Magazine article Technology & Learning

Challenge the Status Quo

Magazine article Technology & Learning

Challenge the Status Quo

Article excerpt

A bout two weeks ago, I saw the Blog Quote of the Day from Patricia Haughney, stating, "I try to avoid teacher bashing. They're overburdened. ... ... We have to give teachers more credit and respect everyone's expertise. Let's honor each other."

It was the end of a long day, when I had already had to sit through several meetings where a variety of people were trying to get the district to spend more money to add staff, buy more of something, etc. Most of the requests were legitimate and if the money were readily available, I would love to have granted them. However, the money isn't there. Unfortunately, I am not seeing an end to the economic plights for schools, at least in Illinois, for several years.

The local paper that same day had articles about teachers needing to pay more for health insurance and the plight of public pensions in Illinois. Ms. Haughney is correct. Simply blaming someone for our education problems won't solve them. Blaming hardworking teachers, principals, or even the IT staff won't help at all. It will continue to drive some of the best away and drive wedges between administrators, teachers, aides, IT staff, and other educators. We need positive ideas and programming. Let's leave the blame game to those sitting on the sidelines. Those of us in schools, working with children and teachers, need to be positive.

We need the audacity to develop new programs and delivery models. We will occasionally fail at this. I understand that is extremely difficult when we are educating children, but we do need to move forward in bold ways.

I remember a time when 1:1 computing was an incredibly audacious idea that only the wealthiest of schools would have considered. Today, I think more people are realizing it will eventually reach every student and school, and quickly. We need to look back to history (a favorite pastime of mine) and embrace those people who made this nation great and accomplished the most; they were bold. …

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