This year, I resolve to ….

Support high-quality learning
Frankie Jackson, chief technology officer, Cypress Fairbanks (TX) Independent School District

“For 2019, our IT emphasis will be on cybersecurity and on high-availability, high-resiliency, high-speed wireless access to support 24 x 7 x 365 learning. Our primary goal is to build a world-class-quality K-12 technology service system, including achieving Level 2 in the ‘process and results’ categories of the National Institute for Standards and Technology’s Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award for Education.”

Celebrate progress
Kristina Stratton, principal, Westside Elementary School, Florida

“In the new year, when we receive our mid-year i-Ready results, I want to celebrate our students’ growth, paying particular attention to those who were below grade level on their fall assessment and have worked hard to make meaningful progress since then.”

Teach STEAM skills
Oletha Walker, challenge resource/project-based learning teacher, John F. Kennedy School, Connecticut

“I want to provide my students with opportunities to learn how to code using the Evo robots, which use a color coding language. When my students have advanced past color programming, they can program the same robots using Blockly/Java script. I also plan to use the 3Doodler EDU Create+, which lets students create 3D projects without having to wait hours for their design to finish printing on a 3D printer.”

Give students more time in our makerspace
Esra Murray, library media specialist, Cider Mill Elementary School, Connecticut

“Our goal for 2019 is to launch #Munch+Crunch @LLC, a lunchtime purposeful play opportunity for students to explore, design, and create using a variety of tools, including Raspberry Pi, Makey Makey, and Dash & Dot. Students have been asking to spend more time in our learning commons and more time tinkering in the makerspace, so our ultimate goal is to extend the space, especially during the dark and cold New England winters, to all learners who want to extend their own learning.”

Help teachers learn to code
Tina Coffey, instructional technology resource teacher, Roanoke County (VA) Schools

“Now that Virginia has passed Computer Science Standards that K-8 teachers will be required to implement starting next school year, my overarching goal is to spend the rest of this school year developing lessons and ideas that help teachers implement coding throughout their content areas. I plan on using several different resources to help with this endeavor. I’d also like to become more proficient with using code in Minecraft Edu to write lesson plans that incorporate it into core content areas.”

Expand professional development (PD) and keep learning
Kendra Murphy, digital learning specialist & learning designer, Charleston County (SC) School District

“My top 3 education intentions are to continue to build PD that empowers teachers and to model for them what they want to try in their own classes, to listen to different ideas and points of view, and to work to learn more and try new things.”

Help more students learn to use tech
Jenna Rosienski, 7th-grade teacher, Franklin Middle School, Wisconsin

“My hope is that we can get technology in the hands of students of all ages and abilities across the globe. Implementing programs like Discovery Education’s Ignite My Future in School can take a student’s education to the next level. As teachers, we need to be preparing our students for the complex problems of today and the future; many solutions will be made by empowering our students to use technology.”

Reduce paper and increase students’ self-reflection
Dene Gainey, 3rd-grade teacher, Seminole Science Charter School, Florida

“I will have students write a self-reflection weekly to reinforce learning of concepts and ideas.

“I will use less paper by having students document learning electronically and posting to their FreshGrade eportfolios.

“I will have my students respond to their reading by writing summaries and reflections in their digital portfolios.”

Expand my tech knowledge and usage
Susan Keene, 3rd-grade teacher, West Newton Elementary, Indiana

“My goal this year is to continue to look for innovative ways to incorporate new technology in order to support my students. Whether that be from fellow tech leaders on social media or reading more articles, I want to better prepare my students for future technology integration.”

Learn from my students and share their work globally
Gaila Sanders, teacher, Hillsboro High School, Texas

“Learn about an app from my students that they think is cool!

“Be brave and find a safe way to share my students’ work with the world!”

Provide authentic reading experiences for my students
Scott Hayhurst, teacher, Okanagan Mission Secondary School, Canada

“I would like to find more online spaces where students can read student-generated stories and share their own written creations. Expanding the audience for both my avid and reluctant writers helps make the entire process more relevant and powerful. Moreover, having stories that my readers can peruse will increase the chance that they find a writer or genre that hooks them and keeps them ‘turning the (digital) page.’”

Use data more effectively to support students
Jean Smith, 5/6th-grade teacher, Van Buren Public Schools, Michigan

“My 2019 goal is to better support my students’ instructional needs using data analyzed through my Illuminate Education assessments and progress monitoring.”

Encourage students to be safer on-  and offline
Cody Walker, technology director, West Rusk County (TX) Consolidated Independent School District

“We will aim to provide a safer online experience for our students and staff while maintaining the enjoyment of using technology in the classroom.

“We will strive to further educate our students on the importance of appropriate behavior when participating in online digital citizenship.”

Go paperless and expand our computer science offerings
Aimee Kroll, computer science teacher, Decatur Central High School, Indiana

“My goal is to become paperless in 2019. Our district gives us the tools to make this happen; I just want to make sure it is not at the expense of student learning.

“I want to grow our computer science department. My hope is for every student to know that they can code.”

Continue to improve the tech experience
Chris Lehmann, chief executive officer/founding principal, Science Leadership Academy Schools, Philadelphia

“I want to continue to work to make sure that the technological systems that we build for our students are thoughtfully designed so that the technology enables more complex work and that the interfaces students use never get in the way of the learning.”

Clarify the importance of edtech
Mark Hess, executive director of instruction, technology & assessment, Walled Lake (MI) Consolidated School District

“My New Year’s resolution is to redirect people who refer to edtech as an add-on or ‘nice to have’ in the classroom and tell them that edtech is sound instructional pedagogy in today’s learning environment.”

Get smarter about safety and security
Shelley Weiss, director of summer school and district safety initiative lead, Sun Prairie (WI) Area School District

“My resolution is to increase my knowledge and skills in the area of school safety and security with the end goal of supporting our district to be a leader in providing a safe, secure, and welcoming environment for all. We want to be a district that others emulate!”

Support the whole child throughout the district
Dr. Lisa L. Micou, social emotional learning specialist; Erica Gervais, positive behavior interventions & support specialist; Dr. Connie Honsinger, trauma informed care specialist; and Jeanean Phelps, restorative practices specialist, Chesterfield County (VA) Public Schools

“We resolve to continue supporting the growth of the whole child by providing increasingly intensive supports to elementary students and staff through a multi-tiered system integrating PBIS, Trauma-Informed Practices, and SEL. Frequent analysis of school data (DESSA, discipline, attendance, academic) will be used to identify needs and measure the impact of our approach.

“At the elementary level, we resolve to develop a plan for supporting student needs at advanced tiers of intervention using an SEL/restorative lens.

“We resolve to develop a plan to integrate PBIS, TIC, SEL, and RP at the middle school level with a specific emphasis on the determination of impact and using data to identify needed supports for students within a multi-tiered system of support.

“We resolve to create clearly defined guidance for elementary and secondary schools to determine their readiness to support SEL curriculum within a multi-tiered system of support.”

Deliver anywhere/anytime learning 
Bill Towns, technology director, Crocker (MO) R-2 School District

“My resolutions are to finish deployment of Chromebooks to every classroom in the district and to upgrade our wireless quality of service throughout the district.”

About the Author:

Ellen Ullman is editorial director, content services, for eSchool Media.


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