County Schools Plan Technology Facilitators To Help With Flood Of New Devices

Thursday, March 20, 2014

County school officials gave a presentation on Thursday to the School Board's technology committee, laying  out its goals for the next three years, including hiring technology facilitators to help teachers give their curriculum a technology upgrade.

One committee member said, "We don't currently have the structure in place to adequately train everybody with access to all the devices that are flooding in."

But all of the new technology available to students has brought other issues as well.

Teachers must keep students from using their phones during class as well as determine which sites students can access when they are allowed to use devices on school Internet.

Superintendent Rick Smith said, "It's a behavior problem, not a device problem. We have to decide how we hold people accountable to that." He said some teachers had a "parking lot" for cell phones as soon as students walked into the classroom.

However, it was pointed out that even though social media can be a distraction, it also holds much untapped potential as far as education goes. Committee members said some teachers were using Twitter to allow students to interact and share information pertaining to the lesson.

While some schools have yet to be upgraded, some teachers have already "flipped" their classrooms. These teachers film their lesson, allowing their students to watch it on their own time. This allows them to use their class time in a more hands-on manner. Students no longer spend lengthy amounts of time listening to lectures only to struggle with homework problems later. Instead, they do the practice work in class where they are able to receive help from their teacher.

Superintendent Smith said, "The more we engage the student, the less discipline we'll have to have."

In the Technology Implementation Plan, six specific goals were set.

The first is targeted professional development, providing teacher support and training on technology integration. To accomplish this, the Board seeks to create a Professional Learning Department and hire 25 technology facilitators.

The second goal is upgrading infrastructure such as wireless internet connections and bandwidth.

Third is equal device access for all students through leasing options and providing devices for students who can't afford their own.

The fourth goal is PARCC preparation and assuring there will be available tech support during testing times.

Fifth is the development of electronic media. This goal includes teaching students to use social media appropriately as well as making digital lessons available to teachers. The Board also wants to take greater advantage of Cloud Computing.

The sixth goal is to improve internal and external communication channels between all stakeholders.

The last goal is to find more technology funding sources, such as grants.

 

 

 


Cleveland State Host 8th Annual Multicultural Fair

Cleveland State Community College hosted its eighth annual Multicultural Fair on Saturday. The fair, designed to celebrate the different cultures, featured a colorful parade of nations, international studies information, booths featuring different nationalities, and culturally based entertainment, including the St. Therese Spanish Youth Dancers, Mawre and Company African Dance ... (click for more)

Baylor Community Service Group Leaves For Jamaica

Ten service-minded Baylor students left this week to travel to Jamaica over spring break, where they will work in the squatter community of Ferry, an orphanage in Kingston, the Home for the Aged, and primary schools in Kingston.  This year’s group includes James Atkins, Natalie Becker, Erin Blalock, Kathryn Cash, Caroline Combs, Natalie Javadi, Ansley McWilliams, Kate Probasco, ... (click for more)

Family Escapes Sunday Morning Blaze

A Chattanooga family was getting ready for church Sunday morning when they heard a loud pop on the back side of the house. The pop they heard was apparently a window busting from intense flames on the outside of the house. Larry Erskine, his wife Nicole, and their two-year-old daughter got out of the house without injuries and called 911.  The Chattanooga Fire Department ... (click for more)

Firefighters Respond To 2 Kitchen Fires

Chattanooga firefighters responded to two kitchen fires within the past 24 hours. The first one occurred Saturday morning at 3116 15th Ave.  Captain Joey Smith with Engine 5 said the firefighters were able to contain the fire to the kitchen area. The lone occupant got out of the house safely. The dollar loss was estimated at $15,000. The cause of the fire was ruled accidental, ... (click for more)

Finley Stadium Needs To Grow Up - And Response

RE:  Finley Stadium Financial Picture Rosy; Beer And Alcohol Sales Approved; AstroTurf Almost Ready and City, County Pitching In $250,000 Each For New Finley Stadium AstroTurf I read a story here five days ago about a rosy future for Finley stadium. It lead me to believe that the stadium was making money and even improvements with donations.  Then we get a short ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The Sunday Funnies

They say March roars in like a lion and leaves like a lamb. So as you reach for your lambs-wool sweater on this last Sunday of the month, allow me to lighten up a bit with a new edition of my Sunday Funnies. I have a delightful crowd that keeps me supplied in jokes and these are some of the best that have come my way: A WOMAN'S PERFECT BREAKFAST -- She's sitting at the table ... (click for more)