By now in this third installment of my commentary on Administrative Technology Standards, I hope I've expressed my point clearly: There's an awful lot of literature out their telling superintendents "what to do," but their is not very much actual help for superintendents to first "get it" before they "lead it," particularly regarding digital-age tools. The abstract nature of how digital-age tools enhance communication, collaboration, information aggregation, and professional learning is difficult to understand.
Ken Kay and his Partnership for 21st Century Skills (of which Wisconsin in a member) have recently realized that much of the progress that has to be made in moving schools into the 21st Century needs to begin with District-Level Leadership. They have started the EDLeader21 initiative to help superintendents:
- Gain access to established and well-vetted best practices to integrate the 4Cs - critical thinking, communication, collaboration and creativity - into education.
- Keep up to date with important news, insights, trends, case studies and practical advice about 21st century district initiatives.
- Network with and learn from like-minded education leaders across the country.
- Work with the nation's pre-eminent 21st century education experts
These "standards" look very similar to the ISTE standards for administrators. You will notice in their graphic below that the first "step" for district leaders to create a 21st Century School is to "Adapt Your Vision of 21st Century Outcomes and LEAD."
However, before we--superintendents "adapt [our] vision of 21st Century Outcomes," and before we can begin to complete the ISTE Administrative standards, and before we can meaningfully engage in the CoSN Action Steps, we--as superintendents--need to first "get it" before they can "lead it."
So, now what do we do? Any suggestions?