In the February 1st Learning Counsel event in Charlotte, N.C., one of the educators asked me what I think about what educators are doing as a body nationally. We have been on a tour of around thirty cities a year for four years with our Discussions events, so we are arguably in a good position to give an opinion.
What I see is, of course, teachers and administrators at every level are trying to get students to know things in a new context. What is fascinating right now about this endeavor is the fact that the mechanism of delivery of the “things to know” is morphing into a vast technological matrix of machines, software, and analytics.
The educators are also morphing, although to many it might seem like slow-motion. It is not. The speed of change and the “morph” is astonishing for a nation our size. Some, like Mike Hale, Director of Technology, Oconee County Schools in Watkinsville, Georgia, feels that what I used to talk about as the “rev-rate” of change (revolution-rate), has accelerated beyond the four-years-to-one announced in 2016. Now educators are living in “at least” a six years-to-one ratio of change. Hale thinks it is accelerating even faster now. Executives like Valerie Truesdale, Associate Superintendent for Personalization and School Partnerships of Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools in Charlotte, North Carolina, are so vitally aware of this that she loses sleep over the many ideas she keeps having and wants to do immediately, unable to “turn off” at night.
The fact that educators aren’t all screaming and running for the woods or retiring enmasse to avoid the tech incursion is amazing isn’t it? This digital transition is hard. Yet so many are running to it like Valerie and her team of awesome administrators.
To hear some of the very top executives speaking at our events is to hear a tone of optimism. They are making change-in-place against glued-down and even cemented-in habits over decades, inside a tech tsunami more complex than any other industry because it deals with all knowledge while transiting the living lighting of life – little humans. I want to give them all honor badges, capes, or maybe the light-saber that goes with our EduJedi Leadership Society program. Swoooorrrrrrrrrsh, swooorrrrrrrrrsh!
Most every educator right now has their super-hero attitude going and is living through the transition, a real redesign of education. It is interesting to see the varying levels of maturity city-by-city but maturing they all are.
The intellectualism being brought to bear, the questioning of such simplicities as even what it means to “know” something, the opening-of-the-hood of software and interoperability complexity, the “let’s try it” attitude, all of it and more is thrilling.
So Happy Valentines all of you Educators!
I think you are Amazing and I Heart You.