SETDA Header Press ReleasesFor Immediate Release

Tracy S. Weeks, Ph.D.
Executive Director
202-715-6636 x700
[email protected]

Students from Utah’s Mountain Heights Academy Address
National Education Leaders at SETDA Event in Washington D.C.

October 25, 2017 (Washington, D.C.) – SETDA, the principal membership association representing U.S. state and territorial digital learning leaders, honored Mountain Heights Academy as the winner of the 2017 Student Voices Award. Students addressed over 250 education leaders in the Education Forum audience at SETDA’s Leadership Summit in National Harbor, Maryland. The Education Forum is an annual event that shines a spotlight on the full scope of the digital transformation of policy and practice underway in K-12 education.

Each year for the past decade, SETDA has honored one school across the USA with the Student Voices Award; this is the first time a Utah school has received the award. The Mountain Heights Academy students presented to an audience of state leaders and guests from national education organizations, the U.S. Department of Education, policy makers and corporate partners, sharing specific examples of how technology tools and resources provide them with personalized learning opportunities, ways to collaborate with other students around Utah and access courses outside of the traditional school day. The students also gave examples of project-based learning including their Operation Bee project, which is dedicated to increasing the populations of bees by educating elementary students about their importance in our environment and communities.

“Our team was humbled to have been recognized by SETDA. We enjoyed sharing our approach to education – leveraging technology’s promise for student success – at the Education Forum. As students become more involved in the creation of Open Educational Resource (OER) content, they join their teachers as instructional designers, which in turn facilitates critical thinking skills we hope all students achieve,” said DeLaina Tonks, Director, Mountain Heights Academy.

“Congratulations to Mountain Heights Academy for winning the Elsie Brumback scholarship,” shared Sydnee Dickson, Ed.D., Utah State Superintendent of Public Instruction. “Many Utah students have benefited from the excellent personalized learning opportunities provided for them at Mountain Heights and now they can share this information with the world through this recognition. The school’s inclusion of students in course selection, development, and their utilization of open educational resources demonstrates a unique approach that enhances student learning and prepares them to make informed choices for their future,” Dickson added.

“SETDA is thrilled that Mountain Heights could share the innovative ways their students and teachers are leveraging technology for high quality, collaborative learning,” stated Dr. Tracy Weeks, Executive Director, SETDA.

Learn more about the Student Voices award and past winners here:



The State Educational Technology Directors Association (SETDA), founded in 2001, is the national non-profit association representing the interests of U.S. state and territorial educational technology leadership. SETDA’s mission is to build and increase the capacity of state and national leaders to improve education through technology policy and practice. For more information the Student Voices,

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