Keynote Speakers

Dr. Randy LaBonte
“Energizing a walk on the tech side: rethinking e-learning success”

Digital learning is here to stay, but learners can be left behind. Randy Labonte will present both the promise and the challenge of digital technologies. Drawing on his extensive experience in BC, Alberta and across Canada, he will talk about how to achieve equitable access to learning while supporting both students and teachers in online environments.

Dr. Randy LaBonte is the CEO of CANeLearn, a national non-profit e-learning network dedicated to supporting online and blended learning practices in Canada. Randy has more than 30 years of experience as teacher, administrator, and consultant. His doctoral research on leadership in online learning led to his work supporting changes in BC policy, agreements, and e-learning standards. His consulting work has also included distance education support for Alberta rural and remote learners and providers at the secondary and post-secondary level. Randy’s publications include papers on quality, standards and leadership for e-learning. He is an adjunct professor at Vancouver Island University where he teaches online courses for K-12 educators shifting practices to online learning environments.

Eleanor Newman
“Watercooler moments—positioning adult education in your board”

Graduation ceremonies are one way to celebrate the success of adult education programs. However, to make reasoned decisions, senior board officials need data and evidence. Eleanor Newman will talk about current pressures for system leaders and how adult educators can frame their messages for best results.

Eleanor Newman is the Executive Director of the Eastern Ontario Staff Development Network, coordinating regional professional learning for nine district school boards, including the regional Adult Education Strategy project. Her extensive experience includes serving as the Senior Executive Officer with the Literacy and Numeracy Secretariat of the Ontario Ministry of Education, working with leaders in school districts across the province to achieve implementation of effective strategies for teaching, learning, and leading.  A Supervisory Officer for 15 years, Eleanor was Director of Education at the Renfrew County District School Board and Superintendent of Education with the Upper Canada District School Board, with responsibilities that included Adult, Continuing and Alternative Education.