs, as well as capture and strengthen students' intellectual curiosity about the world around them.

Mr. Hand began working as a teacher at Fox Chapel Area High School in 2003 and he was appointed as the district's coordinator of educational technology in 2011. Mr. Hand was awarded a master's degree in business education and completed the instructional technology specialist certification from Robert Morris University. He also received his bachelor of arts degree in communications and English from Robert Morris University and is currently pursuing a doctorate degree in distance education from Regent University.