Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Administrative Technology Standards: The Essential Questions (Part 4)

After thinking about this extensively, the notion first of "getting it" (and when I say "gettting it" I mean being able to effectively use digital-age tools for the purpose of conceptualizing the digital age) before we can "do it" (and when I say "do it" I mean begin to fulfill administrative technology standards). 

Some of this comes from Michael Wesch, some from Scott McLeod, some from Clay Shirky, and after those experts, I'm not really sure where the rest of the ideas originate. But what follows are essential questions that capture what it means for us to "get it."

For us to "get it," we need to be able to first answer the following Essential Questions:
1. How does technology help schools and society tap human resources of talent, goodwill, and productivity?

2. How does embracing new media allow us to explore highly engaging but low cost opportunities?

3. In what ways does new media allow society to aggregate talent and effort, producing a dramatically different social, working, and learning environments?

4. To what extent has access to information significantly changed the landscape of learning, working, and socializing? To what extent have the boundless opportunities to produce information changed the landscape of learning, working, and socializing?

5. What responsibility to we have to students to help them prepare for “workplace 3.0”?

6. How does our limitless capability to communicate change our notions of collaboration, contribution, space and time, and authority?

7. To what extend does the media culture of re-tweeting, re-scripting, re-combining, cut and paste, embedding, sharing, and open source challenge or complement copyright, academic rights, plagiarism, publication credit, and permissions to reproduce materials?

8. How can we create an environment of inquiry (or of problem-based learning) that engages the learner and optimizes learning through technology?
9. How does the use of digital-age tools amplify other educational initiatives, such as RTI, reading literacy, differentiation, etc.?

To answer these questions, superintendents need to actively engage in activities that build the skills dispositions related to the effective use of digital-age tools. Thus, the actual effective use of digital-age tools will help superintendents begin to answer the essential questions above. So the solution to the dilemma of helping superintendents "get it" so they can then "lead it" is to teach them to use digital-age tools.

The funny thing about this entire four-part blog series is that Scott McLeod told us this almost two years ago in his podcast on how current leadership models will not adequately serve to lead and encourage reform. Also, McLeod's CASTLE program (I believe) is the only real opportunity for district administrators to learn how to use digital-age tools and how to "get it" so that they can then lead it.

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