(sorry so long on some of the posts - I'm seeking therapy)... Vince suggested I work on my writing skills.
Joanne - if you wouldn't mind, could I post just your first paragraph and then the reply to the School-IT board? Several people responding today have said something similar or have questions about what the community is intended to do.
I am sort of a tech integration person ... long story follows. I've been out of the loop for the past few weeks.... and haven't been able to keep up with email and list servs. I noticed you are trying to form a group but haven't had time to see if it fits for me.
Joanne Finnegan, Technology Coordinator
Richmond and Jericho Elementary Schools
Hi Joanne, well the intent was to help collectively focus efforts of school personnel that are tasked with working directly with teachers to enhance educational practice with the supports of technology tools and resources. It is about those people thinking together in a more focused manner than what VITA-Learn, etc. is structured to do; about how can we work collaboratively on select initiatives that have broad application to greater success for all of our efforts. What tasks might we work on together or share the responsibility in or what larger tasks might we accomplish together rather than so often each of us working in isolation to reinvent the wheel.... does that help with what the intent is or how this might differ from other tech related agenda's? It is about empowering US; the tech-integration professionals to find greater success and greater support along the way. Maybe it will help us increase capacity and productivity? At the very least, it might provide those involved with some new professional friendships and access to an increased inventory of resources that are being generated through the work of members in the community. I hope we will be supported and that we can enrich this pool of effort and knowledge into significant products that represent exceptional resources to the schools we all are working to help enhance.
I really don't have all the answers pre-arranged for what is to happen within this community... I am of the belief that the strength of the community will be largely a result of the investment and empowerment of the members that seek to be involved. I'm just trying to help bring people together to a point where that might begin to evolve. It must be my coaching background that leads me to support the benefits of working together to accomplish great things. I also believe that educational systems are in need of supporting and encouraging the empowerment of the professional educators that are the heart of empowering students. It seems like it is a very important ingredient in inspiring either to strive for great success.
So to more directly answer :-) I guess we will see when the people interested come together to decide what would be meaningful common initiatives for the community to revolve around. There seems to be a large enough number of interested people responding that full community initiatives and maybe smaller intra-community initiatives will likely emerge as productive opportunities.
Next week I will send out the list of people that have asked to be involved and some initial comment/ideas on how we might start to move from being a list of people to a community of professionals and then together I hope we can move toward becoming a community of professionals with a set of common initiatives that return value to community members.
Please, anyone who has asked to be involved.... don't hesitate to make suggestions or offer things that I might include in comments/ideas I send out next week. One request ... many of you sent an explanation of your "model" of how technology integration is being approached in your district or school. I think this would be valuable to have from everyone. It would be a great thing to compile and provide as a reflection point. I think it would help to frame the context of initiatives we might try to undertake within the community. I am thinking that some sort of "member profile" that included this would be nice to put together. i am going to be working on a basic web portal layout that we can use and I would be glad to take on the task of catalogging such information for the community. I hope posting the structure of the web portal for the community might at least help start to provide some framework for the community.
Frank - don't forget to call me when you get back to help! And I am reminding you now that you offered.