Effective Projects Case Study
Development Project at Nashua School District
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is a story about a project that started 5/1/2007.
For more information, please contact: Richard Farrenkopf
The project plan is comprised of two facets. The first is
to develop a teacher leader cohort for elementary and middle schools that
will serve as an exemplary teacher
team for demonstrating best practices in integrating the ICT standards.
Another facet is to serve as a pilot group for the development and
implementation of a K-8 electronic portfolio system prototype. Based on the
vision of a 21st Century Classroom environment, where technology and internet
opportunities for students are seamless across the curriculum, and
communication and media literacy is an integral part of the school
environment, teachers participating in
the project received laptops, LCD projectors, and digital cameras in order to
achieve this intent. Developing teacher knowledge of the ICT standards and
skill with technology and media literacy applications is a vital element in
the plan. Title I (DINI) funds were allocated to employ a full time ICT
Specialist. In the capacity of coach, the ICT specialist provided initial
summer training to the teachers, conducts one-on-one site embedded
professional development with each of the teachers, and coordinates and
conducts afterschool training meetings through school year 2007-08.
Funding: This project was supported by $57,859 from NCLB
Title II-D (Educational Technology) and $68,000 in local funds. The project illustrates how federal
funding supports “Professional development
through teacher leaders - Preparing one or more teachers in schools as tech
leaders to assist other teachers.” The project addressed the following
grades and content areas:
PreK-2 Gr3-5 Gr6-8 EngLangArts Math Science
Integration of technology into the regular classrooms
in elementary and middle schools is slow in developing. Access to efficient
and updated technology equipment has continued to decline in the elementary
school in the past several years. Reductions in fiscal funding has resulted
in minimal capability to purchase, update, and/or replace equipment.
Currently, there are no ICT specialists in the elementary schools to provide
professional development to teachers in the application of the ICT standards.
The plot: Establishing a cohort of teachers that would have
vertical grade level representation, would geographically support future
outreach to neighboring schools, and finding a way to secure funding for an
ICT specialist to train and coach the teachers were challenges to be faced.
This is the second year that the teachers in
the Nashua School District have worked without a contract. From the onset of
the school year, the union has imposed a “work to rule”, and continued failed
negotiations resulted in minimal options for meeting with and working with teachers.
The teachers: 10
teachers were directly involved.
knowledge and understanding of the ICT standards, coupled with the coaching
and personalized technical assistance of the Integration and Communication Technology
specialist has resulted in more frequent and more integrated use of
technology in the classroom. Each teacher has a teacher website within the
District intranet system. Teachers are using blogging, learning logs, web
links, and have established folders of student work electronically.
A teacher survey was conducted to assess
teacher knowledge of the ICT standards, and the current level of application
and use of technology prior to the professional development, and the
establishment of the cohort. The survey was conducted electronically, and is
located on the e portfolio project site:
http://sharepoint.nashua.edu/ict/portfolio/default.aspx. Teachers participate
in a blog, where they write a weekly journal entry
describing the types of technology applications s/he has used in that week,
and reflections regarding practices to improve student learning.
The difference: Outcome: Student awareness and everyday use of
technology has increased in all of the classrooms participating in the project.
Students work on the Teacher Sites is evidence. Daily contact with both Staff and Students showed
involvment and a feeling of need to succeed.
conditions: The ability to purchase the
necessary technology equipment for the teachers’ classrooms, provide stipends
for additional professional development beyond the school day, and providing
on site embedded personalized professional development have been essential to
the success of this project.
for the future: Providing a
more comprehensive summer training workshop to introduce and prepare the
teachers in three areas; knowledge of the ICT standards, greater hands-on
experiences with the technology tools, and training on facilitation skills.
Using a more comprehensive teacher survey procedure
before during and after to better determine areas of progress and areas of
need. Using a student survey tool at
the beginning and the end of the school year to gather feedback on students’
perceptions about increased ICT integration.
Recommendations: This project has been a modest approach to develop
increased awareness, knowledge and application of the technology and
technology literacy by providing professional development using a coaching
and critical friends framework. The teachers participating in this project
believe they have realized significant professional growth because of their
experiences in the cohort. Each of them know and understand the ICT standards
better, and are continuing to develop and apply the tools and strategies they
are acquiring through the coaching.
our story: Teachers have facilitated
presentations at their school’s faculty meetings, and each teacher is
involved in a site based technology integration outreach project with another
grade level in their building.
to share: Any documents that promote the project are found at:
http://sharepoint.nashua.edu/ict/eportfolio/default.aspx. (The is not a
public site, and access must be requested when you go to the link.)