Technology use planning is essentially the tool to help guide a team of educators and other stakeholders, in the right direction; to use this technology to its full potential in education as well as in our daily lives. If planned properly, these new technologies should ultimately enhance and improve the quality of learning. In order to promote critical thinking and problem solving in students, teachers need to develop better ways of improving instruction strategies, productivity and assessment. Our students need to be prepared to enter this fast-paced technological world, in order to compete in the job market. Planning is key. It is the concerted effort of teachers, administrators and technology experts, which can develop the pathways that will lead our students in that direction as we continue through the twenty first century.
The National Education Technology Plan 2010 is a great tool that can be used as a template or guideline to assist in the success of technology and its vision with today’s educational system. Its resources are vast and can contribute to every aspect in the implementation of technology within schools. It is the current resource created by the federal government in order to provide a set of standards which schools across the nation are expected to follow. In the letter from the secretary, it mentions one goal that reflects my philosophy: use technology for learning to “motivate, and inspire all students to achieve, regardless of background, languages, or disabilities.”
In Dr. See’s article, Developing Effective Technology Plans written for the National Center for Technology Planning, he states that technology planning needs to be short-term, not long term. I definitely agree with his ideals. Our technology is constantly changing. By the time school districts purchase and implement certain types of software or even hardware, due to time and budget constraints, the technology can be outdated within no time. A good example is the Apple Macintosh G4 Cube.
Dr. See also emphasizes that effective technology plans should be based on applications rather than technology itself. Again, I agree. We should be focused on the output, “what the students will be able to do,” as a result of the application, rather than the input, referring to the computer itself. Dr. See presents an excellent argument in this case. It’s not about what the student consumes but rather what the student can create, as we’ve learned previously.
In 1999, I was hired to teach at a new school. I had one of the only digital imaging programs within our school district, and my principal gave me a six-figure budget to start the program. New technology was evolving right before the new millennium and the district’s technology department had only been trained in IBM platform. My computer of choice was Apple Macintosh. Inevitably, the district gave me administration rights and I was left alone to fend for myself for eight years. The district made poor decisions with regard to the type of platform, and expected all teachers and staff to comply. Because of this, the few teachers who were using Macintosh computers were poorly serviced and/or ignored. My experience and knowledge was based only on this type of computer system. When computer issues arose, I was called in to trouble-shoot and to give my opinion. Continued popularity of Macintosh technology became overwhelming. The district was eventually forced to accept and train their techs accordingly. As of 2008, our school district was fifty-fifty with both platforms.
National Education Technology Plan 2010 | U.S. Department of Education. (n.d.). Retrieved April 15, 2012, from http://www.ed.gov/technology/netp-2010
National Center for Technology Planning. (n.d.). Retrieved April 15, 2012, from http://www.nctp.com/html/john see.cfm
5.4 Long-Range Planning
Long-Range Planning that focuses on the organization as a whole is strategic planning…. Long-Range is usually defined as a future period of about three to five years or longer. During strategic planning, managers are trying to decide in the present what must be done to ensure organizational success in the future (Certo et al, 1990, p.168).