The 2016 Best-in-Network Winner is…

May 23, 2016

Brette Woessner

We are thrilled to announce our Best-in-Network 2016 winner!  Without further ado, we would like to congratulate Courtney VandeBunte from i3 Academy at Flagler Palm Coast High School and her project submission: Prosthetics for Paws.

New Tech Network annually gives the “Best in Network” award to a teacher who exemplifies the goal of a seamless blending of active exploration, application, and authenticity with academic rigor that is thoughtful both in learning and assessment practices. A project worthy of this award creates an exemplary learning opportunity as chosen by a committee of peers.

The field of project submissions continued the trend of being more rich, more inspiring, and more competitive each year. Projects were submitted in varied subject areas and at all grade levels, truly representing our growing, K-12 network of schools. This year, we have invited students to join the winner at the conference for special sessions and a chance to present at the NTAC opening session.

We would like to extend a special thanks to the committee members who thoughtfully and thoroughly reviewed each and every submission: Leah Hinderlider (Rochester Zebra New Tech in Rochester, IN), Sheila Hudson (Clive Learning Academy in Windsor Heights, IA), Holli Rausch (New Technology High School in Sioux Falls, SD), Corina Favela (Cougar New Tech @ Franklin in El Paso, TX), Nicholas Hawley (Niles New Tech in Niles, MI), Kala Gabler (Samueli Academy in Santa Ana, CA), Lauren Cooper (Washington Discovery Academy in Plymouth, IN), Justin Miller (West Des Moines Community Schools in West Desmoines, IA), Danika Kroeger (Imagine Prep Superstition in Apache Junction, AZ), Michael Delaney (Carolina High School in Greenville, SC), Andrew Baker (Carolina High School in Greenville, SC), Wanda Littlejohn (Carolina High School in Greenville, SC), Shelley Juhl-O’Brien (Samueli Academy in Santa Ana, CA), Bonnie Alcorn (New Tech Institute in Evansville, IN), Kim Dawson (Applied Technology Center High School in Montebello, CA).

Following are just a few of the enthusiastic responses from Committee Members:

“Prosthetics for Paws involved tools, tasks and processes that required the students to push their limits. The most powerful and effective projects for students allow them to feel like they can have an impact on the world and this project most definitely had a concrete impact on the lives of both two and four leggedfriends.”

“This project was very creative in adapting to an authentic experience of creating prosthetics for animals. I can see this project being expanded and used by other schools around the Network. I, myself, learned about the importance of 3D printing.”

“The learning was so authentic and engaging. As the facilitator, she set up so many scaffolds and ways for the students to get feedback. It is a perfect example of a PBL project with every learning outcome addressed.”

Here is a sneak peek at the video submission to learn more about Prosthetics for PAWS.  Congratulations, Courtney! Your work inspires us all!

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