The first quote is from Will Richardson:
Schools . . . have a responsibility to help kids lead transparent lives online in ways that prepare them for the highly complex relationships they will be having in these virtual spaces as adults. But to do that, schools have to get more transparent themselves.
The second quote comes from fellow ADE '09, Scott Elias:
Of the 52 ADEs that were selected this year, there are teachers, school technology coordinators, college professors, and district-level tech folks. But as far as I can tell, I’m the only school administrator. What’s up with that?
We’ve got amazing teachers doing great things in the classroom and we’ve got district people with good intentions. . . .
Building administrators are the vital link in this chain. How can we get more of them thinking about change? How can we expect our teachers to think ahead if so few administrators do?
It is one thing to read about ed tech, cheerlead and cajole. But how many school leaders are willing to change their own habits and and model their new habits for their staffs? Do administrators use Web tools to communicate? Do they network with other educators through Nings? Do they blog? Do they Tweet? If they don't, then regardless of their best intentions, how can they truly lead their staffs to do these same things?
Changing the culture of a school is necessary to truly take advantage of the read and write Web. It's easier to buy the equipment and furniture than it is to change the culture of a school. But teachers pumping PowerPoint through data projectors and students taking notes on laptops is not change. Such change will only occur if the adults, and particularly those at the top, exemplify a zest for learning about and engaging with the new powerful tools which are radically changing the ways people learn and communicate.
"transparency" Flickr Creative Commons photo by sleepingbear