Why am I excited for the new school year? Thanks for asking, here’s why:
1. My school is entering into a new technology initiative after two years of research, professional development and infrastructure upgrades. This year each of our incoming freshmen will receive a MacBook laptop for use in school and at home. Our upperclassmen will be able to “Bring Your Own Technology.” Although not my original plan, this dual program will allow our administration to evaluate from students, parents and our faculty the pros and cons of both. Given financially realities the BYOT program may realistically become our future!
2. A New Cell Phone Policy (Well, sort of..) This year student will be able to carry phones on their person. (Ugh, gasp,what?) Yes, surprise to many our old policy of having students leave their phone in the lockers was not the most effective policy. As well, each year we find an increasing number of students with smart phones. However, our new policy is not completely opening the doors to phone use throughout school. We have decided to allow students to carry their phones. Phones are expected to be off while in students possessions. In class the ability to use a smart phone will be decided by the individual teacher. If a teacher is not comfortable with allowing the use of cell phones during the class students will be expected to keep the phone turned off.
3. (What I am most excited about!! –>) I am most looking forward to teaching my Marketing and Web 2.0/PLN class and utilizing these devices each day!! The flexibility, resources, collaboration, communication, presentations and other great things the students will be able to utilize to assist their learning is tremendous!
Leading into each year is like preparing for your favorite sport. You plan, practice, assess, practice, plan, and then go! After your initial launch you must once again go through the process to make sure you are on the correct track. The big difference in preparation vs the game is finally having the ability to put on the jersey or uniform. You have finished, “going through the motions” and are able to get into it for real!! While my school year is still officially a few weeks away, the anticipation is growing!
Have a great year in your students’ learning and your own learning!