I have been mulling over this post for the last few days. Actually, I have been mulling over this post for years, I just didn’t know it. I thank Dr. Scott McLeod for triggering this blog of epic importance.
Recently an article from the Orlando Sentinel and a post from Dr. McLeod on his blog rebutting the article have helped me in getting this post out of my head. I teach for a Central Florida school district neighboring the district discussed in the Sentinel’s piece. The issues of whether using social media has been an ongoing debate down here for a while. The Central Florida area, as well as many others throughout the country had unfortunately had its bout with student-teacher inappropriate relationships.
The question is this: is the problem the technology, or the educator?
Blaming technology is not the answer. Instead school boards red to focus their attention on supervision of their educators to ensure that they are professional in their educational responsibilities. These educators will misuse whatever relationship they have with their students, whether it be digital, via text message, or face-to-face. Holding an entire generation of students hostage from 2.0 technologies because a few bad, bad people misuse them is not the answer. Teach responsibility, not just to the students, but to educators as well.
The district that I work for has locked down technology because of the misuses and abuses of educators who were careless. We currently use Moodle and Gaggle… and that is all. We have no access to blogs, social networking, Google Apps for Education and other phenomenal technologies because they fear their use. Is this really what we want for our tech-savvy students?
Or, are we getting left in the [chalk] dust?
More to come…
Mike Meechin, M.Ed.