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School Information Technology Discussion <[log in to unmask]> writes:
>The key of course is effective professional development; something that
>many Supervisory Unions sorely lack.

Dave wrote of this in his last missive... I have been reading with great
interest the posts on this very relevant topic.  

It seems that in Vermont there are such varied job descriptions for any
technology related positions.  Technology Integration specialists may work
with teachers, do server work, and troubleshoot desktops.  Tech
coordinators may do any and all of those same tasks and also be required
to write policy, attend myriads of district meetings and manage the web
page.    Library/Media folks are often called upon to do those duties as
well.   

Not that I think there will ever be a standardization of those job
descriptions, nor do I really think there should .. it should fit the
needs of the school.  

I am interested in the concept of effective professional development for
all of these people and job descriptions.   What would this community need
for professional development?   What would bring people to an offering of
that professional development?  At Vermont Institutes, we planned out a
summer institute to try to get at some techie issues, some teaching and
learning work and bring the community together.. it didn't work out this
past summer, but we'd  like to try it again.. it would be really helpful
for the community to identify what would bring people to the table.  

Mark Arnold and I have also proposed, at Vermont Fest, a technology
educator community to help bring some quality pd to the folks that work
closely with teachers in this realm..  Tech integration specialists,
library media folks, tech coordinators involved in tech integration...  
Our proposal encompasses summer institute work with teachers and tech
integrators, a web based community built for sharing resources, units of
study, tech integration ideas per content areas, and  common concerns, as
well as the development of a pd series directly addressing needs the
community identifies.   

Our proposal seeks to bridge the teachers and technology people at
schools.  I know.. you've heard that before.. My vision of this proposal
is to bring in content teacher leaders to work with these integration
folks and really get at the integration of good teaching with technology. 
Perhaps technology integration folks would appreciate learning more about
curriculum mapping skills, or learn some techniques for utilizing
differentiated instruction in conjunction with technology tools. If there
is common language between all that are working in the classroom, we can
accomplish more... It is often that we hear about applying the technology
GE's but in doing so we get a cold shoulder from the teachers.. "something
else added to our plates"... is there a way we can do so that would bridge
the GE's with the content specific activities?  And if some have already
worked on that or developed it, can it be shared?

I would be interested in hearing more about the needs that the community
sees for itself.  This conversation is great..   

Peter Drescher
Technology Integration Specialist
Vermont Institutes
45 College St.
Montpelier, VT  05602
802-828-1381 (voice)
802-828-1327 (fax) 
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