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Presentation: Oppe STaR Chart Analysis

Presentation:Oppe STaR Chart Analysis
According to the StaR Chart, our campus’ greatest strength is in the Key Area of Infrastructure for Technology, where we are classified as Advanced Tech in 2006-07 and 2008-09. Additionally, we have achieved Target Tech classification level in Internet Access Connectivity and Speed. I agree with this assessment with just one reservation: that it is unclear whether we really have, “Teacher cadres (who) have been established to create and participate in learning communities that stimulate, nurture, and support faculty in using technology to maximize teaching and learning.”

On the other hand, the StaR Chart shows that our campus’ greatest weakness is in the Key Area of Educator Preparation and Development, especially in the focus areas of Access to Professional Development (classified as Early Tech in 2007-08) and Professional Development for Online Learning (classified as Developing Tech for all three years.) I agree with this as this is the chief complaint in three campuses that I have worked in (in the same district), as well as among my colleagues in other schools and school districts. In the two campuses that I serve, it is quite apparent that teachers do not have a full grasp of how to integrate technology into their daily lessons, or even to gather sources for teaching and lesson planning. We discuss a few online resources and computer programs that teachers and students can use to supplement regular instruction, but full professional development sessions for such resources have been sparse. I humbly submit that his would easily be addressed if each campus has a designated person for technology professional development, as well as Instructional Support, another area of need for these campuses.

This issue is highly critical as we cannot expect teachers to fully implement the Technology Applications TEKS, not to mention attain the goals of the Texas Long-Range Plan, if they do not become technology proficient themselves and receive the requisite professional development. Again, this would easily be addressed if each campus has a designated person for technology professional development as well as instructional support. Interestingly, this position was eliminated two years ago, and we now only receive infrequent inservice (brief at that) from one specialist for all elementary schools in my district. My campus and the district as a whole may have adequate (and improving) physical infrastructure, but the human infrastructure still has a lot of room to grow.

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