Log in

2013: Leadership and strategic planning for e-learning | NAPP Kōrero 14

Started by Karen Spencer 22 Aug 2013 3:36pm () Replies (350)

Planning strategically for the integration of technologies across a school community can be complex, challenging and rewarding by turns. A principal will draw on a wide variety of competencies to balance the needs of learners, staff, the community and infrastructure. Increasingly, many schools in New Zealand are turning to the e-Learning Planning Framework to help inform that process.

In this Leadership story from Enabling e-Learning's media gallery, Tony Zaloum and Mark Quigley, school leaders at Orewa College, talk about how they have juggled a number of complex dimensions as part of their e-learning planning [transcipt on the Enabling e-Learning site]:

This kōrero will unpack some of the attributes and competencies that e-learning leaders seem to have, and explore ways in which the framework can be used as a smart tool in your review and planning processes.

There will be two webinars [the second repeats the first] as part of this kōrero, which you can register for below:     Webinar 1: 11 September   |   Webinar 2: 30 October

Our key question: how can principals take an active role in their school’s strategic planning to use technologies as part of effective teaching and learning?


  • Caron Watson (View all users posts) 17 Nov 2013 10:38pm ()

    Like you Davina I spent time reading through the posts and there are lots of really good advice when it comes to the principal and e-learning. I agree with you in that the principal does not have to be the expert but it is important to lead the shared vision and to resource appropriately. We are currently involved in e-learning at school with an outside provider which has involved staff meetings and one on one sessions. The one on one sessions have been the most benefical for staff including TA's and support staff so each person is learning at their own rate and level of expertise. We have accommodated this by releasing teachers for the PD with both the principal and myself going into classes. To use technology effectively in the classroom teachers need to skilled and this takes time, resources and effective PD.

  • HelenAlmey (View all users posts) 17 Nov 2013 3:29pm ()

    I agree absolutely.  And it is part of that delegated leadership that is essential in the role as a Principal.  I like this model of having a passionate person lead the learning.  With e-learning there are always going to be detractors, luddites and sceptics. You need someone who believs int he technology AND has made it work in a meaningful way to lead the change.  As a Principal, you utilise the skills that are present in the staff to help achive your vision.  I have to do that in my sphere re e-learning sceptic that I am. I worry about the pace of change re technology  though.  Do you have to draw a line in the sand and say' come on, let's at least start somewhere' instead of waiting for hte next ' thing' ?  Also security worries me a lot - the issue of safety and these technoligies  - for the student and the teacher. Should that hinder the implementation of technoliges in the classroom or school?  It is an issue at my place re BYOD.  The big NO has gone up from the technology co-ordinator because of security.

  • Rebecca (View all users posts) 17 Nov 2013 3:10pm ()

    Like what many people have mentioned throughout their posts, it is important that everyone is continuously upskilled in elearning (as it is everchanging).  It doesn't have to be the prinicpal that leads the elearning in the school but rather learn alongside the staff (and this goes for not just elearning PD).  For many 'time' is an essential element - some teachers are not quite ready for ICT to be used effectively throughout their classroom programmes.  It is imporant for these teachers to be upskilled.  One idea that we are going to try with our 'reluctant' teachers is for them to take an iPad home over the Xmas break.  This way they can 'play' and know that it isn't too scary.  If teachers are using the devices themselves in their everyday lives they will see the significance and importance of using it in our classrooms.

  • Sean Wansbrough (View all users posts) 17 Nov 2013 12:35pm ()

    I agree with much of what has been said here. At our school we spent most of the year getting the conditions right for having an e-learning environment.

    Thgis included - 

    Holding a community consultation.

    Joining knowledgenet and linking it with our SMS.

    Debating the policies and procedures at board and management level.

    Looking at and talking to other schools.

    Installing a robust wireless network.

    Having ultrafast broadband at the gate and then in the school.

    Having a student use agreement and procedures around using devices.

    Learning around digital citizenship. 

    And finally we are looking forward to next year identifying pedegogical change.

    This gradual process allowed us to be successful in implementation in our school.

  • Linda Baran (View all users posts) 17 Nov 2013 9:45am ()

    Hi Brandon. Yes, getting parents on board is a real challenge. They have their own passwords to get onto the portfolios, so losing passwords is often an issue. We ask for parent feedback on their child's work, but this happens rarely. I send out regular emails to remind parents to catch up with the latest entries in the portfolio. We also ask parents to share their thoughts about their child's portfolio entries at learning conferences, so the expectation is that they've viewed them before coming in for an interview. The best way generally, is to get the students on board, and tell them that part of their homework is to sit their parents down and share their latest work.

    We tend to avoid the file accessibility issue by making sure there is no downloading required - documents are copied and pasted in, or more complex ones are added as an image. Sound files are brought in as Voicethread or Soundcloud, so the content is online. Videos are uploaded to Youtube, or the media gallery on the LMS system, with a link on the page.  We try to embed as much as possible - any apps we use online tend to have an embed feature.  The students are very good at problem solving to find the best method to upload their work.

  • Davina Parangi-Brown (View all users posts) 16 Nov 2013 10:03pm ()

    I have spent some time reading through some of the posts here and agree with what has been discussed by most of you.  The Principal has an imperative role in the implementation of e learning planning and development within a school.  This doesn't necessarily mean that the Principal must be the e learning expert.  It is just important that the  principal and the Board have a shared vision for e learning and that staff know what this vision is.  Staff also need to have input into the strategic vision for e learning and the Principal needs to make it a priority to allow staff time to engage with new technologies or new expectations placed on them.  The e learning framework is a great place to start.  We looked at this as an e learning team this year and it was interesting to see where each of us identified where we would be placed as a school on the framework. It was interesting to see that we didn't have a shared understanding so this made me wonder if we actually know where we are heading? Where the BOT and Principal want us to be etc etc.  I think for far too long the vision has been shared with a very small number of people rather than the staff as a collective unit.  After all the ones that will ultimately be implementing and effecting change at the ground level will be our teaching staff.  

  • Suzanne Bradburn (View all users posts) 15 Nov 2013 8:40pm ()

    Agree with your comments Glenis about the Principal being seen as a learner rather than the e-learning expert. It gives the Principal the opportunity to model best practice through inquiry.

  • Suzanne Bradburn (View all users posts) 15 Nov 2013 8:33pm ()

    I agree John, the focus still must be on student outcomes and e-pedagogy is another means to achieve these outcomes. Feedback, feedforward, staff and student voice are all key features of good practice in this area.

  • Alison Tuck (View all users posts) 15 Nov 2013 8:06pm ()

    Hi Helen

    You make some really good points that resonate with my experience at school. A number of our students appear to be digitally savvy, but when it comes to using that knowledge for learning, it appears there are some holes in their experience. The equity of access issue is quite large for our school, and even though we have evidence that 85% of our families can acces the internet, it would appear that this is not typical of the home situation. For students doing digital at home is not so easy. That of course has implications for what staff may want them to do in their own time. We had an LMS system which is now defunct. Staff have lost their enthusiasm and the last two years of professional learning seems to have been wasted. We were riding the wave, but now it seems we have to start all over again. This becomes quite frustrating and we lose the good will of staff.

  • Brandon Payne (View all users posts) 15 Nov 2013 5:59pm ()

    5 year projections sounds a bit of a push. For every task we seem to have in class there are students with 2 or 3 different apps to use!

    Perhaps a focus on the skills and competencies you wish to promote could be the focus with the tools updating on such a regular basis?

Join this group to contribute to discussions.

e-Learning: Leadership

e-Learning: Leadership

Exploring leadership for change, vision, policy and strategy that integrates ICTs into learning.