CCLP panel explores technology and education with FCC Chairman Genachowski

On Tuesday, September 21, CCLP Director Geoffrey Cowan (pictured, right) led a discussion on the intersection of technology and education in the 21st century. The panel, featuring FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski (left), kicked off a half-day event called “Back to School: Learning in a Digital Age,” sponsored by USC Annenberg’s Center on Communication Leadership (CCLP), Common Sense Media, PBS Kids and The Children’s Partnership. Leaders in technology and education discussed the benefits of equipping children and educators digitally – both inside and outside of the classroom.

“The need far exceeds the risk,” said Genachowski. “When our schools win, our country wins. No kid should graduate from the 8th grade without being digitally literate.”

Chairman Genachowski also announced the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has plans to adopt a modernization of its “E-Rate” program, which is a fund that helps libraries and schools get better technology.

The panel featured Karen Cator, Director of Education Technology for the U.S. Department of Education, who identified access as the number one issue in education today.

“Print-based classrooms need to make a transition to a digital space,” Cator said.

Also on the panel were Murugan Pal, Co-Founder & President, CK-12 Foundation; Shawn Covell, Vice President for Government Affairs, Qualcomm; Patrick Gaston, President, Verizon Foundation; and Danny Bowman, President, Integrated Solutions Group, Sprint Nextel.


The panel discussion can be accessed at under Back to School: Learning and Growing in a Digital Age.