One indicator of Visionary Leadership is:
d. Implement strategies for initiating and sustaining technology innovations and manage the change process in schools and classrooms.
To facilitate a change towards use of technology for Deeper Learning, my Director and I decided to introduce some common language and thinking around technology use to teachers and staff. The language we introduced was the SAMR model. This was spurred by an activity at the Future Ready conference that I arranged for a team from my district to attend. I reflected on the frameworks introduced in my, Fostering a Future Ready District, blog post. My team chose to start with SAMR because of its face-value acronym simplicity and deeper level entry point for discussions around deep learning. I first shared the SAMR concept at our Technology meeting and some in-person sessions. Because interest in online Technology courses is strong in my district, I created an online SAMR course in December 2016. By putting the course in a format many teachers would take advantage of, my intention was to initiate common language and thinking around integration with all grade level teachers.
Sample online discussion between by teachers in the SAMR #1 course.
The SAMR #1 course was well received. Because of that, I created a SAMR #2 online course in January 2017. The SAMR #2 focuses on application and rides on the tail feathers of other instructional changes processes. In my blog post, A Nice Merge, I focus on aligning technology initiatives with the district’s instructional teacher frameworks so teachers see technology integration as a way to enhance what they are already expected to do and not as “one more thing.” This strategy should promote sustainability.
All teachers created a SAMR analogy. Credit: high school Floral Design teacher.
Wifi access for families that cannot afford access is a project I worked on during the spring 2017. This directly relates to my district’s high school 1:1 vision. To investigate funding strategies I investigated and exchanged some correspondence with some grant programs. I also attended a joint phone conference at Auburn School District with TMobile. Based on that conversation, my district obtained a cell phone from TMobile to check coverage in the remote parts of our district’s boundary. Based on this work, the coverage and cost of $10 a month per access point for 2 GB of data looked financially feasible for our district to pilot. The May 2017 pilot of 13 Hotspots with families is underway. This is important because teachers will change there instruction and expectations with all students having access to a device. Having some students without wifi would inhibit some student’s ability to be technology innovators.
Collaboratively planning our wifi coverage route on the district boundary map.