Remembering Why We're Educators
by Tommy Tyler
Many of the common problems school leaders are dealing with today are directly related to school finance and budgets. More and more school districts across Arkansas and the nation are struggling to maintain needed staffing, keep the technology upgraded, and provide sufficient bandwidth for todayís cloud-based services and learning resources. Money problems are so severe in some districts that they are formally listed as in "fiscal-distress." Five Arkansas districts are on the most recently posted list on the Arkansas Department of Education website, and 124 California districts find themselves in a similar fix.
Using Technology to Build Community Involvement
by Janice Delagrammatikas
I confess. As a parent, I was one who signed up for school site council and then didn't participate. I would find parent surveys at the bottom of my children's backpacks long after they were due or I would just forget to send them back. I had the best intentions and I was certainly pleased to be asked, but when it came down to it, I couldn't afford to take the time off work. I had class on the night meetings were scheduled, or it would just slip my mind. Years later, as an administrator, I struggle to find the right mix of stakeholder involvement activities so all parents and community members have the opportunity to be involved and contribute to the discussion. Fortunately, I have many more tools at my disposal than school leaders in the 1980's and 90's.
Packrati: My road to super-productivity!
by Susan Gilley
My motto is, "It's not what you know, but what you share!" People who know me know that I make no secret that almost all of my shared resources come from Twitter. Twitter is all about finding the right people to follow that will allow you find the resources that will help you do your job better. That's the key to me as to why Twitter is such a valuable social media tool.
In order to make Twitter successful and productive for me, I needed a way to get what I had tweeted to my bookmarks. I use Delicious as my bookmarking tool. My old school way was once a week or month, I would copy and paste each tweet over to my delicious account as a bookmark with tags. This was a horribly inefficient process. Then I discovered Packrati. Packrati works with my Twitter and Delicious accounts to automatically bookmark and tag anything I tweet.