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Monticello High School Hosting Business Start Up Conference

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ALBEMARLE COUNTY, Va. (WVIR) -

A business start-up conference unlike any other in central Virginia is kicking off this weekend.  Teachers, students, and engineers are gathering at a high school in Albemarle County for the big event.

This weekend is all about bringing together people with different areas of expertise who have an interest in education innovation.

Teachers know what problems they see inside the classroom, and have ideas for how to fix them. Engineers know how to make and create new tools and so they, along with students, computer programmers, and entrepreneurs will spend the weekend at Monticello High School.

Friday through Sunday they'll pitch ideas including everything from apps and physical products like smartboard accessories, to new education models - ways of teaching different subjects and topics. By Sunday, the goal is to have a one complete idea laid out to pitch to potential buyers and investors.

"We think that the organic nature of the event, the convergence of those people in one place at one time will be a fascinating opportunity to see innovation rise," said Chad Ratliff of Albemarle County Public schools.

"We always talk about what is the pain that you're trying to really fix in whatever market you're focusing on so, is it something that's really a need out there," stated Scitent president Deb McMahon.

As a judge, McMahon will consider whether the idea can really fix a problem. She'll be on the panel reviewing ideas, and says even if a product doesn't come from the weekend, connecting these different people will be a step in the right direction.

One example of something they could discuss is assessment tools - how students' are tested, whether their current methods are working, and what they need to improve.

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