**Editor’s note: This article first appeared in EdTech Focus on K-12.
“Is product x compatible with product y?”
^ It’s one of the most common inquiries in edtech evaluation and purchasing, and for good reason: At the end of the day, people just want to know their systems are going to work together, even if it’s not always clear what that means.
And yet, as the awareness and prioritization of interoperability continue to gain momentum, this most basic of compatibility questions just doesn’t feel good enough anymore. What we have here is a discussion in need of a little reframing…
**Editor’s note: This article previously appeared in eSchool News.
Personality tests are fun.
Some people derive valuable insights from them. Others simply use them to validate what they already know about themselves. Most just like to see which category they fall in so they can compare, contrast, and laugh about it with others.
That’s kind of the idea behind our latest experiment: The EdLeader Personality Test. We identified nine recognizable archetypes from various levels of school and district leadership based on years of observation, then came up with a way for you to find their closest match. The logic behind…
Educational leaders are kind of a big deal. They have the power to inspire large workforces, improve local economies, and mold the educational experience of entire generations. With enough time, the very best of them often become legends in the communities they serve.
But what happens when they leave? How can the next person be expected to follow in the footsteps of all that greatness? When every move you make is weighed and measured against your predecessor, do you even stand a chance?
Big shoes are hard to fill, but there is hope. …
In the summer of 2017, Advancing K12 unveiled the Future-Ready Teachers badge group, an opportunity for educators to add free credentials to their digital portfolios based on increasingly common classroom practices.
When we first launched this program, we invited instructional coaches, tech coaches, and administrators to use the group as a pre-built resource for their own internal initiatives. We also welcomed any self-motivated teachers who wanted to pursue these future-ready badges on their own. We collaborated with our friends at Badge List to raise awareness and make the experience as easy as possible for newcomers to the world of badging…
“You know what? We don’t have any major new initiatives planned this school year. And that’s ok with me.”
That comment, uttered by a district CTO at a conference I attended this spring, was one of the most eye-opening takeaways from a full-day panel discussion. In a world where change drives everything, it was a little surprising to hear a respected authority speak so confidently about his decision to stand pat.
As the conversation continued, one thing became clear: Innovation doesn’t always have to be the answer. Sometimes it’s ok to “just sustain.” Let’s talk about why.
When your relationship with a software provider starts to sour, is it worth the effort to work toward reconciliation, or is there something to be said for just breaking it off?
There’s usually a case to be made for both approaches. The ability to differentiate salvageable partnerships from those beyond repair can be a valuable skill for any district technology leader, as the wrong decision often leads to headaches, hassle, and wasted opportunity cost.
These three common scenarios can make or break an edtech bond, depending on how they’re handled.
Your district has likely partnered with this vendor for many…
Computational thinking: It’s a term you’ll be seeing a lot of in the years to come, but what does it really mean and why do we expect it to be emphasized in the next wave of elementary education initiatives?
The answer can be found in the ongoing crossover between STEM and other disciplines, or, more specifically, the vanishing boundaries between the two categories. Data literacy, algorithmic thinking, and — most importantly — adaptability are becoming baseline qualifications for even non-STEM jobs.
In the words of Kelvin Droegemeier, vice chairman of the National Science Board, “Millions of workers who aren’t typically…
Note: This is a personal post. Given the potentially polarizing subject matter, I want to avoid any confusion with our official blog at Advancing K12.
The research is clear: High school graduates enjoy more economic and social success than dropouts. Therefore, higher graduation rates will result in improved economic conditions for more students.
It sounds like a beautiful theory. In practice, it has become one of the most prolific non sequiturs in K-12 today.
**Editor’s note: This article was originally published on eSchool News. See that version here.
From interoperability to dashboards, data accessibility is one of the most prevalent topics in edtech circles these days. For superintendents, simply knowing what to look for can be a challenge.
Some of the more obvious metrics are commonplace on school report cards, websites, and budget presentations. These might look familiar:
Those are all important data points to some, but a treasure trove awaits just a little…
**Editor’s note: This article originally appeared in EdTech Review.
No edtech provider can “do everything.” A vendor’s choice between expanding a product’s feature set or making that same product more compatible with existing options is no longer as cut-and-dry as it may once have been. District decision makers have spoken — interoperability is the new differentiator.
But what does interoperability even mean these days? How does it differ based on its purpose? What are all these data standards we keep hearing about and what role do they play in this discussion? …
Managing editor @AdvancingK12. Digital & social media guy @Skyward_Inc. Champion of risk-taking leaders and positive cultures ⚔.