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Digital Harbor High School Briefing Highlights Student Technology Use in Baltimore City Schools 

BALTIMORE, MD. April 25, 2006-- NetDay, (, the national education technology nonprofit group, held a briefing today at Digital Harbor High School, to highlight the participation of Baltimore City Schools in Speak Up 2005, a national online survey asking students and teachers questions about their technology use and their ideas about 21st century learning skills.  The briefing, the first one focusing on a single school district’s participation, featured a presentation by NetDay CEO, Julie Evans, panel discussion with students and teachers from the school, recognition of five Baltimore City Schools and remarks from Mario Armstrong, Mayor Martin O’Malley’s Technology Advocate and Mike Pitoff, Director - Classroom, Teacher and School Support Services, Baltimore City Public School System.

For the past three years NetDay has facilitated a national online survey of students and teachers. In the 2005 survey 9,500 students and 587 teachers in Baltimore participated, ranking the school system in the top the top 5% of all urban city school districts taking part in the survey nationwide.  Five Baltimore city schools -- BOOKER T. WASHINGTON MIDDLE SCHOOL, DIGITAL HARBOR HIGH SCHOOL, FREDERICK DOUGLASS HIGH SCHOOL, HAMILTON ELEMENTARY/MIDDLE SCHOOL and NORTHWESTERN HIGH SCHOOL were recognized as NetDay Speak Up 100 schools, America's top schools for encouraging student voices in local education planning.

 “I am very impressed by the extent to which Baltimore City Schools have reached out to students and teachers during Speak Up 2005 and applaud the leadership of Mayor O’Malley, the school system, and the students, teachers and administrators at Digital Harbor High School. The information from these surveys will help drive new ideas and innovations in education and technology and ultimately improve the teaching and learning process in Baltimore,” noted Julie Evans, CEO of NetDay.

Some key finding from the NetDay 2005 survey for Baltimore City Schools:

  • Students in Baltimore are more interested in future careers in technology than their peers around the country.   A higher percentage of Baltimore students say that they are involved with local technology planning or decision-making at their schools.


  • 53% of the students polled in the Speak Up surveys feel very positively about online classes.  Likewise, 61% of the teachers polled believe online classes are a good option for their own learning as well.
  • Over 50% of Baltimore's middle and high school students who participated in Speak Up say that good tech skills are important for doing well in school, success in college and getting a job. 


“I am eager to use the data from Speak Up 2005 in helping to shape technology policy in Baltimore. This information will be of great benefit in our new effort, “Connected Communities-Connected City", said Mario Armstrong, Mayor O’Malley’s Technology Advocate.

NetDay has conducted an annual online survey for the past three years, collecting the viewpoints of over 562,000 K-12 students from all 50 states, as well as 26,000 teachers. The Speak Up data represents the largest collection of authentic, unfiltered student views on technology and education ever assembled. The results show today’s students are very technically savvy, approach their lives differently because of technology, use it more as they get older and enjoy greater access to computers and the Internet at home than at school.
Over 185,000 students and 15,000 teachers participated in Speak Up 2005. This year’s surveys included specific questions regarding science education, 21st century workforce skills and the role of technology in driving innovation. Our goal with these questions was to actively engage America’s students and teachers in the national dialogue on how to maintain our country’s competitiveness in the 21st century and sustaining our global scientific and technological superiority.
The findings of the Speak Up surveys are shared with local, state and national education officials integrated into educational planning at every level and are used to make decisions on issues such as technology use in school. Examples of the impact of the data on national policy discussions include:

  • The US Department of Education used Speak Up data in the development of its 2005 National Education Technology Plan, Golden Age in American Education: How the Internet, the Law and Today’s Students are Revolutionizing Expectation.
  • Visions 2020.2: Student Views on Transforming Education and Training Through Advanced Technologies, a report developed in partnership with the U.S. Department of Education and the U.S. Department of Commerce, is based upon the Speak Up 2004 data and offers a clear picture of how students want to use technology for learning.
  • Student Views on Technology for Learning: Students Speak Up to the President captures 67,000 student responses to the question “What is the one thing you would like to tell the president about how you use technology for learning?”  

Speak Up 2005 was made possible through the generous support of Dell Inc and BellSouth Foundation.


NetDay Speak Up is a national initiative of Project Tomorrow, the new nonprofit organization formed with the merger of NetDay and Project Tomorrow in September 2005.  The mission of the new combined organization is to support and promote the effective and appropriate use of science, math and technology resources in K–12 education so that every student has the opportunity to fully participate in today’s global economy and community.  We are dedicated to preparing today’s students to be tomorrow’s innovators, leaders and engaged citizens.