Monday, September 5, 2016

Minnetonka Teacher Instructional Technology Coaches

Minnetonka teachers at an instructional technology training
last week led by an Instructional Technology Coach
A key reason for our successful integration of technology in Minnetonka Schools has be due to the support staff we have in place. My position as Director of Instructional Technology & Media Services began in 2003. Starting in 2005, we began allocating additional staff to help with the job of coaching teachers on the meaningful integration of technology. Over the years we have added more teachers as Instructional Technology Coaches. These staff spend anywhere from an hour a day to full time to this role. 

We currently have seven "Tech TOSAs" (Teacher On Special Assignment) for Instructional Technology: we have a full time coach for PreK-5 who travels between buildings, three part time middle school instructional technology coaches (who are 0.4 - 0.8 FTE at two sites), and three part time high school instructional technology coaches (who are 0.4 - 0.8 FTE at our one high school). These teachers remain in their positions for up to four years. I have been fortunate to work with many talented teachers over the past eleven years, and Minnetonka teachers and students have directly benefited from their skills, talent, and expertise. The job description for our Teacher on Special Assignment for Instructional Technology is below:

Job Duties and Responsibilities:
  1. Provide job embedded, before and after school, and extended calendar summer staff development to teachers to support the integration of technology at the individual classroom level as it relates to curriculum, instruction and assessment. 
  2. Assist as needed with the trouble shooting of technology issues related to instructional technology. 
  3. Provide support and professional development with new instructional software and District technology initiatives. 
  4. Collaborate with the Director of Instructional Technology & Media Services, other Tech TOSAs, Teaching and Learning Team, District Technology Department, Principals, Media Specialists, Site Trainers, and Technology Committees to provide the highest level of service and support to teachers. 
  5. Find innovative technology resources that enhance the teaching and learning process. 
  6. Attend and present at local and national technology conferences and events. 
  7. Attend building and District technology related meetings as needed. 
  8. Performs other duties of a similar nature or level.   
Specific Responsibilities:
  1. Willingness to work a flexible yearly schedule, willing to exceed the days in a yearly teacher contract for a stipend, and willingness to work part of August.
  2. Willingness to work a flexible daily/weekly schedule, with possibility of working evenings and/or weekends. 
Training and Experience:
  1. Experienced teacher with successful technology leadership and training responsibilities. 
  2. Demonstrated successful experience working with students and teachers. 
  3. Demonstrated success working with peers or other adults in leadership and/or training roles. 
  4. Past evidence of technology training; documentation creation preferred. 
Knowledge and Skills:
  • Working knowledge of technology hardware and software.
  • In-depth knowledge of iPads and Apple iOS, with evidence of previous teaching and training with iPads experience preferred.
  • In-depth knowledge of Schoology, with evidence of previous Schoology training experience preferred.
  • In-depth knowledge of Google Apps, with evidence of previous Google Apps training experience preferred.
  • In-depth knowledge of SMARTBoards, with evidence of previous SMARTBoard training experience preferred.
  • In-depth knowledge of a variety of other district-wide technologies, with evidence of previous training experience preferred.
  • Understanding of adult learning styles and past history of teaching technology skills to adults.
  • Ability to develop effective and positive working relationships with students, staff, administrators, parents, and the community.
  • Maintain professional composure while dealing with a variety of personalities and situations.  
  • Demonstrated organizational and management abilities.
  • Show initiative and function as a self-starter.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills and interpersonal skills as applied to interaction with coworkers, supervisor, the general public, etc. sufficient to exchange or convey information and to receive work direction.

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