Area women to lead seminar

Virtual Learning Academy Director Christy Kelley and Education and Outreach Specialist Teresa Silvestri, two representatives from the Jefferson County Educational Service Center, have been selected to serve as speakers on the topic of Online Tools for Technology Skills at the 58th-annual Ohio School Boards Association Capital Conference.

The conference will be held today through Wednesday at the Greater Columbus Convention Center in downtown Columbus.

Kelley and Silvestri are two of more than 500 educational leaders and experts who will participate as a speaker during the event. “Charged with integrating 21st century skills, teachers can use technology to nurture the creativity of their students,” says Silvestri.

VLA Director Christy Kelley added, “This is what our staff does best, we work in the online environment every day.”

The Jefferson County ESC Virtual Learning Academy is a cooperative, online educational delivery system. It offers 100 full year and semester courses for students in grades kindergarten through 12. Since the organization began in 2001, the VLA staff is continually expanding the courses with the latest Web 2.0 Learning Tools, officials said. With these additions and enhancements, VLA can provide 21st century skills to students, as well as meet the needs of student learners.

At least 10,000 people are expected to attend this year’s conference, which features more than 100 sessions of panel discussions, workshops, one-on-one assistance and nationally renowned speakers addressing a variety of educational issues.

Keynote presenters at the 2013 Capital Conference include Ohio native Wil Haygood, a prize-winning Washington Post staff writer whose article was the inspiration for the recently released feature film, “Lee Daniels’ The Butler;” Yong Zhao, internationally known scholar, author and speaker whose work focuses on the implications of globalization and technology on education; John Ratzenberger, nominated actor, entrepreneur and philanthropist, who is best known for playing the character Cliff Clavin on the sitcom “Cheers.”

For information on Jefferson County ESC, visit or e-mail or call (740) 283-3347.