Responsibility for asking the right questions

The American Association of School Administrators (AASA), the national organization for school superintendents, asked me to write a column for its monthly magazine, The School Administrator. That article is now available:

In the article, I recommended that superintendents ask some key leadership questions:

  • When and why do we use digital technology in our classrooms?
  • How does our usage of digital technologies align with our curricula and instructional goals?
  • How do we know whether technology is being used effectively in the classroom?
  • What positive results are we seeing from our use of digital instructional technologies?
  • What are the barriers to effective technology usage by students and teachers?
  • How can technology better facilitate student learning?

What would you add to the list?

3 Responses to “Responsibility for asking the right questions”

  1. Hi Scott,

    I look forward to reading your new column.

    I would certainly ask “How are our students being taught to be safe and ethical users of technology?”

    All the best,


  2. I think this is a great list – thank you!

    I would only suggest questions related to:

    How can technology allow you to extend learning opportunities, deepen meaning, engage children, or otherwise do something you cannot do today? (as opposed to doing the same thing we have always done).

    From a superintendent’s point of view, technology has an ability to empower others in the organization to improve practices that are (I think) embedded in your questions in the article, but might best stand out if overtly stated:

    How can technology help teachers be better practitioners of their (art? craft? profession?)

    My thought process is related to how technology (at least in our district) has allowed us to make better informed instructional decisions. We know so much more about our students and their capabilities today than we did yesterday. In fact, our teachers are outpacing our administration’s capacity to keep up with the demand. The realization that our teachers wanted to know more about our students before making decisions, and that we could not provide answers in a timely manner without the assistance of fairly sophisticated technology was uncomfortable for me as an administrator, but felt great to know that demand was what was pushing us rather than supply.

  3. Most don’t realize how monumental the 700 Mhz spectrum auction is (with the open access provision)… This will make the network firewalling they are investing thousands of dollars in a mute point …. when broadband internet is wireless, everywhere, and free/cheap & with the super powerful ultra-mobile devices that will spring up over the next few years cellphones will be the least of their worries if they are not talking about proper use (instead of firewalling) with their students!

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