School & District Management

States Seen Lagging on Innovation, Technology

November 10, 2009 1 min read
  • Save to favorites
  • Print

A report released yesterday gave most states Cs and Ds when it comes to educational innovation and technology, according to this story by my colleague Michele McNeil.

States are not reinventing education in ways that are necessary to tackle challenges of raising achievement and preparing students for the rigors of the workplace, the report concludes.

“The key to improving results will be to help schools not only to avoid mistakes, but to position themselves better to adopt imaginative solutions,” states the overview of the report, “Leaders and Laggards”. “In brief, for reform to take hold our states and schools must practice purposeful innovation.”

For the most part, however, they are not doing so, according to the report, commissioned by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the American Enterprise Institute, and the Center for American Progress.

The findings are based on state data, as well as existing and original research, according to the piece. Some of the research was conducted by the Editorial Projects in Education Research Center, which is affiliated with Education Week.

The report gives letter grades to states based on “seven indicators of innovation: school management, finance, hiring and evaluation of teachers, removal of ineffective teachers, data, “pipeline to postsecondary” (or high school quality), and technology.”

The report states:

Our school system...is archaic and broken, a relic of a time when high school graduates could expect to live prosperous lives, when steel and auto factories formed the backbone of the American economy, and when laptop computers and the Internet were the preserve of science fiction writers. And while the challenges are many--inflexible regulations, excessive bureaucracy, a dearth of fresh thinking--the bottom line is that most education institutions simply lack the tools, incentives, and opportunities to reinvent themselves in profoundly more effective ways.

When it comes to technology, the report laments that state data systems provide only limited information on what’s working in the nation’s classrooms. More professional development is needed as well, according to the report, to help teachers take full advantage of the tech tools that are available. Indeed, the report set out to gauge states’ return-on-investment in technology by looking at how it is used to “reduce costs, improve outcomes, or rethink education delivery,” but found little data to do so.

Educators often give little thought to how technology might modernize education delivery and thus improve teaching and learning. Schools, for example, frequently purchase computers without clear learning goals--and eventually let them languish at the back of classrooms. Education leaders also have not taken advantage of technology to improve the management of education and make schooling cheaper and more efficient.

Here’s an interactive map showing the technology results by state. There are similar maps for the other indicators as well.

In the end, states’ ratings in the technology category were based on data that was available, such as access to technology, use of computer-based assessments, online learning programs, and teachers’ proficiency with technology.

Related Tags:

A version of this news article first appeared in the Digital Education blog.


Commenting has been disabled on edweek.org effective Sept. 8. Please visit our FAQ section for more details. To get in touch with us visit our contact page, follow us on social media, or submit a Letter to the Editor.


Events

This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Teaching Webinar
6 Key Trends in Teaching and Learning
As we enter the third school year affected by the pandemic—and a return to the classroom for many—we come better prepared, but questions remain. How will the last year impact teaching and learning this school
Content provided by Instructure
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
School & District Management Webinar
Ensuring Continuity of Learning: How to Prepare for the Next Disruption
Across the country, K-12 schools and districts are, again, considering how to ensure effective continuity of learning in the face of emerging COVID variants, politicized debates, and more. Learn from Alexandria City Public Schools superintendent
Content provided by Class
Teaching Profession Live Online Discussion What Have We Learned From Teachers During the Pandemic?
University of California, Santa Cruz, researcher Lora Bartlett and her colleagues spent months studying how the pandemic affected classroom teachers. We will discuss the takeaways from her research not only for teachers, but also for

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Teacher Jobs
Search over ten thousand teaching jobs nationwide — elementary, middle, high school and more.
View Jobs
Principal Jobs
Find hundreds of jobs for principals, assistant principals, and other school leadership roles.
View Jobs
Administrator Jobs
Over a thousand district-level jobs: superintendents, directors, more.
View Jobs
Support Staff Jobs
Search thousands of jobs, from paraprofessionals to counselors and more.
View Jobs

Read Next

School & District Management Some Teachers Won't Get Vaccinated, Even With a Mandate. What Should Schools Do About It?
Vaccine requirements for teachers are gaining traction, but the logistics of upholding them are complicated.
9 min read
Illustration of a vaccine, medical equipment, a clock and a calendar with a date marked in red.
iStock/Getty
School & District Management A Vaccine for Kids Is Coming. 6 Tips for Administering the Shot in Your School
Start planning now, get help, and build enthusiasm. It's harder than it looks.
11 min read
Cole Rodriguez, a 15-year-old student at Topeka West, gets a COVID-19 vaccine Monday, Aug. 9, 2021 at Topeka High School's vaccine clinic.
Cole Rodriguez, a 15-year-old student, gets a COVID-19 vaccine at Topeka High School's vaccine clinic.
Evert Nelson/The Topeka Capital-Journal via AP
School & District Management Letter to the Editor School Mask Mandates: Pandemic, ‘Panicdemic,’ or Personal?
"A pandemic is based on facts. A 'panicdemic' is based on fears. Today, we have both," writes a professor.
1 min read
School & District Management How 'Vaccine Discrimination' Laws Make It Harder for Schools to Limit COVID Spread
In Montana and Ohio, the unvaccinated are a protected class, making it tough to track and contain outbreaks, school leaders say.
4 min read
Principal and District Superintendent Bonnie Lower takes the temperature of a student at Willow Creek School as the school reopened, Thursday, May 7, 2020, in Willow Creek, Mont.
Bonnie Lower, a principal and district superintendent in Willow Creek, Mont., checks the temperature of a student as Willow Creek School reopened for in-person instruction in the spring.
Ryan Berry/Bozeman Daily Chronicle via AP