Ms. Aileen Owens - Director of Technology and Innovation

As Director of Technology and Innovation at South Fayette Township School District, Ms. Owens has worked to embed computational thinking, engineering and design problem-solving process into the K-12 curriculum and simultaneously into connected learning initiatives. 

Ms. Aileen Owens The intent of the model is to create a scaffolding of learning for computational thinking that moves from block-based to text-based code. Students K-2 begin learning concepts of computer programming with block-based code through Scratch, building upon their experiences at each grade level, moving from block-based to text-based code by seventh grade. In grades 3-5, using motors and sensors, students use Scratch to program their Lego robots to move. By fourth grade students study electrical circuitry through eTextile design, programming Arduino boards with ModKit to make LED lights blink, then sewing the circuit into t-shirts with conductible thread. All 7th graders make apps for their mobile devices with App Inventor and transition to text-based code using Processing Language, and in the future Objective-C, to program robots. In grades 6-8 students learn CAD and create prototypes of their inventions using 3D printing. Students 9-12 may take Java I, Java II, and AP Computer Science, and pursue more in-depth computer programming opportunities in connected-learning activities

Ms. Owens has received several awards and recognition for her work with our district.  In 2016, she was awarded the Withrow CTO Award by the Consortium for School Networking (CoSN).  In 2015, she was awarded the PAECT Chief Technology Officer Award by the Pennsylvania Association for Educational Communications. In 2014, she was honored by edSurge and Digital Promise with the DILA - Administrators Winners Choice Award.

Ms. Owens has already been invited as a presenter to speak at numerous technology conferences and symposiums hosted by the International Society for Technology in Education, Pennsylvania Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development, Three Rivers Educational Technology Conference, Digital Media and Learning Conference, and a Scratch Conference Sponsored by MIT Media Lab.

Prior to her with the South Fayette Township School District, Ms. Owens served as the Instructional Technology Coordinator for the Mt. Lebanon School District.  She’s also worked with Carlow University and the Quaker Valley School District.