ISTE: Five Ways the CTO Role is Changing

The 2016 International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) wrapped up its annual conference last week, and it’s worth taking a look at what its gathering of CTOs and educators think about how changes in today’s schools and technologies are impacting the role of the traditional CTO.

As this article from eSchool News notes, “CTOs in school districts juggle any number of demands relating to IT support, technology integration into classroom instruction, and future district technology plans. But as technology changes, and as the needs of students and teachers change, so does the role of the CTO.”

According to the ISTE, five specific areas where changes are occurring in technology education sound pretty relevant to all CTO roles:

  1. Blended Learning

  2. Open Educational Resources

  3. IT management and instructional leadership

  4. Transitioning from “fixing things” to focusing on instructional goals

  5. What an IT director is expected to provide

We’re pleased to see that most of these points dovetail generally with the messaging themes we thread throughout the 7CTOs blog and our forums. One point that is not touched upon, which we wish they had, is empathy and the necessity to blend technology with common humanity, but perhaps that is more generally expected in an educational setting.

It’s good for CTOs to be aware of what is being taught in colleges and universities today in the technology space, because today’s students are going to be tomorrow’s employees, team members and leaders If you’ve got any thoughts about whether these five points are all on the right track or already pas·sé and need to be revised, we’d like to hear them here.

Have a great (short!) week!