SCHOOL ENVIRONMENT EVALUATION Technology Maturity Benchmarks Angie Kruzich EdTech 501

“Name of Institution”: Freedom High School, Maplewood School District, Washington State Demographics: ● Approx. 1206 students where about 52% are male and 48% are female ● 14% of the students are on free or reduced lunch program ● 57 teachers, an average of 11 years of experience, 68% have a master’s degree ● Every teacher and administrator has one or two desktop computers ● All staff and students have interdistrict e-mail accounts ● There are 3 distinct computer labs & computers in the library to hold 2 classes ● There are also 2 roaming labs for science equipped with laptops for full classes ● A couple of teachers have the survey clickers ● Just installed LanSchool software in labs ● All math teachers have a classroom set of TI-Nspire calculators with wireless abilities Maturity Model Benchmarks: ● Administrative ○ Policy ■ Behavioral: INTEGRATED - Most staff members are using assigned technologies such as e-mail. However, some are able to avoid as required technology is very recently attached to additional money. If a staff member does not participate, then they just don’t get the payment. ■ Resource/Infrastructure: INTELLIGENT - There is formal verbiage in the teacher’s contract now about maintaining a website presence. ○ Planning ■ Behavioral: ISLANDS - Besides maintaining a website presence, and checking e-mail, there is no other requirement at this time that teachers must use certain technologies within their curriculum. ■ Resource/Infrastructure: INTEGRATED - The school is supplied with lots of software and hardware. But there is only some connection to planning efforts. ○ Budget

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Behavioral: INTEGRATED - There is a fantastic technology budget, however, the process to obtain this money is not a good long-term solution as it is gathered in the form of a levy. ■ Resource/Infrastructure: INTEGRATED - The technology budget is mostly separated as a levy requires, although, there are ways to pay for technology within other budgets as well. ○ Administration Information ■ Behavioral: INTELLIGENT - All staff correspondence is done via email. This includes staff to staff and administration and parents and students. Very little paperwork can be found in a staff mailbox. ■ Resource/Infrastructure: INTELLIGENT - All desktop computers are now set up using a cloning technique. Therefore, all staff, administrators and students have access to all appropriate programs. Even the library computers have programs so students can access during waivers or after school. ● Curricular ○ Electronic Information ■ Behavioral: INTELLIGENT - Staff, Administrators and Students all rely heavily on information via electronically. If the power goes out, then no one can do any work any more! ■ Resource/Infrastructure: INTELLIGENT - All students have regular access to electronic resources and are available in multiple parts of the building before, during and after school in the library and career center. ○ Assessment ■ Behavioral: INTEGRATED - All staff, most students and most parents can access grades through an electronic account and check on grades anytime. All staff are required to calculate grades and submit grades electronically. However this is just data entry for scores that have mostly been graded in non-electronical ways. ■ Resource/Infrastructure: ISLANDS - The only software supplied is overall grade calculation. In the math department, we can now quiz on the wireless Nspires and the computer will also grade students. Only one teacher does this regularly. The others do not due to lack of time to learns so many new technologies on our “own time”. ○ Curricular Integration ■ Behavioral: EMERGENT - Again, the math department has Nspires, some other departments have a couple sets of survey clickers, turn-it-in.com is on site, etc. However, only some teachers have taken the initiative to learn different softwares. It all takes time. Most trainings are optional. So the staff development piece for our school and district needs some improvement. ■ Resource/Infrastructure: ISLANDS - Again, the math department has Nspires, some other departments have a couple sets of survey clickers, turn-it-in.com is on site, LanSchool for example are being provided.

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○ Teacher Use ■ Behavioral: ISLANDS - There are some individual teachers who regularly use technology to introduce curriculum with technology but not necessarily every day use. ■ Resource/Infrastructure: INTEGRATED - Most teachers have the software that they can handle with the time we have to work with it. However, after taking EdTech 501, I see there is a lot more out there to access. And whether or not teachers are using technology to teach versus complete their own work behind the scenes are two different topics. ○ Student Use ■ Behavioral: INTEGRATED - Most students access technology on a regular basis. The highest use would involve research and using work to type up papers. But students still could go to the library for the research and use a typewriter to type their papers. ■ Resource/Infrastructure INTEGRATED - Most students have a computer and/or internet at home. However, I have a few students every year that cannot afford internet, and maybe the computer. However they could access the computers in the library or the career center, but the times those are available are extremely limited. ● Support ○ Stakeholder Involvement ■ Behavioral: EMERGENT - I believe staff must be aware that decisions are being made because we are then informed of implementations. But the decision making model is not including staff members. This, to me, is a conscience decision by the school district to make decisions without involving stakeholders. Resource/Infrastructure: EMERGENT - Because the technology decisions are being made by the school district’s center office, very few groups, if any, are being included in the planning and implementation process. ○ Administrative Support ■ Behavioral: INTEGRATED - Administration is thoroughly involved with an ongoing discussion regarding technology. What stopped me from ranking them at the intelligent level, is that I don’t think it is intelligent to alienate your stakeholders and will have negative consequences in the long run. ■ Resource/Infrastructure; INTEGRATED - The administration is doing the planning and telling of the implementation. But again, the recent idea to rediscover a top down decision making model I cannot rate as intelligent when you do not include your stakeholders. ○ Training ■

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Behavioral: EMERGENT - As mentioned earlier in this survey, training is tied to additional money hoping that staff will self select trainings every year. However, due to the surmounting demands of teachers, most teachers opt out of trainings if they can. There is far too much other work to get done. ■ Resource/Infrastructure: ISLANDS - There is on-going trainings offered that are optional and a very limited staff to run the trainings. ○ Technical/Infrastructure Support ■ Behavioral: ISLANDS - Most staff only utilize formal or informal support when something they are working on goes wrong. Very few staff are taking on new technology projects at this time. ■ Resource/Infrastructure: ISLANDS - To save money, the district relies on staff within in each building to help other staff. The on-site technical support person only knows hardware, not software and makes it quite clear the day is over at 3:30pm. ● Connectivity ○ Local Area Networking (LAN) ■ Behavioral: ISLANDS - There is an very nicely established LAN system in place. However, we are actually told to avoid video to keep from overloading the server during the school day. We even sign an internet usage form that says we won’t do ANY streaming. ■ Resource/Infrastructure: INTEGRATED - Everyone has access to high speed networking in all work spaces. But again I did not rate it intelligent because of the server limitations. ○ District Area Networking (WAN) ■ Behavioral: ISLANDS - District services are very recently accessible on the server. However, it is mainly for personnel or news, what used to be sent via paper. There are not sophisticated uses like video or voice available. I don’t even know what that would look like! ■ Resource/Infrastructure: INTEGRATED - We definitely have good internet access, and if the connection is interrupted it is usually quickly fixed. However, I am completely unaware of any voice, video or data abilities on the district server. ○ Internet Access ■ Behavioral: ISLANDS - Besides using the internet for research in other classes, I am unaware of a lot of teachers using the internet as a tool to teach curriculum. ■ Resource/Infrastructure: INTELLIGENT - All classrooms and offices have desktop computers with internet connections. ○ Communication Systems ■ Behavioral: INTELLIGENT - The school is now almost completely paperless in terms of communication, as all staff utilize e-mail for communication. ■ Resource/Infrastructure: INTELLIGENT - All staff and all students (excet those students who may have been disconnected for

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violating the internet agreement) have e-mail accounts through the school. ● Innovation ○ New Technologies ■ Behavioral: ISLANDS - Some individual staff members readily take on new technologies to embed within their own curriculums. The math and science departments would be good examples of the islands that have been created. The technology may be available to all, but only a few have taken the additional time necessary to implement the technology into their curriculums to use as a learning tool. More staff do not due to lack of time to implement it. When new technology is introduced by administration, it does not mean another duty is removed from staff responsibilities. ■ Resource/Infrastructure: ISLANDS - I think staff in my building like the idea of having the technologies available, however lack of time to learn them and properly implement really slows you down. ○ Comprehensive Technologies ■ Behavioral: ISLANDS - The TV’s are disappearing since we have projectors, and VCR’s are almost all gone since we can access DVD’s or CD’s via computers, overheads are gone replaced with document cameras and this is integrated throughout the building. However, some can scan if they have a more sophisticated printer (I had to buy my own as the district has an approved list to choose from) and other advanced technologies are more isolated in pockets of islands. This area is on the verge of reaching an integrated rating. ■ Resource/Infrastructure: ISLANDS - Some teachers have access to video and audio capabilities. Currently, I may be the only teacher in building to have a new document camera that has recording abilities. Therefore, most teachers have one or two types of technology available, a desktop computer, a doc cam with projector and maybe some optional software. Overall Rating of School Environment: ISLANDS When I first began reading this assignment and thought about all the schools out there that do not have access to technology like my school does, I envisioned my school as obtaining a ranking of intelligent. However after going through each detail of the maturity benchmarks, I have come to realize my school has quite a way to go for that status. Instead, I am placing Freedom High School at a ranking of islands. There are several reasons I am making this decision. First of all, technology is not just about having access to the hardware. I believe after completing this survey,

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our school has intelligent access to hardware and intelligent technical support if any of the hardware needs replacing or if a staff member needs help with hardware during the school day. Here my school and school district rank very well. However, what is still lacking is using the technology we have access to as an actual learning tool rather than just a communications tool. The school has done a great job, although just recently, of going paperless for communication purposes. But I do not see all staff or even a majority of staff using technology to actually have students learn the material in day to day lessons. This is still at an islands level and as you can see in the actual survey, the majority of my rankings were at the islands level. I did tally the number of times each ranking was chosen throughout the survey. The islands ranking is supported by looking at some detail within several departments. In the math department for example, we have gained access to several technologies just during the past two years. Therefore some teachers have taken the extra time necessary to immediately embrace the class sets of Nspire calculators that were purchased with our math curriculum in 2010. One teacher uses them every single day in Algebra 2, to demonstrate new material, have students explore ideas, and even take quizzes, have the computer evaluate student scores and use those scores for grading. Two other teachers, use the calculators regularly to explore new material but limit it to just that. The remaining four teachers (including me, however will explain below) have not yet used the calculators with their intended purpose. Then one teacher (myself) has embraced the geometry software available to teach different geometry concepts in the computer lab. I feel this software is much more user friendly than that available on the wireless calculators. These examples definitely model islands behavior. The science department does have two class sets of laptops. Most of the science teachers use them but only in certain classes and mainly for the spreadsheet capabilities. The laptops are not always used however in all science courses; physics, biology and environmental science use them quite a bit whereas chemistry does not. Again this is demonstrating an islands ranking until all teachers are using the available technologies and moving beyond one technological application. Finally, in the humanities courses, the main use is to go to the computer labs. The purpose is normally for students to complete research on the internet and use Microsoft Office for the Word program. There does not seem to be a use of higher technologies for the purpose of learning the material. This may seem like a more integrated level for these departments as all teachers are using the available technology. However, the level of technology being accessed is not that advanced therefore, I would keep the ranking at an islands level. One large issue at Freedom High School for all staff is that there is a significant population of students without computer and/or internet access at home. Until this digital inequality is addressed, it makes it difficult for staff to use and assign more advanced technology based activities. Knowing there are students who cannot participate once

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they are at home, makes staff hesitant to take steps deeper into the technological teaching arena.

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