For Rick Cave, Director of Technology at West Windsor-Plainsboro Regional School District in New Jersey, the biggest challenge to pivoting during the pandemic wasn’t the platforms, but the people.
In this conversation with eSchool News, Rick talks about how the changing behaviors of everyone—students, teachers, and parents—made remote and now hybrid learning work–and what aspects should remain once the crisis has passed.
The below has been edited for clarity.
eSN: What have been the most significant changes to your district as a result of the pandemic?
RC: I think the biggest factor the pandemic has really brought forward is that of independent student choice and student-centered instruction. We’ve always tried to build around that idea but, I’ll be honest, it’s not something everybody always embraces. Unfortunately, when you walk into a lot of classrooms, you still see very, very traditional instruction—teachers standing in front of the classrooms. What was interesting in this environment is teachers learned pretty quickly that lecturing to a Zoom screen is really ineffective. So there became that awareness that, now, maybe we need to do something more. Maybe we can’t just be, “I’m going to start pumping out this information and you have to kind of digest it all.”