Hello all,

 

I have been charged with bringing back to life our once defunct Technology Committee. One of the first tasks of our members will be to "take the temperature" of each building in regards to technology.  We don't wish to give a "survey" with many questions, that was done last year, but didn't give us very good data.

 

What would you suggest as "core" questions that could be asked during staff or grade level meetings to get a general feel of where we are and where we need to go as far as making technology easily accessible for all?  Thank you for any feedback you can offer...

 

Stu

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Maybe do it like a business who cares about their customer's needs. Just ask "How can I help you?"

The answers will likely differ according to need, but you might see similarities and patterns.
Be prepared for venting of frustrations if people have had unresolved issues.

Do they need equipment ?
Do they need equipment repaired?
Do they need printers ?
Do they need to dispose of equipment ?
Do they need someone to teach them how to use some aspect of technology?
Do they need help integrating technology into the curriculum?
Do they need or want professional development in technology areas ?
Do they even know what they need and what is available?

As a technology committee, you should't just be reactive asking them what they want, you should be pro-active and give them ideas as to what is current and what can help them. You might want to take an inventory class by class and find out what your equipment status is. Maybe computers in the classrooms aren't the way to go, maybe elmos, document readers, teacher laptops and projectors are needed. Maybe new math software. etc....
Stu,
What a challenge! Steve had some great questions to begin the discussion. Once you finish asking those questions, unfortunately many more questions will surface. However, I encourage you to conclude your meeting with this one little important question:

How can you (teachers, site administrator) help the technology committee (me) serve you and the students?

The more I think about technology and see the challenges, I find that our focus is more about bringing technology to the classroom, as supposed to building relationships around the purpose of technology to the classroom.

As a staff, brainstorm the answers to that questions and you will not walk away with a list of "to-dos", but with a clear picture of the commitment of the staff to help your technology committee achieve their goal and define their purpose as it relates to the greater needs of the school.

By the way, what is the goal of your technology committee? Is it there to fix machines? Or is it an advocacy group to support technology and the purpose of technology in the school environment?

If you are the head person of this "defunct" group, I encourage you to begin with defining the group's purpose as it relates to the needs of the school and the community. You may find out that it is less about technology and more about the role of technology. I find that teachers need the latter more.

Stu, I can go on, but I wont. I hope my post is seen as a post of encouragement for you to lead this group. You have a great opportunity to define the vision of your school as it relates to the 21st student. Many technology groups parish because of lack of funds. However, strong technology groups thrive because of their commitment to the purpose of the group (kids). Find that purpose and find the right people who believe in that purpose. Because when the chips are down, funding is low, morale is even lower, it will be that purpose that will see you though.

Ok...now I am done ;-)

Your technology friend.
P.S. Keep me posted on your development! I want you and your school to succeed!

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