This year, TCEA is hosting its 40th annual convention. While a lot has changed over the years, one thing remains certain: You will have an abundance of content and thrills to take in.

Thousands of educators, from the novice to the advanced and tech loving, flock to the annual convention each year to gather new strategies for impacting change in teaching and learning. Teachers and instructional leaders learn from education experts and peers who showcase their best practices and journeys. Leaders from campus to district level gain valuable knowledge on policies and procedures to support successful technology integration. Here’s what’s new and exciting to enhance the 2020 experience.

Keynotes Worthy of a Texas-Sized Ballroom

Back by VERY popular demand, Gerry Brooks will close out the convention with a keynote presentation that will fill the room with belly laughs – and some take-home tips from a principal who is still in the trenches every day. This YouTube sensation takes your everyday education qualms and puts a spin on them to remind us just why being an educator is the best job in the world.

Sekou Andrews elevated his teacher voice outside of the classroom and has become a leader, and award-winning, storyteller using his innovative category of speaking called “Poetic Voice.” Sekou will set the foundation for the convention with a keynote that is expected to keep you on the edge of your seat.

These two join a roster of education trendsetters appearing at the convention this year.

New Registration Tiers

The majority of our attendees spend at least four days with us, many staying all five days of the event to capture all the experiences and gather as many resources as possible. We want to make the convention accessible for all educators and therefore we’ve added in an option for a one-day pass.  With this one-day registration, you will be able to take in the keynote and featured presenters, learn in the hundreds of presentations scheduled that day, visit the exhibit hall (if open on the day you select – be sure to visit the schedule), and take advantage of networking opportunities available that day.

With this registration, I encourage you to invite a peer to experience the convention for the first time. Whether it’s your principal who can’t be away from the campus for very long, an inspired board member ready to promote change, or your art teacher who’s diving into a new tech project, TCEA 2020 offers engaging content for all levels of tech enthusiast.

You Asked for It; We’re Making It Happen!

To make sure you don’t miss your morning Pumpkin Spice Latte fix, we’ve moved the closing keynote to the afternoon for you. Actually, we’ve moved it to the afternoon to accommodate the overwhelming request to offer more sessions on Friday morning. You can view the schedule overview to start making your travel plans. And stay tuned for the full list of all 1,100+ sessions and 450+ exhibiting companies that will be released soon.

Register Now and Secure Your Discounted Hotel Reservation

Registration is open now and, on September 12 at 9 a.m. Central, we will open the discounted hotel reservation link for you to secure your hotel room. Austin has many hotel options to choose from with varied amenities, options, and price points. We have secured a group of rooms at discounted rates at select hotels that are within walking distance or are on our provided shuttle route. Here are a few tips for making your reservations:

  1. Review the hotel list and decide where you want to stay. Pick a backup hotel just in case your first choice is full. Unfortunately, only in Minecraft can I create buildings to add more rooms. Here’s a list of the hotels offering discounted rates.
  2. You may make up to five reservations. If you are making multiple reservations, please make sure to place them under the names of the person(s) actually staying in the room to avoid changes later.
  3. Once registered, you can log into the Attendee Service Center to access the link to the Hotel Reservation Site. Note: the link will not be live until 9 a.m. If you are already on the page be sure to refresh at 9 a.m. I encourage you to register for the convention beforehand so you can go directly to the hotel reservations step as soon as it’s open. For your convenience, this link is also on your confirmation email.
  4. Have your credit card ready and be sure to read the terms ahead of time. Some hotels will hold the card as a guarantee and some will process the first night’s deposit at confirmation.

Tips from the Pros for Getting the Room You Want

Change your request – Some hotels will have limited bed types. For instance, they may not have a room with two beds for your query. If you’re flexible, change your search to see other options.

Discounted rates rock – The hotel you select may not have all the dates you need. For instance, if your search for a Sunday arrival and Friday departure is not available, try searching for Monday – Friday. It’s better to have the discounted rates for the majority of dates than no reservation at all. There is an option to be added to the wait list for the additional nights. Most of the time, the hotels are able to accommodate all wait list requests.

Want to learn more about the TCEA 2020 Convention & Exposition? Check out convention.tcea.org and follow TCEA on social media for news and updates as the event approaches. It will be the best learning experience of your life!

Photo: Sarah Shaffer