Teaching and Leading Philosopy


            My philosophy on the use of digital technologies in the classroom can be summed up with one idea: 1:1.  The idea of 1:1 technology is that every student should have their own personal educational assistive technology. I believe this should be the priority of all school districts because of the vast amount of benefits that this provides for not only the students but for the parents, teachers, and the administration. 
            One of the major benefits of having a 1:1 setup is that all students are on an equal playing field when it comes to technology accessibility.  Currently in most school systems who don’t have a 1:1 setup; faculty often have to deal with students who don’t have access to technology, have access to different types of technology, limited access to technology, and many varying degrees of technical difficulties and issues.  If all students have the exact same technology then the faculty’s expectations can be unified; for everyone is metaphorically on the same page.  On top of the unity that comes from a 1:1 setup; school districts that pursue a 1:1 setup also will help better prepare their students for the future.  In our society today we are becoming increasingly more and more technology integrated and it is the responsibility of the school system to help prepare these students to excel in this new technology integrated future.
            Now as a technology guru I understand that a 1:1 setup is a very large technical and financial undertaking and this setup isn’t able to be achieved by all districts.  With that in mind I believe that districts that don’t have the ability to achieve a 1:1 setup need to prioritize different aspects of technology use.  Since not all students will have a technology assistive device; the school and faculty can’t make the use of technology mandatory for students.  With that in mind I believe that in a school system like this, technology should be used as a form of enrichment rather than as a form of mandatory instruction.  For example a school that doesn’t provide 1:1 should not require students to be involved with a flipped classroom but the teacher could still provide videos for students who want to review at home. 
            My view on the formal role as a leader in technology focuses on the need to stay up to date with the latest trends in technology.  Technology is an ever moving and changing wave in the ocean of education and life.  It is not easy to stay on the cutting edge of technology but that is one of the main responsibilities of a true leader in technology.  Staying on top of technology can be achieved through seminars and technology classes; one way or the other teachers need to stay on the cutting edge.
            My view on the informal role as a leader in technology focuses on the ability to think of new and innovative ways to use technology in the classroom.  As I mentioned earlier a technology leader needs to stay up to date with the technology; but just staying up to date with the technology is not enough.  A true technology leader needs to be able to use the tools at their disposal in ways that are beneficial to the students.  Since the technology wave is ever moving and changing there is no cookie cutter approach to accomplishing this.  Therefore a technology leader needs to not be afraid to try new approaches and also experience setbacks and failures.  Building off of the idea of setbacks and failures; a good technology leader understands the strengths and limitations of technology.
One final note on my personal beliefs on the use of technology in the classroom is that technology is a wonderful tool but it is just that a tool.  Great teachers can never be replaced by technology but great teachers know how to use the tools at their disposal.