A little learning is a dangerous thing
- Alexander Pope
I start the first new job I've had in 23 years on Monday. While my title of Technology Director will not change, nearly everything else will. I will have a new staff, a new boss, a new office, and new job priorities. I will need to learn the location of over 15 school buildings and the names of over 30 administrators. Budgeting processes, communications, and decision-making groups will all need decoding. Sacred cows will need discovering.
There will be a great deal I must come up to speed on very, very rapidly.
As these details come at me hard and fast, I'll be using a system of categorizing technology tasks in schools that has served me well since I started doing technology planning: the Mankato Hierarchy of Technology Needs. It fits my brain and world-view. YMMV.
- Established Infrastructure The district will have a reliable, adequate, cost-effective, and secure technology infrastructure that supports the learning, teaching, and administrative goals of the district.
- Effective Administration The district will use technology to improve its administrative effectiveness through efficient business practices, communication, planning and record keeping.
- Extensive Resources Technology will be used to provide the most current, accurate and extensive information resources and tools possible to all learners in the district and community in a cost effective and reliable manner at maximum convenience to the user.
- Enhanced Teaching All district teachers will have the technology training, skills and resources needed to assure students will meet local and state learning objectives and have the technological means to assess and record student progress.
- Empowered Learners All students will demonstrate the mastered use of technology to access, process, organize, communicate and evaluate information in order to answer questions and solve problems and practice safe and ethical technology use.
Whether so categorized or not, technology serves the same purposes in all schools. The details and differences betwen my old job and new will fall into place if I can so identify them. If I have a place to put them.
Oh, besides my title, I know one other thing that will not change - my professional mission. I will be working every day to empower kids with the skillful use of information and technology.