The Catalyst ROCKITS Bring Technology to All, Part 2
At The Catalyst Schools, The ROCKITS team is comprised of staff members who directly manage the schools’ IT systems as well as a Director of Instructional Technology & Data – LeAnne Wagner. Her critical role is to be the connecting piece between the IT department and the teachers and administrators. Because she has a background in teaching, as well as skills in technology, she is able to connect the two together to bring outstanding results for the Catalyst community, especially during this critical time for technology.
At Catalyst, they know that instructional staff and IT staff will always look at things differently. They have different perspectives, different responsibilities and different methods. The one big thing they have in common, however, is the end goal. That end goal is to make technology available and integral for the process of teaching and learning.
Communication between IT and instructional staff is key to produce an optimal learning setting for scholars. It isn’t conducive to have a long-term IT goal that doesn’t support the academic goals of a school. It also doesn’t make sense to create academic goals without considering how IT will factor into the ability to accomplish that goal. LeAnne is able to participate in both of those discussions and help to merge the two visions into one.
Balancing the needs of the teachers and administrators with the safety and security of the Catalyst infrastructure can be a challenge. She focuses on finding a balance that allows for:
- Scholars: an increase in access to technology and the opportunities it can provide
- Teachers: encouraging innovative and engaging instruction using technology
- Administrators: helping to establish long-term and short-term instructional programs that will accomplish goals and overcome obstacles
Her day can consist of many different opportunities to serve in this capacity. Some of these include:
- Helping a teacher to utilize an instructional tool
- Working on a network-wide solution for streamlining scholar logins to instructional programming
- Working with an administrative leadership team on collecting and analyzing instructional data
- Assisting in creation and implementation of various operational processes and procedures
- Meeting with a group of teachers to identify an instructional tool to accomplish a specific educational goal
- Troubleshooting minor software/hardware issues with teachers, administrators, scholars and parents
She acts as a resource, a sounding board, a tutor, a thought-partner, a leader and a community member in both the educational and IT worlds within the network. Because of her work and the work of her ROCKIT Teammates, 100% of Catalyst scholars have WiFi and a device.