Consider the following resources when embarking on the acquisition and implementation of digital instructional materials to support teaching and learning.


Across the Gears: Empowered, Innovative Leadership. Alliance for Excellent Education 2013. The Future Ready framework states that success within a district is dependent on innovative leadership at all levels. Leaders within a district must be empowered to explore innovation and they must believe in the district’s shared vision for deeper learning through effective uses of digital, 21st Century technologies.

Guide to Implementing Digital Learning. SETDA 2014. This free, web-based resource to support school and district leaders as they work to implement successful investments in digital learning. The guide includes six topic areas: Planning, Professional Learning, Content and Software, Broadband, Devices, and Tech Support.

ISTE Essential Conditions The International Society for Technology in Education provides 14 Essential Elements necessary to effectively leverage technology for learning.

K12 Educational Technology Landscape. Budgets, Purchasing, and Classroom Technology

Learning in a One-to-One Laptop Environment A new report by Dr. Binbin Zheng at Michigan State University reviews 65 journal articles and 31 doctoral dissertations published from January 2001 to May 2015 to examine the effect of one-to-one laptop programs on teaching and learning in K–12 schools. A meta-analysis of 10 studies examines the impact of laptop programs on students’ academic achievement, finding significantly positive average effect sizes in English, writing, mathematics, and science.

The Future Ready Framework. Alliance for Excellent Education 2013. The framework focuses on seven main areas: Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessment; Use of Time; Technology, Networks, and Hardware; Data and Privacy; Community, Partnerships; Professional Learning; and Budget and Resources.

Policy, Pilots and the Path to Competency-Based Education: A National Landscape A Survey of Current State Law and Policy on Competency-Based Education in K-12 Systems

Technology-Enabled Personalized Learning Summit The Friday Institute. The Summit Report incorporates suggestions from the conference of over 100 education leaders held at the Friday Institute at NC State University. The convening was unique in that the leaders included similar representation from industry, associations and nonprofits, and university and K-12 educators.

When Vision Isn’t Enough. Eric Sheninger (2015). This blog provides views on educational leadership, effective technology integration, best practices, and creating a student-centered learning culture.

Digital Instructional Materials

10 Elements of High-Quality Digital Learning. Digital Learning Now 2010. The Digital Learning CouncPrintil, a diverse group of more than 100 leaders in education, government, philanthropy, business, technology and members of policy think tanks led by Co Chairmen Governors Jeb Bush and Bob Wise. The group developed a comprehensive framework of state-level policies and actions designed to advance integration of technology into K12 public education.

Clarifying the Ownership of Teacher-Created Digital Content SETDA 2014. This policy brief helps state and district education leaders thoughtfully evaluate and address teacher-created digital content in ways that promote high-quality teaching and learning.

Ensuring the Quality of Digital Content for Learning. SETDA 2015. This policy brief examines strategies for ensuring digital content quality, including exploration of the specific quality-control challenges and opportunities associated with open educational resources. The paper describes: digital content’s unique characteristics; traditional instructional materials quality review practices; and recommendations for ensuring digital content quality.

From Print to Digital: Guide to Quality Instructional Materials. This toolkit helps state leaders establish state level review processes and to provide guidance to their districts on the selection of quality instructional materials that are aligned to standards, address educational goals and are accessible for all students.

K-12 OER Collaborative. The K-12 Collaborative creates high-quality, comprehensive OER resources to support K-12 mathematics and English language arts. The K-12 Collaborative includes 12 states and several supporting organizations, including SETDA.

Navigating the Digital Shift: Mapping the Acquisition of Digital Instructional Materials. This research paper provides an analysis of state policy trends related to digital instructional materials, essential conditions for implementation, an update on the states’ progress towards SETDA’s Out of Print recommendations and highlights several next steps for consideration as leaders move to advance the learning experiences in the digital age.

OER Case Studies. SETDA 2015. This set of case studies demonstrates how the policies and practices at the state level have provided for the avenue of OER materials in New York, Utah, and Washington.organizations, including Learning Accelerator, CCSSO, Achieve, SETDA, and iNACOL.

Out of Print: Reimagining the K-12 Textbook in a Digital Age. SETDA 2013. This paper makes the case for how digital content can positively affect student learning and engagement, make accommodations for special learning needs, provide unbundled search and discovery, and provide support for personalized learning. It also provides profiles of four states – Indiana, Texas, Utah, and Virginia – and summarizes actions of policymakers from nearly half the states to encourage digital content.

State Digital Learning Exemplars. June 2015. Published jointly by SETDA and the Friday Institute, this national report highlights examples of states with policies in support of five key areas: innovating funding streams and policy; digital content; human capacity; network infrastructure; and data management and privacy. The report is a valuable resource for states looking for policies to replicate.

State Instructional Materials Review Association (SIMRA). The State Instructional Materials Review Association is committed to the process of thorough and ongoing review of curriculum materials, and provides documents to help reviewers, such as the Achieve OER and EQUIP rubrics.

7 Things You Should Know About Open Educational Resources. Educase Learning Initiative 2010.


Understanding Open Educational Resources: Next Steps for Research. Proceedings of a meeting convened on June 16-17, 2016, by the National Science Foundation (NSF), the U.S. Department of Education (ED), and the Institute for Museum and Library Services (IMLS) to consider research issues and questions regarding the creation, use, and sustainability of open educational resources.


The Accessibility of Learning Content for All Students, Including Students with Disabilities, Must Be Addressed in the Shift to Digital Instructional Materials. SETDA 2014. As states and districts shift from print to digital content, education leaders must proactively consider the accessibility of digital content for all students, including students with disabilities.  This issue brief provides recommendations for state and district policy regarding the development, use and distribution and sharing of digital tools to improve the learning experiences of all students.

National Center on Accessible Educational Materials (AEM) AEM are print- and technology-based educational materials, including printed and electronic textbooks and related core materials that are designed or converted in a way that makes them usable across the widest range of student variability regardless of format (print, digital, graphic, audio, video).When students have difficulty perceiving or using standard educational materials due to a disability, they may need accessible educational materials.

The Foundation of Online Learning for Students with Disabilities. The Center on Online Learning and Students with Disabilities July 2012.This publication examines the challenges of accommodations compliance with Federal law, statutory mandates for accessibility; Section 508 standards; and an industry-sanctioned sample voluntary product accessibility template.

Acquisition Policies

How can we help companies investing in this industry by streamlining procurement policies and helping them raise more capital? LEAD Commission 2015. The LEAD Commission provides an overview of some of the issues companies face when selling their products and services to states and school districts. The article also highlights current efforts in the field.

Improving Ed-Tech Purchasing, Digital Promise and Education Industry Association. The report identifies the key obstacles and potential solutions for the procurement of K12 digital instructional tools.

K12 Purchasing Renaissance Webinar Recording. Learn the current state of procurement, the ways an efficient connecting of buyers and sellers can be a game-changer in education, and what they can do now to take action.

Procurement Best Practices: Key Take-Aways on Procurement From 2014 Education Industry Association Summit. Education Industry Association 2014. Highlights of the 2014 Summit on Procurement.

Broadband, Devices, and Interoperability

State K-12 Broadband Leadership: Driving Connectivity and Access. This report highlights the powerful impact of state leadership in driving critical policy decisions at the national and state level to support broadband networks, bandwidth capacity and home access for low-income families. Educators, policy makers and the private sector will benefit from organized and accessible information regarding states’ broadband and wi-fi implementation for all 50 states, Guam and the Commonwealth of the Mariana Islands.

The Broadband Imperative II: Equitable Access for Learning. SETDA continues to advocate for increasing robust access both in and out of school to best prepare all students for college and careers. This 2016 report expands on earlier recommendations

The Broadband Imperative. SETDA 2012. SETDA has long recognized the importance of broadband in K-12 education. Given that bandwidth capacity determines which online content, eduPrintcational applications, and digital learning service students and educators can use effectively in the classroom, it is in the national interest to ensure a baseline broadband capacity in and throughout all schools.

Connecting to Learn: Promoting Digital Equity for America’s Hispanic Families

CoSN’s 2nd Annual E-rate and Infrastructure Survey. October 2014. Survey result from CoSN’s 2nd Annual E-rate and Infrastructure Survey (conducted in partnership with AASA and MDR) show gaps in US school districts’ broadband and technology infrastructure. The report identifies affordability and adequate funding as the most significant barriers to Internet connectivity.

CoSN Interoperability Standards. As the use of digital instructional tools increases, there are still gaps in the integration and interfaces among applications.

E-rate Modernization Resources. In 2015, SETDA and Common Sense Kids Action developed several resources to support state and local policymakers and digital leaders as they navigate the modernized E-rate program. The goal is to help state and local leaders achieve high-speed connectivity in their jurisdictions and to support the national goal of connecting every classroom and library in America to high-speed Internet by 2018.

E-rate Modernization: New Funding Options for Internal Connections (Wi-Fi). The FCC’s effort to connect all schools and libraries to high-speed broadband would be ineffective without addressing needed Internet improvements inside the schools and libraries themselves. Schools and libraries without local area networks capable of distributing the bandwidth being delivered to them are inefficient in both use of services and E-rate funds. In an effort to ensure effective and efficient use of bandwidth delivery down to the classroom and student level, the FCC made additional funds available to provide discounts on local area network infrastructure and related services.

E-rate Modernization: Special Construction – State Matching Grant Program Guidance. As with all aspects of the E-rate program, the new E-rate options are subject to strict competitive bidding requirements. Applicants must conduct fair, open, and competitive bidding processes and must select the most cost-effective option in order to receive E-rate funds. The price of eligible products and services must be the most heavily-weighted factor, but not necessarily the majority factor, considered in choosing equipment and services to bring broadband to and establish internal connections in schools and libraries.

SETDA Priorities. SETDA discusses interoperability issues in digital learning, specifically how applications and potentially valuable data, the systems we use to collect, manage, analyze, and report on that data are often disconnected and don’t work well together.

Budget and Funding

DQC Privacy, Security, and Confidentiality. (DQC 2015). DQC presents the states’ role and responsibility around data use in the privacy and confidentiality of students’ personally identifiable information.

Guide to Implementing Digital Learning Content and Software: Examining the Budget Implications of Digital Content. SETDA considers the budget implications of using digital content.

Project 24 Budget Gear. Alliance for Excellent Education. One of the seven gears supporting the digital learning transition that requires strategic short-term and long-term budgeting and leveraging of resources.