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Blackboard to Power Online Community For 25th National Educational Computing Conference (NECC)

International Society for Technology in Education Partners with Blackboard to Extend NECC Conference Experience for 20,000 teachers, technology coordinators  
5/11/2004 , Washington, DC - Blackboard Inc. announced today that it has partnered with the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) to help create an online community to extend the benefits of ISTE’s National Educational Computing Conference (NECC).

The Blackboard Portal SystemTM will provide conference participants, sponsors and other interested parties with a forum that will deliver synchronous and asynchronous discussions among attendees on more than 10 different topics. The Blackboard forum topics will include distance learning, professional development, technology integration models, and assessment. Education technology leaders will moderate these forums and sessions will be led by conference presenters. The Blackboard-ISTE site will be live through September to enhance the value of the conference for participants. Interested parties can enroll in the forum by visiting and following the simple instructions on the login page.

The 25th annual NECC conference, entitled “Jammin’ and Jazzin’ with Technology,” will be held at the Morial Convention Center in New Orleans from June 20-23, 2004. ISTE is a nonprofit professional organization dedicated to improving teaching and learning by advancing the effective use of technology in K-12 education. Nearly 20,000 teachers, technology coordinators, library media specialists, teacher educators, administrators, policy makers and education industry representatives are expected to attend the event.

“NECC attendees will be able to participate more completely in the conference and establish relationships with other conference goers, all as they gain firsthand experience with Blackboard’s community-building technology,” said Matthew Pittinsky, Chairman of Blackboard. “This is the first time Blackboard has offered an online community to support a conference, and we are excited to bring this opportunity to the NECC attendees.”

“The online NECC community gives participants yet another way to connect to one another, learn with and from each other, and explore new technologies with application for teaching and learning,” said Leslie S. Conery, PhD, ISTE Deputy CEO and NECC Conference Chair.

About Blackboard Inc.
Blackboard is a leading provider of enterprise software and services to the education industry. The Company’s product line consists of five software applications bundled in two suites, the Blackboard Academic Suite TM and the Blackboard Commerce Suite TM. Blackboard’s clients include colleges, universities, schools and other education providers, as well as textbook publishers and student-focused merchants that serve education providers and their students. Blackboard is headquartered in Washington, D.C., with offices and staff in North America, Europe and Asia.

About ISTE
The International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) is the trusted source in education technology for professional development, knowledge generation, and advocacy. A nonprofit membership organization, ISTE provides leadership and service to improve teaching and learning by advancing the effective use of technology in K–12 and teacher education. Home of the National Educational Technology Standards (NETS), the Center for Applied Research in Education Technology (CARET), and National Educational Computing Conference (NECC), ISTE represents more than 85,000 worldwide leaders and potential leaders in educational technology. We support our members with information, networking opportunities, and guidance as they face the challenge of integrating technology into schools. 

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