Technology Master Teacher Program
aka: A Legal Pyramid Scheme
to Build Professional Learning
The Pioneers: Velma Davis and Marcia Jeans
This program was designed in 2009 by Velma Davis and Marcia Jeans to get a technology leader in each of the 99 schools in the Wichita Public School System. In 2011, budget cuts lead to the program's demise, however, it was given new life the Spring of 2014.
The budget has been as low as 40K to this year's budget seen above.
What are solutions to the barriers to a district not having the budget?
- All Saturday Training with No Stipend
- Partner with Corporations
Application and Selection Process
The teachers submitted applications with references. There were 75 applicants. Out of those applications, a little over half were chosen for the observation stage of the process. Two observers viewed each applicant for 1/2 hour at a time the applicant chose. The observations were kept in a Google Doc. After all the observations were complete, the arduous selection process occurred to narrow the pool down to 20. We were not able to do so, 21 were selected. (Five are attending Podstock!)
There were teachers who did no technology during the observation time. *** It was more important to have strong teachers rather than strong technology. I firmly believe I can teach someone how to use technology leaps and bound above teaching them to be a great teacher!
The Five Days of Training
All the training was ran through Edmodo. There was one large group and then small groups for each of the topics. Only the first day was lead by the district trainers. Each topic was assigned to a group. The groups were then given a date and time they were going to teach the concept to the rest of the group. Small groups were developed inside the Edmodo group to help facilitate sharing, connections, and dialogue across the district. These groups were selected based on their own self assessment in the google doc application of the knowledge they had for a topic.
The teachers in the district rose to the occasion! We had movies, charts, expert handout outs, and web pages created.
From this training, our trainers have done over 50 in-services, team meetings, or Professional Learning sessions! The one data point we can not track is how many side conversations that occur that guide learning for teachers. The teachers felt overwhelmed, but in a good way!
I equate the learning to blowing up a balloon. The teachers are full of new ideas and riding high then through equipment issues and timing get a bit deflated when going back to the classroom. However, that balloon never returns to its original form.