Funding technology initiatives
Scott McLeod, J.D., Ph.D., is an Associate Professor of Educational Leadership at the University of Kentucky. He also is the Founding Director of the UCEA Center for the Advanced Study of Technology Leadership in Education (CASTLE), the nation’s only academic center dedicated to the technology needs of school administrators, and was a co-creator of the wildly popular video series, Did You Know? (Shift Happens). He has received numerous national awards for his technology leadership work, including recognitions from the cable industry, Phi Delta Kappa, and the National School Boards Association. In Spring 2011 he was a Visiting Canterbury Fellow at the University of Canterbury in New Zealand. Dr. McLeod blogs regularly about technology leadership issues at Dangerously Irrelevant and Mind Dump, and occasionally at The Huffington Post. He can be reached at scottmcleod.net.
Schools always have limited resources. Even when they get a big grant or the community approves a technology referendum, there's never enough money to go around. It seems to me that schools have a couple of general approaches that they can take...
Option 1 - Spread the money widely across the organization. Try and get as much hardware and software as possible, even if this means little or no staff development.
Option 2 - Identify strategic investments. Spend only in certain places within the organization and invest deeply in staff development to ensure that those projects are successful.
Obviously there's a continuum here - this is not necessarily an either-or choice. That said, why does it seem like most school organizations almost always pick Option 1? Does anyone think this strategy is working?