You have recently been hired as the technology
administrator for a midsize school district in a rural area. You are
responsible for technology throughout the district. This includes all
computers, networking devices, telephone services, workstations,
laptops, software, etc., for four elementary schools in four different
towns, one middle school, and one high school. Prior to your arrival
there was no technology administrator—only a teacher or technology
coordinator at each school with responsibility for any local technology.
were hired to ensure consistency in technology throughout the schools.
Your mandate includes working with teachers to help them create a plan
for ensuring students K–12 are proficient in the use of technology as
they move from grade to grade and also includes ensuring student records
can follow them as they move up in grades and from building to
building. You were also hired to streamline processes, to create a
centralized location to house all student records, to maintain current
technological equipment in each of the schools, and to plan for future
growth and emerging technology adoption. You must do all of this while
remaining within tight budget constraints.
The elementary schools
use Macintosh machines in the classrooms and Windows machines in the
office. The middle school uses Linux machines in the classrooms and
Windows machines in the office. The high school uses Windows machines in
both the classrooms and the office.
Currently, students moving
from one of the elementary schools to the middle school have their
academic records saved on DVD. These DVDs are transported at the end of
the year by the school janitors and delivered to the desk of the middle
school records clerk. The middle school records clerk was hired
specifically to upload individual student records from DVDs into the
middle school’s record system. The transition from the middle school to
the high school is the same. Each school has sufficiently fast Internet
that was installed as part of a massive state “get connected” initiative
in the past year.
In addition to the technology issues, you quickly discover there are neither set expectations nor a reporting structure.
elementary school teachers responsible for the technology in their
buildings are classroom teachers and handle the building technology for
an additional stipend each year. You discover that there are some power
conflicts between these teachers. Each disagrees with how the others
handle the technology at their schools, thus each school handles
technology and student records differently. Also, each of the elementary
school teachers report to their respective building principals, not to
As the technology administrator, you have to figure out how
you can get the four elementary school teachers to work together while
also not overstepping your authority with their building principals.
After briefly chatting with each of the four elementary school teachers,
you discover that they all think the mission the superintendent has
given you is impossible. They don’t believe you will be able to
centralize the student record system or create consistency in how each
school manages technology, much less how each school teaches technology
to the students.
The persons responsible for technology at the middle and high schools
were hired as technology coordinators. The teachers responsible for
technology at the elementary schools resent the middle and high school
technology coordinators because they only have responsibility for
technology, not classroom teaching or management. The middle and high
school technology coordinators report directly to you (starting
immediately) rather than their building principals. The high school
technology coordinator is a retiree from a very large computing firm and
likes to be known as the resident expert in Windows machines—even
though this coordinator has not remained current on emerging systems and
technology since retiring more than 10 years ago.
Prior to making
any changes or proposing any plans, your superintendent has asked that
you put together a presentation about possible solutions that you will
eventually present to the school board.
Task: Questions to be answered.
Develop a strategic plan to be presented to the school board that
outlines how you would address the issues in the scenario by doing the
1.. Discuss strategies that could be employed
within the culture of the school district in the scenario to build
commitment and buy-in for the project.
2. Explain how you plan to
integrate strategies for overcoming obstacles with competing sources of
power and influence in the scenario.
B. Write a personal reflection on your leadership strategies in which you do the following:
1. Justify how the leadership style you adopt for the scenario might influence the success of your project.
2. Discuss how your actions might affect power, tension, and ideas in the scenario.
3. Explain how you might overcome the communication barriers present in the scenario.
Discuss how you would approach conflict resolution for different types
of conflict in the scenario (e.g., process, task, relationship,
5. Discuss how you would apply specific techniques to gain