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How can we change the technology culture at schools when staff resists?

Hi. I have been at a number of schools that do not use technology to the fullest (or hardly at all in some cases) and there seems to be every excuse in the book for why this is so. Do you have any suggestions for working with reticent staff?

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The leadership really has to come from the head - a teacher cannot work in isolation. It should be built into performance management etc.


However, finding something that actually hooks a single teacher may mean that one teacher gets involved, after that it needs a drip feed to build confidence and expand the range of technologies used.


If one can work with the head to find that hook, find a way to make his or her role easier and more productive it may be easier to get the staff involved.


It is quite a battle though!



Maybe there's too much emphasis on performance? If I'm an older teacher with an aversion to technology, the last thing I want is to be rated about my use of technology. If we change our attitudes towards being more empathetic towards each other (a la, differentiated learning) the outlook will improve.

In the UK at  least ICT is part of the National curriculum so the children are entitled to their lessons - not to provide them is not helping the pupils and also teachers are not fulfilling their obligations. The head is responsible to make sure teacher so meet the needs.



Maybe discuss our ever changing society. Our society is moving so quickly and technology is changing as well. The students we are educating are our future. Don't we want to expose them to as much technology as we can? If not they may not have skills for future jobs. We as teachers  also need to educate ourselves on the technology.
I agree with Courtney's comment.  I have grown up having some technology in my classroom since 1st grade.  However, even I didn't realize the importance of using technology in the classroom until a recent discussion I had in a course I am taking.  Technology needs to be used in classrooms now as our students are growing up in a society that surrounds them with it on a daily basis.  Students are going to need to have the skills to use new technologies as they go into higher education and the work force.  Discussing this topic helped me to realize technology's importance and that it is quickly becoming a right in our student's education.
I really agree with Carol - you need to get buy-in from the top.  The teachers need to know that 21st Century Skills and NETs standards will be a mandate, and that needs to come from top level admins.  Also, finding something that hooks the most reluctant - for instance I recently introduced the idea of Skype in the Classroom in a PD session and one of the teachers who I thought would never come around was thrilled by the concept.  You never know what will catch.  Try out a few ideas, try to match some web tools with what matters to the teachers.  Use to teach kids finance, culture, how small the world is, social responsibility, etc.  Find a class in a country you are studying and meet via Skype or try ePals on occasion.  Try to find the hot buttons because I find they are there, if made to seem simple (and they are) to the most reluctant of teachers.  It needs to fit with their curriculum and their plans.

I'm not sure which comes first: the techno culture or the ed reform culture. Maybe in tandem?  A lot of Sir Ken Robinson's resources speak to the big idea of the need to change how we teach our children.  I think that's the starting point, because integration of technology into the classroom is not the end or goal of the process.  It's the vehicle that helps teachers to make change happen, but the driving force is really the need to prepare our students for the world that is rather than the world that was.  Once teachers realize the bigger goal, I think many will understand that using tech is a tangible way to move into the paradigm shift. 




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