Technology and Schools: the Shift from Liability to Asset
All too often in K-12 Education, technology assets are more highly valued by the fiscal services office than by a school or classroom of learners. Without question, many tech components are costly, both at the time of purchase and throughout their duration of use. But frankly, what does this have to do with schools and learning? Why do we spend so much time dialoging and debating the costs associated with technology? Busses, textbooks, training, parent involvement rooms, school buildings…..and on and on, cost as much or more than the technology placed in today’s classrooms.
And yet, even with the added burden of tightening budgets, few are rejecting the idea of keeping busses safe and well-maintained, or using dollars for updating or building new schools. Though the complex budgets of public schools are beyond the scope of this article, it gives one cause to pause when you really stop to think about the huge emotional value placed on technology acquisition in schools.
So, why are some items more accepted and viewed as more necessary?
The answer may be found by taking a closer look at the actual history of technology use in schools and classrooms. Possibly there is a very valid reason why many educators, parents, district representatives, and community members cry foul when they hear about a school district spending chunks of money on technology- they have little belief that the purchase will be of value to the educational outcome of the learner the tool is purchased to serve.