A newsmaker you should know: Hampton educator doubly honored for his work in technology

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Ed McKaveney could be called "Mr. Hampton Township," and it would be a fitting title.

Mr. McKaveney, 39, grew up in Hampton, graduated from Hampton High School, still lives in Hampton and is technology director for Hampton School District.

He works with local organizations, including Hampton police, to teach people about Internet safety and technology use.

And his wife, Amy, is a math teacher at Hampton High School.

Mr. McKaveney recently received two honors for his work with the district -- Outstanding Leader of the Year from the Pennsylvania Association for Educational Communications and Technology and the 2013 Withrow Chief Technology Officer Award from the Consortium for School Networking.

The Pennsylvania Association for Educational Communications and Technology is the state's affiliate of the International Society for Technology in Education, which has a mission to support the use of technology in education. The nonprofit honored Mr. McKaveney for his efforts to use technology for instructional purposes in the district.

"I was selected by my peers, so this honor means so much to me," Mr. McKaveney said.

As part of the award, Mr. Mc-Kaveney's travel expenses will be paid to the national International Society for Technology in Education conference in June in San Antonio and he is automatically nominated for the society's national award.

The Consortium for School Networking is a national professional organization for school technology leaders. Its mission is to "empower educational leaders to leverage technology to realize engaging learning environments," according to a statement announcing Mr. McKaveney's award.

He was honored by the consortium for implementing a districtwide mobile applications course curriculum, working for professional development and authoring a $20,000 science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics grant that was awarded to the district. The STEM grant was used to purchase technology resources.

Mr. McKaveney was hired by the Hampton School District in 2004 after working at Duquesne University in multimedia services.

"It was a good opportunity to come back to Hampton, and I was ready for a new challenge in my career," he said. "This is a dynamic community and I wanted to be part of the district."

The constant changes in technology provide new challenges every day, he said.

"It can certainly be challenging to keep up with all the advances, but I love emerging technology with instruction and watching our students run with it," he said.

To keep up with technology, Mr. McKaveney plays an active role in the consortium, serving as co-chairman of the chief technology leader special interest group of the Pennsylvania chapter. He also was one of the first in the country to receive the Certified Education Technology Leader status from the consortium.

Mr. McKaveney has a bachelor's degree in biology and chemistry and a master's degree in multimedia technology from Duquesne University.

L. Jo Welter, assistant superintendent at Hampton, said Mr. McKaveney is very deserving of the honors.

"He is brilliant, creative and forward thinking -- that is why we are where we are with technology as a district," she said.

"He also has a calm about him. When something goes wrong, he remains calm and positive and fixes things almost just by being there," she said with a laugh.

His role in the district sometimes requires working 24/7 if a system goes down or he has to activate the notification system to parents in inclement weather.

"We have a team, it isn't just me, but we go in when we need," he said.

Mr. McKaveney said he gets to try out some ideas at home with his 3-year-old daughter, Maria, who uses her dad's iPad.

"She tends to take it over, but it makes me realize that by the time she gets to school, she will have full working knowledge of using iPads," he said. "That is something I need to keep in mind with this upcoming generation of students."


Kathleen Ganster, freelance writer: suburbanliving@post-gazette.com.


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