The Most Appealing Ideas Expressed by the Author
In Digital Leadership: Changing Paradigms for Changing Times, Eric Sheninger approaches the structure and operation of a school from the management perspective. As a result, the author provides a variety of interesting ideas as to how school structures can be re-shaped in order to become more productive and relevant to the contemporary lives of students and teachers. The author emphasizes that the culture of the contemporary schools needs to become more transparent and engaging. As a result, Sheninger proposes leveraging the existing and available resources to achieve a higher level of effectiveness in schools’ performance.
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One of the ideas expressed in this book that I found interesting was the meaning of ubiquitous connectivity and the need for the integration of technologies in education. In reality, it took rather long for the field of education to start embracing the obvious educational benefits that digital and web technologies have to offer. As a result, Sheninger noted that now the time has come for many new approaches and changes that would make technologies an essential part of the modern educational process.
Specifically, the author expressed excitement about the popularity of digital devices that allows teachers to implement the BYOD practice that stands for “bring your own device.” Specifically, the contemporary schools may not need a heavy investment in equipment because almost every student today has some kind of a digital device that could be brought to school for learning based on a shared application or software.
Practically, in terms of digital leadership, the author says that schools had waited through the stage when technologies were imperfect and limited. Now, they represent an invaluable and ready to use resource that requires proper organization in order to become fully integrated into the learning process.
The Implications of The Ideas in the Book for Me as an Educator
The book by Sheninger provides a thorough and detailed approach to the operation of schools in contemporary times. Overall, the wide range of topics presented in this book, as well as the variety of issues discussed, can feel intimidating to a reader who is a simple school teacher. The author uses the global perspective on education in general and raises diverse subjects that cover some of the most important and pressing problems in modern education. Practically, this approach makes the book relevant to any type of educator. The book contains ideas that could serve as a call for action of the educators willing to advocate for themselves, their communities, workplaces, or students.
One of the primary implications of the ideas in this book is that educators who read it should take a moment to think critically about their practice and the environment in which they work on a daily basis. Sheninger makes leadership the major focus of this book, thus implying that his readers should be prepared to assume leadership roles and responsibilities in order to facilitate change. As one of a leader’s roles is to evaluate and assess situations in order to make decisions, the author’s ideas imply that having read the book, educators need to take a look at their workplaces. The purpose of such evaluation is the search for existing and potential challenges that can be addressed with the help of an individual or collective effort.
The Ideas That I Challenge
In his book, Sheninger explored the ways in which the efficiency of modern schools could be improved. One of the major resources for the implementation of change for the better, according to the author, is the integration of digital technologies. I fully agree that the technologies represent a powerful and valuable resource for educators of all specializations. However, it is important to remember that the integration is not equally available in all educational facilities.
While in schools with a higher level of funding, the appropriate equipment can be purchased or brought to school by the students. At the same time, there are still schools without any funds that could be spent on the integration of technologies and where the students come from low-income families and may not have devices available for e-learning.
In that way, funding plays a very significant role in the possibility of changes described in the book by Sheninger. One of the benefits of the book is that the author makes it clear for the readers what problems there are in their workplaces and facilities and what could be done in order to resolve them. However, I believe that many of the potential change strategies could be disabled by the lack of appropriate funding.
It could be helpful if some strategies and plans could be put in place for the purpose of making schools relevant to the students’ lives and for the creation of an engaging and motivational learning process that would not rely on technologies. This is important because, regardless of the ubiquitous connectivity, many schools still cannot provide the resources needed for successful integration.