How are Technology Implementations Contributing to School Culture and School Safety in your District?
What does school culture have to do with integrating technology into teaching and learning? How does this foundation lend itself to school safety? School safety relies on a myriad of systems and technology to ensure that all the aspects of school safety are communicating and working together as a symbiotic unit. However, if the fundamental systems, practices and mindset aren’t in place to support and sustain a school safety ecosystem, it’s wasted time and resources. It’s worth the due diligence to assess your current culture, leadership and technology ecosystem if school safety is an urgent priority. Reputable digital solutions such as FilterED can help you with this task. So before diving into piloting and adopting school safety solutions, zoom out and look at the big picture.
Gary Phillips (1996) defines school culture as, “The beliefs, attitudes, and behaviors which characterize a school.” Dr. Christopher Wagner (2006) adds:
- Shared experiences both in and out of school
- Agreement on how to do things and what is worth doing Staff stability and common goals
- Recognition of school stakeholders
We offer a few easy steps to help you take a pulse on the existing school culture and technology foundations developed in your district.
- As you reflect on the district as an organization and each school as its own entity, identify examples of how each of the actions and behaviors above are integrated into the culture. School communities are more likely to see increased positive student outcomes and safe spaces when a healthy school culture embraces trusting, transparent relationships and the purposeful use of technology.
- Ask yourself:
- How is technology currently integrated into our everyday routines?
- What’s our staff’s comfort level around the amount of technology we are using?
- What processes, timelines, and protocols are in place for vetting and piloting digital solutions?
- What does the planning, execution, management and collection of data look like around technology implementations?
- Would the current actions transfer to designing, implementing and maintaining a school safety ecosystem?
- The table below is divided into possible inputs that the district and schools contribute to this side of tech support, training and PD services. Many of these practices can be extended to school safety. Identify which ones you have in place and if there are any you can add to your foundation.
|District-supported services||School building-supported services|
|Teachers across multiple school buildings receive support from the district in a combination of ways.||School administration encourages and provides opportunities for staff within a building to participate in multiple activities that support staff needs while providing convenience.|
|District technology troubleshooting support||School building troubleshooting support|
|The district provides school personnel with a multi-tier approach to technical support that may include one or more steps: ||If staff follow the suggested troubleshooting steps and cannot solve the problem, the individual goes to a designated colleague within the building for assistance.|
|District technology training||School building training|
| These sessions are usually held off-site (in a location other than the teacher’s assigned school building) or online. The focus is on: ||
in a school building happens formally and informally throughout the year and
utilizes internal resources. It may include:|
|District professional learning||School building professional learning|
sessions are usually held off-site (in a location other than the teacher’s assigned school building) or as online webinars or user groups. The focus is on:||
development can take on many forms. Examples include: