Much like the shifting landscape in K-12 educational technology, this year’s Technology Counts is changing to address the challenges of covering schools in the digital age.
The 2010 report does not issue state report cards or state policy reports. Instead, the report takes a more district- and school-level look at educational technology.
The decision to shift the focus of the report from a state to a district and school lens was made for two important reasons. To begin with, there is a shortage of state-level data about K-12 educational technology, making it virtually impossible to evaluate and compare states in a fair and thorough manner.
More importantly, though, this shift in focus is happening because of a realization that the real action in educational technology is at the district and school levels. This does not discount the important role that states play in helping schools build and sustain ed-tech programs. States have been, and remain, very important players in providing financial and policy support to improve the use of technology in schools, and Technology Counts will continue to chronicle major developments at the state level.
But changes in ed-tech use in schools are happening rapidly, often far ahead of state policymakers, as educators find more innovative ways to use technology for learning.
To capture some of those changes, the data section of this year’s report includes statistics on the growth of online curricula, opportunities for online coursetaking, use of multimedia digital content, online testing, and school policies on cellphones, wikis, blogs, and various forms of social media.
We hope you find the data and the articles in Technology Counts 2010 useful. Looking ahead, please let us know how you think we can improve the report to better meet your needs.