June 28, 2012

George Couros: Why School Administrators Should Embrace the Social Web

Categories: Critical Perspectives, Digital Citizenship
shot overview of students sitting in working on laptops

By encouraging administrators to become learner-leaders, to use social media to connect with each other, share best practices and experiment, Canadian school principal George Couros is leading by example, exhortation, and instigation the people who are supposed to be leading our schools into the future. He created and regularly contributes to the website that serves as an online gathering place especially for school principals, Connected Principals, and has blogged in detail about why and how school administrators should be using social media in practical ways in their schools — linking in this one compendium post to a dozen of his specific blog posts. In a post titled “My Digital Footprint,” Couros details how he uses Posterous, Twitter, Diigo, Facebook, blogs, Flickr, YouTube, and Prezi (for those who want to see what George is bookmarking, check out his Diigo Public Library. In this video, I talked with Couros about why administrators should embrace the internet instead of fearing it, and about several of the projects he and other connected principals have been cooking up. Here are a couple of excerpts but George is doing fascinating work and you’ll want to check out the full interview below:

Many schools we see block Twitter and Facebook. And what they do is they actually encourage kids to use their own device for unfiltered access. When [students] come into our school districts and they have wi-fi enabled on their phones, they’re actually having a filtered version and we’re ensuring their safety.

The more we can get people involved in what’s happening in the classroom and the learning, the better students are going to do. And that’s a proven fact. Number one impact on student learning is parent reinforcing the learning happening at school. So if we can open that window through blogging, Twitter, Facebook — that’s what we want to do.

Banner image credit: superkimbo http://www.flickr.com/photos/superkimbo/3940289579/