RANDA Solutions’ podcast connects educators, builds exposure

Rod Berger, vice president of education at Brentwood-based Randa Solutions, knew after speaking regularly at state and national education conferences he wanted to help share ideas and trends in education and education technology.

Instead of writing, he decided to create aCore of Education podcast last year that has led to weekly interviews with education leaders and plans to moderate a panel of his former interviewees at the SXSWedu Conference & Festival in Austin next month.

“It’s about knowledge share,” Berger said, adding that his podcast creates a platform for people to share ideas about improving education. “People have these independent voices all around but you never get to see how they fit together. I try to put those together.”

Berger interviews teachers, principals and education leaders at all levels across the globe. For example, a podcast in December featured principal Stephen Harris from Sydney, Australia, whose school does not use traditional desks or classrooms. The Core of Education podcast has had 140 external sites link to the podcast and has attracted as many as 20,000 unique visitors for a single podcast.

Berger’s SXSW panel includes Audrey Watters , who writes the “Hack Education” blog, former Minister of Education for England Lord James Knight and U.S. Department of Education’s Education Technology Deputy Richard Culatta. The panel will focus on emerging education technology and the use of data in education.

While the podcast’s main purpose is to share ideas, it has also helped spread awareness of Randa Solutions, a software firm that manages data for teachers and school administrators, Berger said.

“If you are going to be a successful company in education technology, you need to understand all the aspects of education, the classroom, the board room that superintendents go through, what our national government goes through to put policies through and see that money is used appropriately,” he said. “I think connecting these stories is important.”

Jamie McGee covers tourism, entertainment and technology.

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