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Cisco Hosts Second Annual K-12 Education Day


Education thought leaders, legislators, educators and administrators met to showcase accomplishments and share ideas about how technology is changing today’s learning environment. Cisco® awarded Charles County Public Schools for their exceptional leadership and is highlighting the district’s North Point High School as a model 21st Century School.

North Point High School opened in August of 2005, with a remarkable commitment to the use of technology to transform teaching and learning. Charles County Public Schools Superintendent, James E. Richmond is keenly aware of the importance of preparing students for today’s global economy, and technology has been an important component of the school since its inception. Richmond is dedicated to having these resources available for all students in the district. This is highlighted by the fact that North Point High School was not merely built as a magnet school, but instead all schools in the district equitably use networked technology for seamless communication and access.

“Charles County Public Schools knows the importance of 21st Century skills, of which Information and Communications Technologies literacy is a component and tool for creating an engaging learning environment,” commented Richmond.

Approaching its two year anniversary, North Point High School uses the advanced technology to teach, protect and communicate with students, parents, staff and community. Hands-on classrooms teach the skills needed in a variety of real-life work environments such as nursing, engineering, computer networking (North Point is a Cisco Networking Academy®), culinary arts, architecture, biotechnology and more. Wireless access allows teachers and administrators anywhere in the district to communicate with, share information and protect students and staff.

Charles County’s commitment to use of technology has been embraced by teachers and students alike. Teachers are creating their own curriculum that moves beyond textbooks and chalkboards to include interactive whiteboards, virtual field trips, and increasingly immersive classrooms. Students are much more engaged because they are using real technology skills to enhance their education - future architects use the latest design tools, laptops are ubiquitous, and students download test tips to their iPods.

“Charles County Public Schools provides an outstanding example of how to intelligently apply technology. The district has worked with Cisco as a strategic partner to create a world class learning environment for all of its students. We encourage other educational organizations from around the world to visit North Point. And those that have agree it is a model school that has created a ’smart, realistic and affordable’ learning environment helping students succeed in today’s global economy. Cisco is proud to announce Charles County Public Schools as this year’s ’21st Century School’ award recipient,” said Charles Fadel, Global Lead for Education at Cisco.

Event attendees started the day by viewing broadcast news announcements produced daily by students. The event included a tour of North Point High School, a virtual tour of the district’s Matthew Henson Middle School and lunch prepared by North Point’s culinary students. Additionally, a round table discussion, facilitated by Woody Sessoms, Vice President at Cisco Systems focused on 21st Century learning and the impact of technology. The panel included esteemed education professionals:

Maryland State Superintendent of Schools, Dr. Nancy Grasmick, Maryland’s “First Lady of Education” and the state’s first female superintendent
Mississippi Education Initiative Partner, Hattiesburg, MS Superintendent, Dr. Annie Wimbish
Partnership for 21st Century Skills, President, Ken Kay
Charles County Public Schools, Superintendent, James Richmond
Cisco Vice-President of Global Accounts, Woody Sessoms will facilitate the panel.

Plus the audience learned more about the Cisco 21st Century Schools Program from Executive Director, Bill Fowler and the Cisco Networking Academy Program from National Initiatives Manager, Carroll McGillin.

About Charles County Public Schools
Located in Southern Maryland, Charles County is considered part of the Washington, D.C. metro area. Elementary schools are composed of students from pre-kindergarten to grade five; middle schools have students from sixth to eighth grade; and high schools serve students in grades nine through twelve. Charles County Public Schools aims to provide an opportunity for all school-aged children to receive an academically challenging, quality education that builds character, equips for leadership and prepares for life, in an environment that is safe and conducive to learning. Charles County Public Schools is composed of 33 schools and 8 centers including 20 Elementary Schools, 7 Middle Schools, and 6 High Schools.

For more information, contact Katie O’Malley-Simpson, Coordinator, Communications/Publications

About Cisco Systems
Cisco, (NASDAQ: CSCO), is the worldwide leader in networking that transforms how people connect, communicate and collaborate. Information about Cisco can be found at For ongoing news, please go to


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