ICYMI: Free AI resources for your school district

A picture of Doug Hartley instructing students on the computer.MEA member Doug Hartley completed his student teaching and teacher certification amid COVID. Today at 27, in his second year teaching computer science in Utica, a second global upheaval has begun that will affect the rest of his career: the rise of generative artificial intelligence.

A colleague of Hartley’s at the opposite end of her career in Utica, 30-year special education teacher Kecia Waddell demonstrates AI’s great promise as part of a cover package of stories on possibilities and challenges in the technology.

Meanwhile, a comprehensive free planning guide for AI has been released by the 25-year-old nonprofit Michigan Virtual, a platform already used by many school districts for student credit recovery and staff professional development. Find the guide at michiganvirtual.org/ai.

Developed with numerous education partners, including the Michigan Department of Education, the Michigan Virtual framework lays out considerations for maximizing benefits and minimizing risks.

Stay tuned to MEA and NEA for ongoing information, SCECH-eligible trainings, and discussions around what’s being called the Fourth Industrial Revolution and the new Age of Artificial Intelligence.

“Having a computer with the ability to do cognitive thinking that humans do is a very powerful tool,” Hartley said. “It’s still in its infancy, and we don’t know how it will affect the future. Will it change the way we work and live? The answer is unclear but exciting.”


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