Wednesday, January 28, 2009

It is Not Okay

Today I stumbled upon a Fischbowl post from 2007 that caught my attention. Is It Okay To Be A Technologically Illiterate Teacher? I say in our flat world…NO!

So, as a leader of technology in my district, it makes me think about my role in all this. When a discussion came up at our district technology meeting about adopting the NETS Standards for Teachers, I balked. The district needs to commit the time and money to train its teachers, I argued. It wouldn't be fair otherwise. Most everyone agreed. Three years have passed and the issue has not resurfaced.

I also used to teach math, as the blogger noted about himself, and used to hear parents state matter-of-factly, "I'm not a math person." And now I even hear students say, "I'm not a computer person." How ridiculous are those statements! Can you imagine if I said that I'm not a writing person (even though some might agree with me)?

As chief negotiator for our district, I have been spending a lot of time on RIF language these days. 'Last one in, first one out' has been our guiding principle. It does seem like the fair way to do it. But, the potential is there for one or more of our 'barges' to bump our 'speed boats' out of the way. I hope it doesn't come down to that. We obviously need the latter in order to win the race.

In today's world, it is not okay to be technologically illiterate. State-of-the-art computers in schools are not enough. Having an airplane in a backyard is of no use unless someone can pilot it. All of our teachers must embrace technology in education. Maybe it's time to revisit adopting those ISTE standards.


  1. You are absolutely correct. Soon people will be saying, "I'm not a thinker." The ease of using web 2.0 is amazing. After taking "teaching and Learning in a Netwroked Environment," makes me comfortable helping my teacher peers back at school.

    I, also, find it frustrating to hear schools adopt standards without nurturing them, if you will. I've found that mere adoption without the supports and training is merely paying lipservice to state mandates. Frustrating, again evidence of putting the needs of our students some place short of the forefront.

  2. You know what is funny? NYC (NY STATE), Standards include technology...but remember, we are the ones without computers of any kind!

    Of course they are out of compliance with IEP's as well. I have kids in my room that are on other teacher's rosters...but hey, that is another story, right? lol.

    Any ways, I would love to be able to share knowledge about the world of technology with my students...but NYC puts admin first. Huge salaries for them...nice big offices...all the latest gimmicks...but it's students...? Tough cookies, I guess.

  3. Your situation is hard to fathom. I can only imagine how frustrating it must be!