Giving Compass' Take:

• Sam Peterson explores the role of technology in education, including benefits, drawback, and implementation hurdles that can make or break edtech. 

• How can funders help schools identify technologies with that add the most value and implement those technologies well? 

• Learn about the limitations of edtech

What role(s) should technology play in education? How is current research-based evidence validating tech integration? Is it? Answers to satisfy all sides of the debate may not readily present themselves, but let’s examine a few different views on the matter.

Rather than create dependencies and turn children into submissive robots, as many fear, technology may actually be leveraged to enable greater autonomy and develop real leadership skills among students. The TechXpert program at Roosevelt Elementary School in Park Ridge, Illinoistargets student interest in emerging technology while making the most of young people’s natural inclination to transform into leaders when granted responsibility. The program has been an unexpected success, encouraging productive peer-to-peer interaction and allowing older students to take on the role of mentor to their younger schoolmates, all without placing more demands on the teachers themselves.

Setting aside the more common concerns of the tech-phobic for the moment, one must admit that there are significant logistical hurdles to technology integration within any school or district. Staff training procedures still leave much to be desired, for example. The same goes for many of the professional development opportunities currently available to teachers. And despite the edtech industry’s best efforts, addressing the needs of all learners is something that technology has yet to achieve with 100% success, especially when it comes to personalizing instruction across languages. Still, there may be some lessons that teachers can learn from the tech industry of today to prepare the leaders of tomorrow.

Read the full article about technology in education by Sam Peterson at EdSurge.