Used wisely, technology can enrich learning experiences, empowering students as digital creators, critical thinkers and problem-solvers while fostering global connections.
Technology also helps educators strengthen their instructional repertoires and collaboration with peers.
Visionary, strategic technology leadership is critical for creating a systemic digital ecosystem and preparing every child for the modern world. It is an incredible opportunity that doesn’t come without its challenges.
Making smart technology decisions in education is becoming more difficult, and the pace is accelerating in the fast-moving digital world.
The Consortium for School Networking’s new Driving K-12 Innovation series of publications helps school system leaders make sense of the most pressing trends, informing effective technology adoption and integration.
Guided by the research and input of an international advisory board of more than 100 distinguished educational technology experts, CoSN’s new three-part series and forthcoming toolkit help education leaders keep up with the digital ecosystem so they can spark extraordinary learning experiences for all children and better support teachers at the front lines.
The first of the three reports, Driving K-12 Innovation: 2019 Hurdles, explores the top five challenges hindering teaching and learning innovation.
The hurdles, as identified by the advisory board through a series of discussions and surveys, are challenges that make K–12 stakeholders slow down, evaluate, practice and then make the leap to better support teaching and learning.
They are: sustaining and scaling innovation; digital equity; the gap between technology and pedagogy; ongoing professional development; and technology and the future of work.
MORE FROM EDTECH: See five ways K–12 superintendents can lead digital innovation.
K–12 Schools Experience Persistent Technology Gaps
In addition to providing an overview of the top hurdles, our report takes a deeper dive into two major challenges.
First, the gap between technology and pedagogy, which encompasses cultural, leadership, pedagogical, curricular and procedural issues: Continuing advances in technology create disconnects between students’ needs and teachers’ skills.
Technology can accelerate teaching practices — good or bad — and necessitate instructional shifts to effectively support improved student learning.
Second, technology and the future of work, which continues to push educators to think about precisely what emerging technologies mean for education: Artificial intelligence, deep learning and robotics are among the game-changing technologies starting to alter the nature of work and, as a result, workforce demands.
While schools clearly face many hurdles in preparing students with the appropriate skills needed to succeed today, emerging technologies will likely bring even steeper challenges.
Now is the time for educators to seriously consider how technologies on the horizon will impact teaching, learning and the world that awaits students in coming years.
Digital fluency is rapidly emerging as critical for workforce preparedness. Digital citizenship is just as important: Students must understand how to live ethically and responsibly in the digital world.
MORE FROM EDTECH: Read about the top three elements of digital citizenship.
What Works for K–12 Schools?
The future of K–12 education is already reflected in a number of schools worldwide.
The next reports in the series, 2019 Accelerators and 2019 Tech Enablers, will discuss the thoughtful and intentional use of technology to help schools overcome obstacles and align with larger societal shifts that have the potential to spur positive changes in K–12 education.
Both will be available in the spring and summer of 2019, respectively, and the series will culminate in a comprehensive toolkit to help schools put ideas presented throughout the series into practice. For more information on the series and access to the research, or to download the reports, visit cosn.org/k12innovation.