February 5, 2023

Futureality

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What Educators Need to Know About Tech Use in Schools

Educators’ and students’ use of educational technology has risen dramatically in recent years, fueled by remote and hybrid learning during the pandemic, technological advances, and the rising tech skills of today’s teachers.

And while nearly every educator has at least some experience with technology by now, there’s still a wide range of skills and beliefs about the role of technology in the classroom.

As technology use becomes more commonplace and sophisticated in classrooms, educators need to think about how to effectively harness it to benefit student learning, how to maintain and advance their skills, and how to ensure they can continue to pay for technology upgrades and replacements.

Here’s a collection of interviews with educators that Education Week conducted over the past year that capture important lessons learned about technology use in the classroom, and how those lessons can be applied in 2023.

Technology now touches virtually every aspect of education

Collage by Gina Tomko/Education Week and Getty

There are almost no jobs left that technology doesn’t touch. That’s why superintendents and principals should be aware of how technology impacts the whole district, said Kelly May-Vollmar, the superintendent of the Desert Sands Unified School District in California. She also shared her perspective on technology use from when she was a principal and chief technology officer.

And Patricia Brown, the director of technology for the Ladue school district in Missouri, talked to Education Week about how technology should influence learning for this generation of students. Hint: It doesn’t always mean more technology, she said.

Illustration of Q and A speech bubbles.

Francis Sheehan/Education Week and Getty

Tech fatigue is a real problem. How schools should deal with it

Some teachers are tired of having to learn another new technology. Heather Esposito, a teacher technology coach for New Jersey’s Cherry Hill school district, share her strategies for building on teachers’ emerging skills and combating tech fatigue.

What makes an effective 1-to-1 computing program

Illustration of woman using laptop.

Illustration by F. Sheehan/Education Week (Images: iStock/Getty and E+)

1-to-1 computing programs are now commonplace in K-12 schools. But simply putting devices into the hands of students doesn’t automatically translate into academic advantages. Sally Adams, a technology facilitator for California’s Desert Sands Unified School District, talked to Education Week about the foundation for an effective 1-to-1 computing program.

What you need to know about flipped classrooms

Futuristic education technology and smartphone application. Girl student on top of phone and teacher on a laptop. Virtual college or school. E-learning

iStock/Getty Images Plus

The sudden shift to remote learning during the pandemic demonstrated some of the benefits of technology-driven educational strategies such as the “flipped” classroom. Three teachers who started using the flipped method in their classrooms well before the pandemic talked to Education Week about what it takes to create a flipped classroom and how students have responded to the approach.

Middletown City School District Superintendent Marlon Styles Jr. speaks at the 2022 ISTE Leadership Exchange in New Orleans on June 26, 2022.

The ‘digital divide’ is still a big problem

For Marlon Styles Jr., the superintendent for the Middletown City schools in Ohio, one of the biggest tech challenges schools are facing right now is access to tech tools designed specifically for students “who are sitting in the gap.” In a conversation with Education Week, Styles talked about why digital equity is one of his top priorities and how he’s approaching that challenge in this district.