Several months ago, I presented a session called "What Makes a ___ Teacher?" at the NCTIES conference in Raleigh, NC. During the presentation, we discussed the new Teacher Evaluation instrument created by McRel for the NC Department of Public Instruction. This instrument is aligned with 21st century skills (as outlined by the Partnership for 21st Century Skills) and includes the integration of technology. As teachers and administrators were trained on the new instrument, there was an outcry from many stating that they could not be held accountable for these skills if there was not a high level of technology readily available for use at their schools. There was also a wide scope of what schools considered to be Proficient to Distinguished. The goal of my session was to narrow that understanding and start a conversation that could be spread statewide.
The key to understanding what can and should be done with technology integration in schools is standards. ISTE updated the National Educational Technology Standards for students, teachers and administrators over the past several years. These standards were created and reviewed by educators from all over the country and include scenarios of how they look in schools (even includes my friend Cathy Evanoff and the work she does in Nags Head, NC). When our district was trained in the instrument and we looked at technology's role, I asked our administrators to consider whose standards they were using to measure their teachers- our school, district, or do we look at the bigger picture?
If we understand that issue, we then need to understand what is happening in a classroom. The success of technology integration relies on three things...
Are we using:
The Right Tools at the Right Time for the Right People?
I will be sharing my thoughts on this over the next few posts. I would love you to be part of a conversation that delves deep into how we help support teachers with this growing problem!