Mark Hamilton will serve on the Governor’s Digital Learning Task Force.
The District 23 Republican representative from Cumming is one of 10 people on the panel, responsible for recommending ways to improve student achievement through digital learning environments.
“Any time the governor asks you to do something, it’s always very humbling,” Hamilton said. “Forsyth County has a lot to offer as we look at other communities, and I’m sure there are other communities that are doing things that can prove to be beneficial to Forsyth County.
“One of the things I look forward to doing is getting up to speed — not only on what Forsyth County is doing, but also what other counties are doing and also what some counties are not doing — to find out what the disparity is between the school districts that are using it well and those that have the most opportunity for growth.”
District 24 state Rep. Mike Dudgeon, a Republican from south Forsyth, was pleased to hear that Hamilton had been tapped for the committee.
“He joked that I was more qualified for this than he is,” said Dudgeon, a former Forsyth County school board member who works in the technology industry.
He went on to note that it was “really not a surprise that Mark got appointed.”
“He is from a county that does a great job with [education] and he’s got a lot of seniority and a lot of respect around the Capitol … he’ll do a great job,” Dudgeon said.
As a member of the panel, Hamilton will look into digital textbooks and the use of wireless mobile devices as part of the learning experience. Those are developments in which Forsyth County Schools has been at the forefront.
Hamilton is the lone House member on the group, which also includes a state senator and two school system superintendents. Also included are a district-level content specialist and business leaders who rely on a technically competent work force.
When creating the task force, Deal said students “need to develop technical literacy in order to attain 21st century skills and become competitive in the global marketplace, and our state will invest in that education.”
“We must increase the quality and quantity of our digital learning opportunities to ensure that our students are college or career ready.”
Hamilton said he would use Dudgeon as a resource and is eager to explore digital textbooks as a way to cut costs. “I look forward to serving on the task force that hopefully not only helps Forsyth County … but all students around the state.”