First, I want to thank Scott for inviting me to the 1 to 1 Schools blog; honored to be part of this!
I’m working with a few colleagues to help a school planning 1 to 1 — and also thinking about school stakeholders. These stakeholders include board members, parents, students, teachers, administrators, taxpayers, and community members. How do you ensure that you have representation and buy-in from these constituents when you are considering something with the far-reaching impact and potential of 1 to 1? In my book, an umbrella “Vision Committee” is described. The source of this approach is a number of successful initiatives including the State of Maine’s program lead by visionary Bette Manchester.
Assembling a Vision Committee/Team combines art and science, left and right brain, yin and yang, dreamers and doers. It requires a mix of interests and agendas along with adherence to overall goals. You don’t want to leave out any constituent groups – but you want to be sure everyone knows and buys in to the team’s purpose. Stakeholders have to feel they are contributing and being heard, and the team has to form, storm, norm and perform. Given the proper ingredients, this team can produce the most aromatic and delicious stew. But without a chef stirring and simmering correctly, a stew can stick along the way and even turn into something unpalatable. The School Leader who empowers and helps balance the Vision Committee will be the Iron Chef for 1 to 1.