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The nine must-read tweets of the Governor's Economic and Education Summit

State Superintendent Mike Flanagan presents at the Governor's 2015 Education and Economic Summit.

State Superintendent Mike Flanagan presents at the Governor's 2015 Education and Economic Summit.

Kate Snyder, APR, is the editor of InspirED Michigan and serves as principal strategist of Piper & Gold Public Relations in Lansing. She recently attended the Governor’s Education and Economic Summit in Detroit and brought us back this report for InspirED Michigan readers.

Earlier this month, hundreds of Michigan’s most passionate educators, public servants and business leaders gathered in the RenCen for GES15, the Governor’s Education and Economic Summit.

Skilled trades, prosperity regions and CTE were the buzzwords of the two-day summit, and they were everywhere in the stream of #GES15 posts filling the web. 

At the summit, I voraciously followed the hashtag and tweeted away myself, enjoying the digital conversation almost as much as the face-to-face one.

Here are my nine must-read tweets of GES15, and why they matter:

Brian J Partie Jr ‏@brianpartie 
What happens when industry and education speak the same language? ...Great things for our #students!!!

Why this tweet matters: In his welcome address, Governor Rick Snyder stressed the importance of business and education collaboration, and the theme continued throughout the summit. Even the combination of the individual economic summit and education summit into a single event emphasized the message.

Steve Willobee ‏@SteveWillobee  
"Creativity is almost as important as literacy!" Tom Moran

Why this tweet matters: No matter where you turned, no matter which sessions you attended, the importance of fostering student creativity, problem solving and innovation was the talk of the summit.

Kyle Feldscher ‏@Kyle_Feldscher  
@melodyarabo: Some kids "don’t do well on standardized tests because they don’t have standardized minds.”

Kyle Guerrant ‏@kguerrant  
Students remember their relationship with their teacher more than the content their teacher provided them - well said @melodyarabo

Why these tweets matter: Michigan Teacher of the Year Melody Arabo, a third grade teacher at Keith Elementary in the Walled Lake Consolidated School District, was a highlight of the conference. Her poignant and moving keynote put right out there some of the harsh truths today’s teachers face while also instilling a feeling of hope. As photos of Arabo with her first-ever class – kindergarteners – transitioned to images of her hugging with the now young adults, the true impact of a teacher who cares could be felt by every person in the room.

Arnold Weinfeld ‏@mrfeld2  
A child's destiny should not depend on their zip code. Opportunity for all.

Micki O'Neil ‏@mickioneil  
Flanagan discusses poverty. Kids can't focus when hungry and scared. We are ALL responsible for needed change to support students.

Why these tweets matter: State Superintendent Mike Flanagan charmed the group with his usual blend of humor and candor, but only after a touching introduction recognizing and thanking him for his many years of service and leadership that brought the crowd to their feet. Not one to sugarcoat, Flanagan quickly transitioned from grateful to confronting a harsh truth: when our children are facing insurmountable problems outside of school, it will be virtually impossible for us to educate them inside the school. And as a society, we have to care enough to make sure all students are able to come to school ready to learn.

Ari B. Adler ‏@aribadler 
“People are daring to imagine a different future than they thought possible just a few years ago.” ~ @briancalley

Why this tweet matters: Ultimately, GES15 laid out a digitally connected and jobs-focused vision for the future of education that embraced Career and Technical Education and facilitated open and engaged conversations between K-12, higher education, public officials and the business community.
And here at InspirED Michigan, we’re honored and thrilled to be sharing with you some of the many stories of those inspiring visions for tomorrow’s school children that our Michigan public schools have in store, and the innovative realities that look nothing like the school many of us knew as children. Thank you for taking this journey with us.
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