Big League School Remodel: Systems vs. Silo Thinking



Lenny Schad is the Chief Technology Information Officer at Houston Independent School District. He is considered one of the greatest minds in P-12 education when it comes to information technology and technology management.

Schad has a vision for remodeling America’s school systems, and he says it’s very simple. “We have to get out of silo thinking, and we have to get into systems thinking. We have to think as a system; you can no longer have the curriculum plan and the system plan and the professional development plan and the principal leadership plan and hope that at some point it all crosses, because you’re never going to see the results,” said Schad.

Houston ISD is the seventh largest school district in the country with 284 schools serving 214, 175 students speaking over 100 languages. The district covers over 330 square miles. By any measure, it is a behemoth school system with the unique challenges of an organization its size. But according to Schad, “We have the same challenges as a system with 2000 students. Our issues are the same. It’s just a matter of scope and scale. The size is irrelevant when you start talking about how we are going to change instruction and how we are going to prepare our kids for the future. We need to stop thinking about technology as a solution, and start thinking about it as part of the classroom experience. It’s a balancing act.”

If your school or district is in the process of transitioning to digital, you’ll want to see this amazing video featuring Lenny Schad from the Learning Counsel’s National Gathering in Houston. It’s a virtual roadmap to success. You’ll understand the process, from community involvement to staff buy-in and organizational capacity. But most importantly, you’ll understand how to uncover the underlying questions that will get you to your learning goals.

Watch the video below.


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At the Learning Counsel’s Digital Transition Discussion events, there’s a lot to take in. At our one-day events, one of the highlights is the Panel Discussions where area professionals discuss key experiences.

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