Sparking some school board discussion

Apparently I sparked a little discussion by a local school board! You’ve got to give them credit for asking the right questions and also being willing to experiment publicly with what to them were new technologies…

5 Responses to “Sparking some school board discussion”

  1. After reading the story, my first thought was now they know how teachers feel when they are given new tech or programs and expected to use them when they have been given the proper training.

    If one of our school board members tried to use our gradebook program, they would frustrate out in 10 minutes. I would enjoy it, though.

  2. Hey Scott,

    What I found to be the most interesting in the article was that your school board members didn’t seem to value—or to know how to take advantage of—technology as a tool to facilitate their own work! Not only had their laptops sat unused—there didn’t really seem to be a sense of urgency to figure out how they could be used.

    That’s what worries me the most about educational technology—-All too often, those who are in the position to make decisions about how dollars are spent or how instruction should change have no real understanding of how digital tools can be used to facilitate the work of groups or the learning of individuals.

    This lack of understanding just seems to doom any kind of meaningful change at all in schools!

    How can we expect to see pushes towards opportunities for creation, communication, and collaboration in our classrooms that are facilitated by digital tools when those who make decisions about what happens in classrooms haven’t had their own working or learning patterns changed by technology themselves?

    The silver lining in this bit—that they’ve got your mind and your university working on the review!

    Here’s to hoping that you have the patience to nudge them towards real, meaningful change.

    Rock on,

  3. @wmchamberlain: Well said!

    @Bill: I often say that “The people who have the responsibility to lead organizations into the 21st century (i.e., principals, superintendents, board members and, arguably, policymakers) often are the least knowledgeable about the 21st century.” [sigh] You’re right. This makes it extremely difficult.

  4. I agree that the biggest steps are to be made the higher up the responsibility chain we go. The slowest are the board, followed by administration then teachers, and led by students. As an administrator, I feel that inequity of balance and want to do something about it. Mostly we seem stuck in the daily situation that prevents us from leaving our comfort zones. Glad that at least there is some talk and effort to do so. Waukee took a big risk in some ways doing this publicly, but that risk is what we need or we just sit back with unused technology at our fingertips.

  5. What’s Policy Got To Do With It?

    My years in the classroom have shown and brain research has validated that the best learning happens when someone experiences a phenomenon rather than reading about it in a textbook or listening to a lecture–no matter the age of the

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