Technology, E-Leadership and Educational Administration in Schools: Integrating Standards with Context and Guiding Questions

Technology, E-Leadership and Educational Administration in Schools: Integrating Standards with Context and Guiding Questions

Jeremy Dickerson, Howard V. Coleman
Copyright: © 2012 |Pages: 15
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-61350-068-2.ch030
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Because of the ambiguity of terms for school leaders from country to country (principal, head, administrator, etc.), for the purposes of this chapter, candidates studying to become K-12 school administrators are referred to as “future educational leaders,” while active or current K-12 school administrators are referred to as “educational leaders.” This information will be useful at both the school and district levels, further supporting the use of the term “educational leaders.”
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With the pending retirement of many current educational leaders who can be described as the “Baby-Boomer” generation, there is an increasing need for new public school leaders during the next decade. Future educational leaders will face many issues related to the use of information technology and e-learning in leading 21st century schools. Individuals in educational leadership positions will also need to have personal technology productivity skills and a working knowledge of information technology to make the best decisions for their schools. Technology-related functions, operations and processes in today’s schools include purchasing, personnel, communication, infrastructure, learning applications, and information management. Perhaps most importantly, educational leaders should also be technological role models for their students, faculty and staff. Future educational leaders can understand and define their roles as school technology leaders by analyzing relevant educational standards in context and by thinking through case study scenarios via guiding questions in their preparation programs. This will provide them with valuable knowledge and a mindset to identify problems and develop rational solutions during their preparation.

The International Society of Technology in Education National Educational Technology Standards for Administrators (ISTE NETS-A) are used as a guide for preparing school leaders to effectively use technology. Educational leaders face many challenges related to technology in today’s schools. These include:

  • 1.

    Incorporating e-learning as a standard (not supplementary) part of instructional delivery

  • 2.

    Teacher and curriculum supervision in e-learning environments

  • 3.

    Management of school information technology infrastructure

  • 4.

    Technology-related personnel management and decisions

  • 5.

    Providing support for classroom technology integration in face-to-face instruction

  • 6.

    Developing and maintaining a school or district’s web presence

  • 7.

    Developing the personal technology productivity skills needed for today’s school teachers and school leaders

  • 8.

    Policy formation and guidelines for information technology purchasing and personal/professional use

  • 9.

    Technology systems for data management

  • 10.

    Technology and social/legal/ethical issues associated with students and school personnel.

This chapter addresses these issues by presenting a brief review of related literature, an analysis and overview of ISTE NETS-A, and by providing contexts, activities and guiding questions for each standard. The ideal reader of this chapter is a person who is either preparing for or currently holds a school leadership position, as well as stakeholders in educational organizations.


The International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) is committed to advancing excellence in learning and teaching through innovative and effective uses of technology (ISTE, 2010). For many years, the ISTE National Educational Technology Standards (NETS) have been guiding teachers and educational leaders as they attempt to integrate technology in schools and set goals for what students (NETS-S) and teachers (NETS-T) should know and be able to do with technology in education.

The National Educational Technology Standards for Administrators (NETS-A) provide a framework for conceptualizing the knowledge, skills, and dispositions of educational leaders so that they can effectively use technology to modernize schools and support student achievement. Don Knezek, ISTE CEO, states that integrating technology throughout a school system is a significant reform effort (ISTE, 2010). In addition, he confirms that the development and training of future school leaders’ technology skills must receive attention in a systemic and meaningful way. Brooks-Young (2002) suggests that developing a plan based on stakeholder input which infuses technology throughout all programs is critical in leading a school or district.

Key Terms in this Chapter

ISTE NETS-A: The International Society for Technology in Education National Educational Technology Standards for Administrators

Technology Integration Plan: A plan which clearly articulates how technology will be integrated into an educational organization

Technology Integration: Seamlessly using technology into instruction and/or school management systems

Future Educational Leaders: People preparing to enter educational leadership positions (typically in K-12 settings)

Digital/E-leadership: Leading the technology-related efforts for an organization

Educational Leaders: People currently serving in educational leadership positions (typically in K-12 settings)

Technology Professional Development: Training and educational situations designed to help school faculty and staff in schools learn more about technology and how to use technology in schools

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