Posted on March 09, 2023 in response to JennyS In response to JennyS
Thanks for this thought-provoking post, Jenny.
I've been in both the classroom as a teacher and in the server-room as IT and in my personal experience I've found that world's begin to merge when IT members are viewed as educators and partnered with as collaborators. I know this takes a mindset shift on both sides, but here's what I mean:
Oftentimes IT makes decisions in a vacuum, so invite them to faculty and departmental meetings where they can hear the learning goals and real-world challenges that impact the district/school. Invite members regularly to sit-in, observe, even participate (!) in a class. Depending on the size of the IT staff, I'd encourage the staff to "buddy" with a set of teachers and encourage them to check-in with them regularly.
In my personal experience I've found that IT members begin talking like educators; and as an added bonus educators begin talking like IT. You'll overhear both groups talking about MDM, simplified workflows, removing distractions, great learning, and classroom management.
Just like tech itself, my job with tech has grown and changed. Even a few months ago, I’d say it would be to work with teachers in their classrooms utilizing technology in purposeful ways. Yes, I still get to do that from time to time, but this past year especially, I’ve moved more behind the scenes. I’ve gotten to see and learn more about how it all works. I’ve gotten to troubleshoot in different ways. I’m finding myself enjoying this. I like supporting teachers by making things work for them. I like translating between IT and teachers and getting everyone on the same page as we’re all on the same team.
I would love to be able to help bring teaching and learning and technology together. I would love to help support teachers guide their students into using technology in meaningful, responsible and impactful ways that carry on as they go into the world.
To do this, I need to continue my exploration of how my two worlds have come together. Through that, I can help get both sides on the same page and I can really help teachers see the powerful ally they have in front of them, bringing them onboard. Then I can become the partner I want to be with them.
I’m curious what others stories are that have experienced this. Where did you start and how did you blend that more with Management and Deployment? Any tips on getting your voice heard on the IT side? I have a good relationship with them, and could never do all they do, but feel that I could really support them in understanding the needs of teachers/the classroom.