Leaders use technology to increase equity, inclusion, and digital citizenship practices. Education leaders:
1a. Ensure all students have skilled teachers who actively use
technology to meet student learning needs.
1b. Ensure all students have access to the technology and
connectivity necessary to participate in authentic and engaging
1c. Model digital citizenship by critically evaluating online resources,
engaging in civil discourse online and using digital tools
to contribute to positive social change.
1d. Cultivate responsible online behavior, including
the safe, ethical and legal use of technology.
In GDIT 715 my group designed a model for “training-the-trainer” on the use of Kurzweil 3000, an assistive technology that layers on top of existing software to help curate an inclusive learning experience for students who have dyslexia or other language-based learning differences. This assignment was pulled from my work at The Siena School, where I was the Director of Technology. The Siena School, in Silver Springs, Maryland focused on students with language-based learning differences exclusively and every student and teacher had Kurweil 3000 installed on their school-issued laptop. New faculty underwent similar training sessions at the beginning of the year, before teaching new students how to use the software.
Group work has always been challenging. Our group came from various backgrounds (public school versus private, etc.) but ultimately those differences in perspective and experience served to create a fairly robust training artifact. My expertise in the software complemented Susan’s expertise in training preservice teachers. One of the first observations I made was there are significantly more structure and scaffolding in her environment that was needed when compared to my private school environment. For example, the decision to create pretests and posttests to assess learning would never be received well by my faculty. They want the training to be concise, streamlined, and to be given the option to come visit me for one on one sessions if they need it. One model is not better over the other, in my opinion. I think in both cases, faculty have a tendency to be inundated at the beginning of school that most of the content in these types of training sessions get lost in the noise of the start of school. This exercise, however, did serve to jump-start my own creation of training material for software systems my faculty would need to use throughout the year. It also introduced me to the concept of developing for multimodal learning styles . This has served me well most recently as I develop in-person and virtual training for equipment in my makerspace.
Final Project talking points for GDIT 715
Students at Greens Farms Academy participated in a 1:1 Laptop program starting in 2013. We settled on MacBooks as approximately 95% of the student population already had a MacBook of some model. In order to create a consistent and equitable environment of technology we provided all faculty and financial aid students with Macbooks. Faculty (who moved from room to room) had the ability of connecting to classroom technology with minimal disruption as each classroom was outfitted with the same A/V equipment.
Excerpt of the Source stating GFA’s technology policy
Faculty Use Agreement
Financial Aid Laptop Loan Agreement
Every year at Greens Farms Academy the Lower School Technology Coordinator and I held a series of informational sessions for our lower school parents. These sessions range in topics but their main focus is to evaluate online resources and trends in technology amongst the lower school students. After the presentation we hold an open forum for the parents and encourage questions and conversation. The last session we hosted before I left GFA was an informational session on the game Fortnite so parents were aware that it was gaining in popularity in the lower school, the suggested age of the game and to caution them regarding the ability to chat via voice in-game. The power point we used as a framework for our discussion is below.
PowerPoint on Fortnite for Lower School Parent Connection
In GDIT 514 we crafted an Acceptable Use Policy that focused on the rules that the school student and faculty community would follow to ensure a safe, ethical and legal use of the technological resources available to them. I used this resource to craft an AUP that I implemented at the Linsly School in Wheeling, WV while I was the Director of Technology there. In my next role as the Director of Information Services at Greens Farms Academy, I modified the AUP into a RUP, focusing more on expected, responsible behavior and not a list of rules that students and faculty should follow. While similar in content and structure it differed in presentation, suggesting that behaving safely, ethically and legally was indeed the responsible thing to do and was mission-aligned.