What are the most important considerations when thinking of a school technology plan for the next 5 years?

Philosophical standpoint: Instruction is always the focus, not the technology. Technology is just the vehicle to enhance instruction.

Here are some dreams:
Computers: An unencumbered lab per grade level and 4 or 5 computers per classroom. A complete lab is necessary for whole group instruction. Classrooms in elementary schools need multiple computers because of the focus on RTI, differentiated instruction, and small group instruction. One alternative to the lab per grade level suggestion while also considering space and finances would be to provide a class set of laptops per grade level. In some cases this may also help to occasionally meet the need of classroom computers.

Internet Access: We need a filtering system that will allow layered levels of access. Teachers need to have access to some sites that have educational value but that may not be appropriate for general access.

Professional Development: We are fortunate to have basic classroom technology resources. The real focus during the next 5 years needs to be on training teachers on how to effectively use their resources to enhance the curriculum.
  • A specific plan to provide opportunities to observe model technology-infused lessons (in person and through videos)
  • Designated time for collaborative planning for planning the use of technology in the curriculum.
  • A district wide focus on collaboration and sharing of instructional resources through the use of our new Instructional Resource database.
  • GBE added requirement for submission of at least 3 lessons per year to the Data Resource database.
  • TIS will continue to provide technology staff development sessions.
  • Lexington 1 should consider sponsoring a regional technology conference similar to Ed Tech at a time when all our teachers could attend. (Greenville is doing it this year.)

Additional Considerations:As the integration of technology increases there is going to be the need for additional considerations
  • Blog, Wiki, Podcast solutions for every school with in-district server space.
  • Ubiquitously accessible file space for both teachers and students. (Google Docs, Zoho, or similar type solution)
  • A school set of iPods could be used for supporting student learning and enhancing teacher staff development.
  • As elementary teachers become more comfortable with interactive whiteboards, additional tools such as wireless slates will give them the freedom to move about the room thus engaging more students.