I didn't want anyone to think I was suggesting that teachers are better off without tech support. I just remember being very struck and surprised when I started at MMU, that a larger percentage of the Hazen staff seemed comfortable with technology; a school with a much smaller stff and far fewer resources than the staff at MMU. I don't know if that is true today. The staff at MMU as grown tremendously in their use of technology. The key of course is effective professional development; something that many Supervisory Unions sorely lack. Dave David Tisdell. Music Teacher Browns River Middle School [log in to unmask] (e-mail) >>> [log in to unmask] 11/10/05 7:34 PM >>> I'm not sure I've received all the pieces of this particular thread, but I get the idea that there is some feeling that teachers might be better off without being spoon fed their tech support by us techies. Mostly, I think I disagree with that. When it comes to teachers, I'm don't feel it's appropriate to ask them to become proficient (i.e. self-sufficient) in computer hardware support. That's the job my tech support group does. We don't expect the teachers to ask us to teach their classes and they don't expect us to ask them to fix their computers. I was once a classroom teacher and it's the toughest job I ever had in my life - and I've had several nasty ones. These people have their hands full trying to deliver an education to kids who are used to being amused and entertained from morning until night and are not about to cut their teachers an inch of slack. Today, it may be necessary for all educators to understand how to employ computers and other technical devices as tools in their classrooms and across their curriculum, but they needn't be able to fix the things. We need a certain set of skills to be able to drive our cars, but we don't need to know how to fix them. (Unless you're as poor as I was for the first twenty years of my adult life - basically, I went from fixing cars to fixing computers.) I doubt even the average NASCAR driver has any more than a rudimentary idea of the inner workings of the components that are hurtling him toward his death. Even when his tires need changing, someone else is there to do it for him so he can keep his mind focused on the race. (I'm making this assumption; I don't watch NASCAR races, nor can I understand why anyone would. ) If, like David Tisdell or me, you were inclined to fool with these devices (computers) anyway, and ultimately ended up being employed to keep them working, it may seem like a good thing that we were forced to confront them ourselves, but the average teacher is not so inclined and has better things to do with his or her time. The answer to us techies being overwhelmed is not overwhelming the teachers even more, it's convincing the folks holding the purse strings that we need more help - hired help. Competent hired help. On the other hand, I've likely misunderstood what everyone has been saying - but I'm too tired to go back and read all that email again. So, as usual, you can dismiss everything I've just said as the continued ravings of a man who is too old to make any sense and too poor to retire and get out of everyone's hair. :-) I remain, your humble servant, Vince >>> On 11/10/2005 at 5:12:39 pm, in message <[log in to unmask]>, [log in to unmask] wrote: > Joanne, > You brought up a question that I have thought long and hard about and I > think there is some truth there. > Years ago, I taught at Hazen and we had limited support which actually > helped me develop some good computer skills. In fact, I would say there were > at least five other people on staff with a skill set similar to mine at the > time I left to work in IT at MMU. One of those people became the full time IT > director for Hazen. When I arrived at MMU, there were some folks that had > some good application skills but none, that I was aware of, that had good > troubleshooting OS skills. They had had someone doing support for them for > quite a while before I arrived and they depended on her. I think any of my > colleagues that I mentioned from Hazen could have taken over the MMU position > when I did had they been so inclined. I would be curious to see if Dave > Mitchell (from Hazen) feels like the skill set of the staff has stayed staus > quo or dropped since he moved from the classroom into full time IT since > they have someone to count on to fix things when they break rather than doing > a lot of! > it themselves > Great question Joanne!!! > Dave. > > David Tisdell. Music Teacher > Browns River Middle School > [log in to unmask] (e-mail) > >>>> [log in to unmask] 11/10/05 1:49 PM >>> >>>> [log in to unmask] 11/10/2005 1:00 pm >>> > Is the opposite true as well? Does this mean that the schools with less > support are developing users with better problem-solving skills? More > risk-taking behavior because there are few alternatives? Are staff and > students in schools with more accessible support getting lazy? > >> > At the elementary schools I work in, I would say that no tech support > develop problem solving skills, but rather it makes them not want to use the > technology. > > Many teachers are willing to try something if there is someone there to bail > them out, but won't take the risk if they have to do it themselves. Over > time, with help, they begin to try more on their own. > > It also is dependent on the person. Some people are more willing to take > risks, some not, some have more demanding classes so don't want to deal with > the technology not working while the kids are climbing the walls. A second > person in the room with them is reassurance. > > Joanne > > Joanne Finnegan, Technology Coordinator > Richmond and Jericho Elementary Schools > (802) 434-2461 > (802) 899-2272 > > > This e-mail may contain information protected under the Family Educational > Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). If this e-mail contains student information > and you are not entitled to access such information under FERPA, please > notify the sender. Federal regulations require that you destroy this e-mail > without reviewing it and you may not forward it to anyone. > > > This e-mail may contain information protected under the Family Educational > Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). If this e-mail contains student information > and you are not entitled to access such information under FERPA, please > notify the sender. Federal regulations require that you destroy this e-mail > without reviewing it and you may not forward it to anyone. -- Vince Rossano Information Technology Director Montpelier Public Schools Montpelier, VT 05602 (802) 225-8690 This e-mail may contain information protected under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). If this e-mail contains student information and you are not entitled to access such information under FERPA, please notify the sender. Federal regulations require that you destroy this e-mail without reviewing it and you may not forward it to anyone.