Today I participated in a meeting with a principal and an instructional coach who recently transitioned from being a technology coach. Our goal this year is to increase the number of coaching cycles the instructional coach engages in, so we opened the meeting by reviewing her current partnerships. We learned that a few staff continue to ask her to assist with technology items such as setting up Google Sites and teaching students how to use specific iPad applications. The school these wonderful staff happen to work in recently had a technology support position added. Our conversation quickly turned to the distinction between what the instructional coach is here to help with, and what the technology support position is here to help with.
The principal drew what I think is a brilliant line: If the teacher’s request is related to standards and student learning outcomes, the instructional coach should partner up with the teacher. If the request is about teaching students how to access and use an iPad app for the sake of using it, the technology support staff member should be called upon. The next step for our group is to create a flow chart or other document that staff can use to determine the appropriate staff member to connect with when tech help is needed.
You might think differently about the division of responsibilities described above. That is ok! The real take-away here is to be sure that roles and responsibilities are clear and articulated when developing an instructional technology plan. This can ensure that teachers, and students, are able to get the appropriate help quickly. Examples of this can be found in the Now Classrooms Leader’s Guide!
Written by: Becky Fischer