AUSTIN (KXAN) – Let the South By Southwest fanfare begin! SXSW EDU kicks off Monday. The four day festival at the Austin Convention Center attracts teachers, administrators and business leaders from around the world to learn new techniques for inside and outside the classroom.
This year 400 sessions, 1,000 speakers, film screenings and start-up competitions will take place.
Since the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School, school safety has been a big topic. The Sandy Hook Promise, which trains students and adults about the signs of gun violence, will hold a session Tuesday, March 6 at 11 a.m.
Former Austin Police Chief and current chief in Houston Art Acevado will lead a discussion about the need for more social-emotional learning inside the classroom starting as early as Pre-K, so kids can learn how to deal with complex emotions in a constructive manner in an effort to avoid violence in schools. That happens Tuesday, March 6 at 2 p.m. Emergency management planners will also hold a session on best practices for school safety.
That’s something organizers of the festival say AISD is leading the charge on. Three students and a teacher from the district will hold a session demonstrating how social-emotional learning works inside the classroom on Tuesday, March 6 at 12:30 p.m.
Start-ups will be in attendance demonstrating new technology and better ways to design a classroom around students of the future.
“We hope when they go back to the classroom they not only feel inspired and uplifted from their four days here in Austin but they also have some sort of tangible skills that they can bring back to the students they are working with,” says Greg Rosenbaum, SXSW EDU General Manager.
Tuesday, the SXSW EDU Learning Expo will be free and open to the public from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. There will be a career and college fair. Those who want to attend more sessions can purchase a “Walkup” badge for $545.