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Rob Cavanagh's discussion posts

  • Rob Cavanagh 19 Oct 2013 6:29pm () in 2013: Leadership and strategic planning for e-learning | NAPP Kōrero 14

    There is a lot of great discussion in this Korero. In my opinion the use of a distributed leadership model to support a strategic plan for technology is a great way of capturing expertise in an area that can have a very diverse skill base among staff. Technology seems to be one of those areas that can create angst or excitement among teachers. I have often heard people say that they 'need to keep up with technology' or that it is ‘so hard to keep up’ with everything changing so fast. Use of distributed leadership where colleagues work together to effect change can be a powerful way of altering this mindset. This subject takes me back to Chris Jansen’s presentation at the NAPP Hui about achieving the ‘tipping point’ in change by tuning into the professional competencies of staff and supporting them accordingly.

    Principals also need to ensure that they make themselves central to the process of change. Whether technology is a passion or not they need to model to the team the commitment that they are making to ensure strategic goals are met.

  • Rob Cavanagh 18 May 2013 9:34am () in Growing leadership of e-learning | NAPP Kōrero 6 - Resourcing

    There have been a lot of discussion in this forum about ensuring a clear and sustainable vision for elearning. Derek Wenmouth made a great point in his hui keynote that struck home for me when he spoke about all of the students we teach being born after the invention of the world wide web. He also noted that many of us are still treating aspects of elearning as if they are new and unique, when our students may have been using the same tools for years. There was also a lot of discussion about student voice and agency at the hui. These are things that school leaders need to consider when developing an ICT vision. These themes from the hui have given me the challenge of ensuring that this is happening within my school vision.


    As far as resourcing goes I agree with a lot of other posts which talk about the big decisions that school leaders have to make without much guidance or support. A lot of decisions around resourcing involve making a choice based on multiple pathways with multiple outcomes. A lot of these pathways involve different organisations and individuals competing for business which can impact on the decision making process. Sure there is unbiased support out there e.g. enabling e-learning, Chch’s GCSN, but there is still a big sense of the unknown when decisions around the resourcing of elearning are concerned. At my school we have learned some lessons the hard way when investing in ICT tools without a clear vision, buy in from the staff, and proper support/training. The biggest success around resourcing in our school of late has been the leasing of iPads. The reason I believe they have been so successful is because they serve as a vehicle to implement our schools growing philosophy of 'personalised learning'. As many others have a stated a key role for a principal is ensuring they have that blue thinking hat on at all times by making sure that ICT procurement is not a knee jerk reaction to the latest gadgets or gizmos, but linked to a strategic vision influenced by student voice.