Dana Castine, the Florida Union Free School District’s Director for Math, Science, and Technology, has been recognized by the New York State Association for Computers and Technologies in Education (NYSCATE) for her contributions to her profession and to the association.
Ms. Castine has been inducted NYSCATE’s Volunteer Hall of Fame during the association’s winter conference, which was held in Rochester. She attended the conference as a guest and presenter.
Ms. Castine, Florida’s “tech guru,” has long worked to ensure that Florida students have access to up-to-date technology and are prepared for an ever-changing world, said Florida Union Free School District Superintendent Jan Jehring. Last year, Ms. Castine spearheaded the district’s successful effort to put a Google Chromebook into the hands of each student, was instrumental in the launch of the district’s redesigned website, and has introduced several technology programs and initiatives for both students and staff.
In bestowing the Hall of Fame honor, NYSCATE noted Ms. Castine’s many accomplishments, including:
- Ms. Castine brought a coveted STEAM workshop “Makey Makey” to the Florida Union Free School District. Educators from throughout Orange, Sullivan and Ulster counties attended. The workshop is often held only in large cities and, with travel, can be too costly to attend. Ms. Castine’s success in bringing it to Orange County created a terrific opportunity for local teachers and administrators.
- In preparation for the NYSCATE conference, she reviewed presentation proposals of dozens of perspective presenters, helping organizers select the most relevant and dynamic speakers for the event. Ms. Castine presented as well, leading a workshop titled “Navigating a Technology Audit.” Also at the conference, Ms. Castine and Rudolf Gordon, the district’s Computer Network Specialists, where members of a panel discussion about ClassLink, a single sign-on portal designed for schools and school districts.
- She served as “Ed Tech Ambassador,” sharing insights and information on multiple social media platforms, at the Ed Tech conference in Oneonta.
Ms. Castine said receiving the award was an honor, but she was especially excited to attend the conference and share ideas, experiences, and knowledge with other technology and education experts.
“Getting inducted into the Volunteer Hall of Fame was a very nice surprise,” said Ms. Castine, “But the best part was interfacing with other people who are passionate about new technologies and exploring how we can continue to bring those technologies to our students here in Florida.”
The NYSCATE Volunteer Hall of Fame was established in 2015 to recognize members whose contributions to the profession and service to the association have been significant, substantial and long-standing. Hall of Fame recipients are educational leaders, collaborate well with other groups and organizations, and serve as superior role models.