“blog about whatever you like related to effective school technology leadership: successes, challenges, reflections, needs, wants, resources, ideas, etc.”
As I was contemplating my topic, my initial instinct was to write a post critical of most leaders in relation to how they deal with technology issues. In my work with schools, I’ve observed that inadequate leadership around technology issues is the top barrier to successful technology integration. However, I decided to spin this post a bit differently because there are also administrators who are doing a good job in this arena. The remainder of this posts highlights those things that I’ve observed these lead administrators doing, and things I think an effective leaders should do.
An effective school leader…
1) Actively serves on a committee to formulate a school vision, and CLEARLY understands and can articulate how technology is part of that vision.
2) Models the use of technology to:
communicate with parents, teachers, students and the community.
find information to become a better informed leader.
share information with other educators in the district.
create a personal learning network outside of the school walls.
3) Provides resources that allow teachers to increase their skills. Those resources could include:
time for teachers to observe other classes.
meaningful in-house professional development.
differentiated professional development by content as well as skill level.
learning opportunities outside the school for select teachers.
4) Gives feedback to teachers about their use of technology. This isn’t solely formal evaluations, but frequent walk-through feedback and informal conversations with teachers.
5) Doesn’t pass off all technology related decisions to someone else in the school who happens to have the word “technology” in their title!
The effective leader around technology issues does not need to be an all knowing technology guru. However, they do need to be an active participant when dealing with the powerful tools we define as technology. This no longer can be an extra add-on to the job, but rather an essential component of successful leadership!