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Education Opinion

5 Ways to Improve Your District’s Digital Leadership

By Matthew Lynch — October 18, 2017 2 min read

Educators are counting on your digital leadership and your support to help everyone embrace edtech. Here are five ways you can help them embrace digital technology.

1. Recognize Concerns

Change doesn’t come easy for everyone, especially in the digital technology space. Educators stress about their ability to fully implement technology in the classroom and their workspace - even after decades of classroom technology. Nine out of ten teachers will agree that ed tech is here to stay, and yet only 40% of teachers report being prepared to implement it competently and confidently.

Worries about digital footprints, security, and privacy, or something else, can slow the adoption process unless you intervene.

2. Walk the Talk

Get your human resources department to help you set the expectations for digital leadership. Write job descriptions that require the use of current technologies.

Next, provide professional development to make sure that employees have the digital skills you need, and then evaluate every employee on how well they have met the digital expectations of their job descriptions.

3. Celebrate the Early Adopters

Teachers and administrators who are fearless in embracing new trends often lead their peers. Identify these influencers right away, celebrate their successes, and place them in a position of digital leadership.

Early adopters of new technologies can lead their peers in the right direction; these leaders often make excellent technology coaches.

4. Allow Time for Transition

Learning new ways to incorporate digital technology in your district takes time. Just as students learn at varying rates, your district employees will learn at different rates as well. Teachers, for example, need opportunities to thoughtfully engage with the technologies used for instruction, communication, and collaboration.

5. Create a Culture Based on Change

Adding digital technology to an already full plate for district employees doesn’t create change; it foments resentment because it comes across as one more thing to do. Instead, encourage a real metamorphosis of your culture. Changing the culture of your organization allows you to change the way everyone thinks and works collaborates. Technology allows educators to create a synergy that doesn’t exist within the isolated classroom.

By setting edtech expectations early on and providing adequate support, your district’s digital leadership can create a new culture of digital use and citizenship.

The opinions expressed in Education Futures: Emerging Trends in K-12 are strictly those of the author(s) and do not reflect the opinions or endorsement of Editorial Projects in Education, or any of its publications.