The pilot of the private jet of the wealthy South African Gupta family is being charged R80,000 for landing at the Waterkloof Airforce Base without a foreign operator permit. Apparently, he is was in the process of acquiring one. The plane was carrying the guests for the wedding of Vega Gupta and Aakash Jahajgarhia and was found to be in proper working order in every way except for missing the permit. Five high ranking officials have been suspended for the unauthorized landing. 

The Guptas own the New Age Newspaper and Sahara computers. 

When the Culture of Openness Fails

ATC -

“Hi, honey,” I asked my daughter on Thursday when I arrived at home, “how was school?”

“Well, Dad,” she started, “all my confidential information has been stolen.

“What?!?” I sat down, a bit stunned that now, every member of my family—except my son—has had their confidential information compromised. As much as I believe in openness, I can’t believe how often unencrypted data finds its way into the hands of thieves, especially with identity theft so high.

“Yeah, one of the teachers at my school had information for 1,253 students on an external USB hard drive. He left the hard drive in his car and it was broken into.” One of the key points in the news article is a quote attributed to an  administrator that implies, because the school is under-staffed, that it’s OK to let staff take unencrypted data home to work.
Garcia said the teacher has been reprimanded but added that NESA has a small staff and the teachers, who are busy with instruction during the day, often have to take work home with them. Read more: http://www.mysanantonio.com/news/education/article/Burglar-took-student-data-3512487.php#ixzz1tIGFRiJC Furthermore, a valid criticism may be that the school district only advised parents to review their bank accounts, credit cards, etc. to check for suspicious activity. In the past, other school districts haven’t considered that an acceptable response to data theft. According to some, the school district (or any offending agency) should pay for Equifax and similar organizations to monitor credit accounts, providing periodic updates to students (many of them just starting college) and their parents about suspicious activity.

You know, as I reflect on this information, it occurs to me that the District in question has joined the Texas Teacher Retirement System (TRS), the Texas Comptroller in failing to properly encrypt confidential data for public school staff and students. Consider that my 82-year old mother (a retired educator of over 36 years), my wife (a public school educator), and now, my daughter, and I have ALL had our data stolen due to lack of encrypted data.

The problem, obviously, is that the folks in question who deal with confidential data in public schools are encrypting…maybe it’s just not a priority, and it should be. And, we only hear about the unencrypted data breaches because, as I recall,_ those with encrypted data that is stolen do not have to report it._

LifeHacker.com recently shared their response to the question, Do you really need to encrypt every file on your computer? A better question might be, _Do you really need to encrypt every file on your portable media?_ Obviously in the case of the various organization staff members, the answer is a resounding YES.

Here’s my comment that I left on the LifeHacker site…why don’t you give AESCrypt a chance and encrypt every file you save to a portable drive? It’s easy to unencrypt, encrypt, etc.
Howdy! I would like to suggest another alternative—instead of using TrueCrypt (great solution)—consider encrypting individual files (or zips of files, if you prefer) using the free, open source, cross-platform solution, AESCrypt.com. It’s an excellent tool right-click for Windows, and command line for Linux and Mac. Here’s more info on it: [www.mguhlin.org]I really wish school districts would pay more attention to this kind of advice that you offer. Just yesterday, I found out that over 1000 students’ confidential data had been left unencrypted on an external USB hard drive. If that data had been encrypted, the school district wouldn’t have to endure having to pay for credit protection for students, their families, and the public embarrassment! How are you protecting confidential documents in the context of K-12 public schools?

http://dlvr.it/1dFP8D

"On another front, funds have been set aside for mental health. Last month Congress approved $2.75-million for a new National Center for Campus Public Safety, which will provide research, training, and best practices to colleges.

Those are important steps in the right direction. But six years after the worst campus attack in American history, are classrooms really less vulnerable?”

Police in South Africa dragged a Mozambican taxi driver behind their car by handcuffs they had attached to the truck. People looked on in horror as the man was dragged to the station, where he later died. This was a harsh reminder of the violence that has exploded in South Africa since the end of apartheid in 1994. Back then, police were mostly white, serving an abusive white government that gave privilege to 20% of the South African population. Now the police are mostly black and work for a democratic government, but the violence has not desisted. Police are taught to be tough, and that is causing outrage in the citizens.

Unfortunately, the news on this Valentine’s Day is rather grim. Oscar Pistorius, whom many may remember from the London Olympics as the double amputee who ran alongside able-bodied athletes on the track, has been charged for the murder of his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp. She was found this morning, shot four times, at Pistorius’ house. The verdict remains to be seen, but the original thought that this was an accident of Pistorius thinking she was an intruder has been pushed aside. To many, that theory was just a reminder that South Africa continues to be a dangerous country. Almost everyone is armed in self-defense; one man called the shooting “a particularly South African mistake,” reminding us all of the violence that stills plagues the healing country.

As you may know, South Africa has the largest AIDS epidemic in the world. These images are extremely powerful reminders of what HIV/AIDS has done and continues to do to families around the world. The cycle is hard to break; it requires an understanding of the disease, often best provided through a good education. These grandmothers are trying, but it is difficult. Remember that indirectly, SSASF is breaking this cycle. As people learn about how HIV/AIDS is caused and can be treated, the epidemic will slow. But that all starts with education.

P.S. The Global Health Initiative project done by SSASF students (Kiara, Ariana, Max, and Caitlin) also addressed the issue of AIDS in South Africa. I’ll post the link to their video soon.

The Bus is Leaving - Saying Goodbye to Current Work Place

ATC -

Please notice the zombie in the middle panel…more on that later!

Thursday (04/26/2012) is my last day in the San Antonio ISD as their Director of Instructional Technology & Learning Services (ITLS). I began in June, 2002 and I have accepted a position with the East Central ISD as their Director of Technology, where I will start on April 30, 2012.

As you might imagine, I was delighted to receive this work of art (above) from my team earlier this week. Created by Molly Valdez (Virtual Learning Coordinator) and designed by all my team—notice the signatures—you can see what they imagine what my life will be like in my new workplace! What a laugh to get to the last panel!
Note: Although my disclaimer at the bottom of every blog post shares that what I write in this blog doesn’t reflect the opinions of my employer(s), I also practice a “Don’t write about work” policy except when it’s to highlight awesome stuff. Today, I’m sorta breaking that rule to share what some of you already know—I’m leaving San Antonio ISD after almost 10 years of service (June 3, 2012 would have been my 10 year marker!). It’s hard to believe I’ll be stepping out of my role as Director of Instructional Technology for the San Antonio ISD, and transitioning to a new role as Director of Technology for the East Central ISD!! When I think of everything I’ve accomplished in the San Antonio ISD, I immediately realize that it was impossible without an incredible team of folks, some of them who have passed away, retired, moved on to bigger and better things, or remain offering service to the SAISD community of educators.

Left to Right: Molly V., Tonya M., somebody walking by, Claude A., Josie Salas and
thanks to teammates
who couldn’t be included, like Diana Benner, Sue Harris, Tamara Holcomb, Laura Lopez, Sylvia Martinez,
Greg Rodriguez, Larry Stegall, and Curt Zaumeyer (deceased) who have moved on to other positions or
passed away.

I also couldn’t have done anything without a wonderfully supportive supervisor, Patricia Holub:


…and wonderful friends like Carol Frausto (Director of Advanced Academic Services) and many others:


When I first arrived in SAISD, I had a list of projects to implement and I tried to do them all before the end of the first 6 months (ok, 2 months). As far as I was concerned, “The bus was leaving and you better get on it!” (no, I didn’t know about Jim Collins at the time). As an educator, I’ve always believed that the people on the bus, in the classroom, on your team ARE the right people…you just need to help them align their strengths with the needs of the organization. What a phenomenal change in leadership style after learning how important it is to empower others to achieve greatness, and less about your ideas and projects.

Since that time, I’ve had wonderful opportunities to work with talented team members, such as Tonya Mills who presented me with this graphic design work…you have to appreciate our sense of humor as we anticipate the zombie apocalypse foretold in the chronicles of The Walking Dead:

 


From the Technology Department card….



Below are some of the kind words principals have emailed:

* Good Luck Miguel, you were TOPS in my book!
* Thank you for your dedication and innovative programs. Your continuous support on an individual bases has been well acknowledge by me and my colleagues .We will miss you and wish you the best on your new position.
* It has been a pleasure working with you. It is with mixed feeling that I say “good bye”, I  am so sad to have you leave, but happy that you have a new adventure beginning
* _Congratulations are in order for your promotion. You’ve done a great job at SAISD and our students will benefit from the technological advances you’ve helped create. Best of Luck to you at East Central._
* _You will greatly be missed.  I enjoyed working with you and your support for our campus was outstanding.  Every time I called, you were readily and available to address our needs and for that I am very grateful to you.  Once again, best of luck to you. _
* Congratulations! Thank you for your support!
* Best of luck, sir!  You will be sorely missed.
* Best wishes in  your new position, Miguel! THANK YOU for always helping me and my staff when we needed help. Your efforts are greatly appreciated!
* We will miss you Miguel.  Best wishes to you in your new position and Congratulations.  I wish you the BEST!!!
* Congratulations! We will miss you. Best of luck to you.
* Best wishes, you’ve always been very helpful to me.
* Miguel, I will miss you and thanks for your help.

A quick shout-out: I am also grateful to Josie Salas’ daughter-in-law, _Valerie_. She was kind enough to bake some awesome “upside down” cake (Josie flipped the cake container on her way into work, so we’re calling it “Angry Cake” by way of saying she was protesting) and brownies:

This completely blew my diet for today out of the water! Grr…

Here’s Josie looking angry, a prerequisite for angry cake (I really had to push her on this):


Thanks to all for your wonderful emails, gifts, and everything else! In truth, the gift of yourselves and what you have taught me is sufficient in itself.

And, finally, looking forward to my time in East Central ISD:

That’s me at the ECISD Board Meeting being introduced with  my family!

—-
Get Blog Updates via Email! Enter your email address:
Delivered by FeedBurner

Subscribe to _Around the Corner-MGuhlin.org_
—-


Visit the Texas for Technology Enhanced Education
—-
Everything posted on Miguel Guhlin’s blogs/wikis are his personal opinion and do not necessarily represent the views of his employer(s) or its clients. Read Full Disclosure

http://dlvr.it/1dFP7b
When the Culture of Openness Fails

“Hi, honey,” I asked my daughter on Thursday when I arrived at home, “how was school?”

“Well, Dad,” she started, “all my confidential information has been stolen.

“What?!?” I sat down, a bit stunned that now, every member of my family—except my son—has had their confidential information compromised. As much as I believe in openness, I can’t believe how often unencrypted data finds its way into the hands of thieves, especially with identity theft so high.

“Yeah, one of the teachers at my school had information for 1,253 students on an external USB hard drive. He left the hard drive in his car and it was broken into.” One of the key points in the news article is a quote attributed to an  administrator that implies, because the school is under-staffed, that it’s OK to let staff take unencrypted data home to work.
Garcia said the teacher has been reprimanded but added that NESA has a small staff and the teachers, who are busy with instruction during the day, often have to take work home with them. Read more: http://www.mysanantonio.com/news/education/article/Burglar-took-student-data-3512487.php#ixzz1tIGFRiJC Furthermore, a valid criticism may be that the school district only advised parents to review their bank accounts, credit cards, etc. to check for suspicious activity. In the past, other school districts haven’t considered that an acceptable response to data theft. According to some, the school district (or any offending agency) should pay for Equifax and similar organizations to monitor credit accounts, providing periodic updates to students (many of them just starting college) and their parents about suspicious activity.

You know, as I reflect on this information, it occurs to me that the District in question has joined the Texas Teacher Retirement System (TRS), the Texas Comptroller in failing to properly encrypt confidential data for public school staff and students. Consider that my 82-year old mother (a retired educator of over 36 years), my wife (a public school educator), and now, my daughter, and I have ALL had our data stolen due to lack of encrypted data.

The problem, obviously, is that the folks in question who deal with confidential data in public schools are encrypting…maybe it’s just not a priority, and it should be. And, we only hear about the unencrypted data breaches because, as I recall,_ those with encrypted data that is stolen do not have to report it._

LifeHacker.com recently shared their response to the question, Do you really need to encrypt every file on your computer? A better question might be, _Do you really need to encrypt every file on your portable media?_ Obviously in the case of the various organization staff members, the answer is a resounding YES.

Here’s my comment that I left on the LifeHacker site…why don’t you give AESCrypt a chance and encrypt every file you save to a portable drive? It’s easy to unencrypt, encrypt, etc.
Howdy! I would like to suggest another alternative—instead of using TrueCrypt (great solution)—consider encrypting individual files (or zips of files, if you prefer) using the free, open source, cross-platform solution, AESCrypt.com. It’s an excellent tool right-click for Windows, and command line for Linux and Mac. Here’s more info on it: [www.mguhlin.org]I really wish school districts would pay more attention to this kind of advice that you offer. Just yesterday, I found out that over 1000 students’ confidential data had been left unencrypted on an external USB hard drive. If that data had been encrypted, the school district wouldn’t have to endure having to pay for credit protection for students, their families, and the public embarrassment! How are you protecting confidential documents in the context of K-12 public schools?

http://dlvr.it/1W4B94
When the Culture of Openness Fails @neisd

“Hi, honey,” I asked my daughter on Thursday when I arrived at home, “how was school?”

"Well, Dad," she started, "all my confidential information has been stolen.

"What?!?" I sat down, a bit stunned that now, every member of my family—except my son—has had their confidential information compromised. As much as I believe in openness, I can’t believe how often unencrypted data finds its way into the hands of thieves, especially with identity theft so high.

"Yeah, one of the teachers at the NorthEast School of the Arts (NorthEast ISD’s NESA Program, which was in danger of being shut down last year) had information for 1,253 students on an external USB hard drive. He left the hard drive in his car and it was broken into.” One of the key points in the news article is a quote attributed to an NEISD administrator that implies, because teachers NESA is under-staffed, that it’s OK to let staff take unencrypted data home to work.

Garcia said the teacher has been reprimanded but added that NESA has a small staff and the teachers, who are busy with instruction during the day, often have to take work home with them.

Read more: http://www.mysanantonio.com/news/education/article/Burglar-took-student-data-3512487.php#ixzz1tIGFRiJCFurthermore, a valid criticism is that the school district only advised parents to review their bank accounts, credit cards, etc. to check for suspicious activity. When is that an acceptable response to data theft? The school district should pay for Equifax and their ilk to monitor credit accounts, providing periodic updates to students (many of them just starting college) and their parents about suspicious activity.

You know, as I reflect on this information, it occurs to me that the NorthEast ISD has joined the Texas Teacher Retirement System (TRS), the Texas Comptroller in failing to properly encrypt confidential data for public school staff and students. Consider that my 82-year old mother (a retired educator of over 36 years), my wife (a public school educator), and now, my daughter, and I have ALL had our data stolen.

The problem, obviously, is that no one who deals with confidential data in public schools is encrypting…maybe it’s just not a priority, and it should be.

LifeHacker.com recently shared their response to the question, Do you really need to encrypt every file on your computer? A better question might be, _Do you really need to encrypt every file on your portable media?_ Obviously in the case of the NESA teacher from NorthEast ISD, the answer is a resounding YES.

Here’s my comment that I left on the LifeHacker site…why don’t you give AESCrypt a chance and encrypt every file you save to a portable drive? It’s easy to unencrypt, encrypt, etc.

Howdy! I would like to suggest another alternative—instead of using TrueCrypt (great solution)—consider encrypting individual files (or zips of files, if you prefer) using the free, open source, cross-platform solution, AESCrypt.com. It’s an excellent tool right-click for Windows, and command line for Linux and Mac. Here’s more info on it: [www.mguhlin.org]I really wish school districts would pay more attention to this kind of advice that you offer. Just yesterday, I found out that over 1000 students’ confidential data had been left unencrypted on an external USB hard drive. If that data had been encrypted, the school district wouldn’t have to endure having to pay for credit protection for students, their families, and the public embarrassment!
How are you protecting confidential documents in the context of K-12 public schools?

http://dlvr.it/1VBrYJ
The Bus is Leaving - Saying Goodbye to Current Work Place

Please notice the zombie in the middle panel…more on that later!

Thursday (04/26/2012) is my last day in the San Antonio ISD as their Director of Instructional Technology & Learning Services (ITLS). I began in June, 2002 and I have accepted a position with the East Central ISD as their Director of Technology, where I will start on April 30, 2012.

As you might imagine, I was delighted to receive this work of art (above) from my team earlier this week. Created by Molly Valdez (Virtual Learning Coordinator) and designed by all my team—notice the signatures—you can see what they imagine what my life will be like in my new workplace! What a laugh to get to the last panel!
Note: Although my disclaimer at the bottom of every blog post shares that what I write in this blog doesn’t reflect the opinions of my employer(s), I also practice a “Don’t write about work” policy except when it’s to highlight awesome stuff. Today, I’m sorta breaking that rule to share what some of you already know—I’m leaving San Antonio ISD after almost 10 years of service (June 3, 2012 would have been my 10 year marker!). It’s hard to believe I’ll be stepping out of my role as Director of Instructional Technology for the San Antonio ISD, and transitioning to a new role as Director of Technology for the East Central ISD!! When I think of everything I’ve accomplished in the San Antonio ISD, I immediately realize that it was impossible without an incredible team of folks, some of them who have passed away, retired, moved on to bigger and better things, or remain offering service to the SAISD community of educators.

Left to Right: Molly V., Tonya M., somebody walking by, Claude A., Josie Salas and
thanks to teammates
who couldn’t be included, like Diana Benner, Sue Harris, Tamara Holcomb, Laura Lopez, Sylvia Martinez,
Greg Rodriguez, Larry Stegall, and Curt Zaumeyer (deceased) who have moved on to other positions or
passed away.

I also couldn’t have done anything without a wonderfully supportive supervisor, Patricia Holub:


…and wonderful friends like Carol Frausto (Director of Advanced Academic Services) and many others:


When I first arrived in SAISD, I had a list of projects to implement and I tried to do them all before the end of the first 6 months (ok, 2 months). As far as I was concerned, “The bus was leaving and you better get on it!” (no, I didn’t know about Jim Collins at the time). As an educator, I’ve always believed that the people on the bus, in the classroom, on your team ARE the right people…you just need to help them align their strengths with the needs of the organization. What a phenomenal change in leadership style after learning how important it is to empower others to achieve greatness, and less about your ideas and projects.

Since that time, I’ve had wonderful opportunities to work with talented team members, such as Tonya Mills who presented me with this graphic design work…you have to appreciate our sense of humor as we anticipate the zombie apocalypse foretold in the chronicles of The Walking Dead:

 


From the Technology Department card….



Below are some of the kind words principals have emailed:

* Good Luck Miguel, you were TOPS in my book!
* Thank you for your dedication and innovative programs. Your continuous support on an individual bases has been well acknowledge by me and my colleagues .We will miss you and wish you the best on your new position.
* It has been a pleasure working with you. It is with mixed feeling that I say “good bye”, I  am so sad to have you leave, but happy that you have a new adventure beginning
* _Congratulations are in order for your promotion. You’ve done a great job at SAISD and our students will benefit from the technological advances you’ve helped create. Best of Luck to you at East Central._
* _You will greatly be missed.  I enjoyed working with you and your support for our campus was outstanding.  Every time I called, you were readily and available to address our needs and for that I am very grateful to you.  Once again, best of luck to you. _
* Congratulations! Thank you for your support!
* Best of luck, sir!  You will be sorely missed.
* Best wishes in  your new position, Miguel! THANK YOU for always helping me and my staff when we needed help. Your efforts are greatly appreciated!
* We will miss you Miguel.  Best wishes to you in your new position and Congratulations.  I wish you the BEST!!!
* Congratulations! We will miss you. Best of luck to you.
* Best wishes, you’ve always been very helpful to me.
* Miguel, I will miss you and thanks for your help.

A quick shout-out: I am also grateful to Josie Salas’ daughter-in-law, _Valerie_. She was kind enough to bake some awesome “upside down” cake (Josie flipped the cake container on her way into work, so we’re calling it “Angry Cake” by way of saying she was protesting) and brownies:

This completely blew my diet for today out of the water! Grr…

Here’s Josie looking angry, a prerequisite for angry cake (I really had to push her on this):


Thanks to all for your wonderful emails, gifts, and everything else! In truth, the gift of yourselves and what you have taught me is sufficient in itself.

—-
Get Blog Updates via Email! Enter your email address:
Delivered by FeedBurner

Subscribe to _Around the Corner-MGuhlin.org_
—-


Visit the Texas for Technology Enhanced Education
—-
Everything posted on Miguel Guhlin’s blogs/wikis are his personal opinion and do not necessarily represent the views of his employer(s) or its clients. Read Full Disclosure

http://dlvr.it/1TfdVW
Introducing the New TA:TEKS @timholt2007 #tateks

An informative, 20 minute video on the new TA:TEKS from El Paso ISD’s Tim Holt…nice job!

My favorite part appears 8 minutes and 50 seconds in….

—-
Get Blog Updates via Email! Enter your email address:
Delivered by FeedBurner

Subscribe to _Around the Corner-MGuhlin.org_
—-


Visit the Texas for Technology Enhanced Education
—-
Everything posted on Miguel Guhlin’s blogs/wikis are his personal opinion and do not necessarily represent the views of his employer(s) or its clients. Read Full Disclosure

http://dlvr.it/1M1sJp
Sea World - Free 2012 Season Passes for #Teachers .@tcea

Watch the video

At a time when teachers are harried, beleaguered on every side by politicians, not unlike orcas after a sperm whale calf, _Sea World_ _San Antonio_ once again affirms the work of Texas educators:
SeaWorld San Antonio welcomes Texas teachers!  SeaWorld San Antonio is offering Texas credentialed teachers a FREE 2012 Fun Card. Come play all year!  Registration ends June 30, 2012. Complete your registration at the link below and bring your 2012 Fun Card eVoucher and all of the required credentials to Guest Services on the date of your visit. Redemption of your Fun Card must take place by August 31, 2012.Required credentials:

* Copy of Texas Teacher certification
* Copy of paystub within the last 30 days
* Valid Texas I.D.
* eVoucher 

Click here to register for your FREE Fun Card!  *This offer does not apply to Student Teachers, Homeschool Teachers, School Nurses or custodial Staff. This offer applies only to active Certified Texas School teachers including Probationary Status Teachers and Teacher’s Aides Level I, II & III.  Teachers must be currently teaching grades K through 12 in a public or private school institution and be verifiable through the TEA website as a certified teacher. More information available online at  http://seaworldparks.com/seaworld-sanantonio/teacher-appreciation

—-
Get Blog Updates via Email! Enter your email address:
Delivered by FeedBurner

Subscribe to _Around the Corner-MGuhlin.org_
—-


Visit the Texas for Technology Enhanced Education
—-
Everything posted on Miguel Guhlin’s blogs/wikis are his personal opinion and do not necessarily represent the views of his employer(s) or its clients. Read Full Disclosure

http://dlvr.it/1LLnk5
The Secret to Happiness - Sharing My Good News

Ever achieve a goal after years of yearning? Yesterday afternoon, a dream/goal came true for me! I was offered a position as Director of Technology (a.k.a. CTO) for a wonderful school district (9K students) in the San Antonio, Texas area!!! 
Over 15 years ago, I decided I wanted to be a Technology Director some day. Who was that person who could actualize what technologies teachers and students would have access to? Who was that person who could delve into the mysteries of servers and instruction?
I won’t wax rhapsodic just yet about the new job—after all, I’m not due to start for another month or two—but I am absolutely ecstatic! In fact, I can’t describe how many times a smile crossed my face today.
Of course, this means I’ll be leaving a position I’ve been Director of Instructional Technology for almost 10 years (as of 06/03/2012). It’s a challenge since I have a FANTASTIC team that I’m leaving, and I get choked up every time I think that in a few months, they won’t be the folks I look to. That said, I also know that an equally phenomenal team is waiting, and that our synergy will be transformative.
For now, though, it is a time to pause, look back, and reflect on the road taken, before looking forward again. I took a moment to reflect on some of the major accomplishments since I took the position on in 2002, and it’s simply amazing.
Allow me to reminisce a bit…. Since June 3, 2002, I have had the opportunity to serve my current employer as Director of Instructional Technology and Learning Services (ITLS). The experience has been professionally rewarding and I am truly grateful for the learning experiences, the teaming enjoyed with other staff at campuses and departments.   When I first arrived, the District had profound needs. With a team of four professional staff members—which I later grew to seven, then shrunk down to three after Spring, 2011 budget cuts—and one fantastic secretary, the Office of Instructional Technology Services’ services and advocacy met the needs of District students and staff with these programs:

* District Strategic Planning and Assessment (e.g. STaR Chart, LOTI, TAGLIT) of technology programs that impact Teaching & Learning, Administrative Support Services, and Educator Preparation. The Texas ePlan is primarily composed of Instructional Technology programs.

* Introduction of web-based access to technology professional learning materials for staff, students, and parents. This predated the plethora of free resources available now!

* Campus Technology Representatives (CTR) initiative that facilitated a reciprocal dialogue with campuses about technology and instruction.

* Online registration and management of professional development that had previously been paper-based, not allowing for centralized tracking and reporting of learning opportunities for staff. In fact, I created the first system for use in the District, although it has now been replaced by a more complex system.

* Electronic Gradebook and Attendance Tracking System (GATS) at a time when teachers still employed paper gradebooks.

* A Content Management System for web-site maintenance (e.g. Campus/Department Web Coordinators Program). 

* Technology Integration Lead Teacher (TILT) Program that impacted over 100 educators (8 cohorts of 20 to 30 teachers and/or principals)  in the District, providing sustained professional development in the area of enhancing instruction through the strategic application of technology.

* Online Employee Appraisal System (EASy) was championed by the Office of Instructional technology Services.

* Blended and 100% online learning opportunities for K-12 and adult learners through the setup of Moodle, a free, open source course management system that, again, saved the District money and impacting thousands of K-12 students as well as adult learners.

* Many more initiatives such as the Technology Competency Certification Plan (TCCP), Campus Administrator Technology Leadership, Data-Driven Administrator Seminars (DDAS), Technology Assessment Literacy Institute, and Handheld Reading Initiative and others too numerous to list.

These programs and initiatives would not have been possible without the collaborative contributions of key staff members—some whom already have resigned and moved on, retired, or passed away—including my supervisor. I am appreciative to them, as well as to everyone I had the opportunity to work with in my current school district, especially my current team of “incredibles.”  
Thank you!
While it’s easy to measure accomplishment in a list of actions taken, there are different ways to gauge success. Two other ways include 

* Measuring the impact on district students and staff, how the work of a small team leveraged technology to bring about sweeping changes. 
* Asking myself what are some of the valuable lessons I learned along the way.

Those valuable lessons are captured in multiple blog entries blended into the over 10,000 I’ve written since I began blogging many years ago. But the most important lesson comes to me from a story I heard when I was 18 years old. I’m not sure of the origin of the story, or even if my memory is accurate, but the lesson is as powerful for me today as it was then. The Secret to Happiness Once upon a time, a man stood crying alone on the rooftop of his house. He was unhappy, and he cried out, “I just want to be happy.” An angel appeared to him, and offered to grant him 3 wishes over the course of his life. “Grant my wish, angel!” the man begged.  He was mourning the fact that the roof he stood upon was of a house he did not own, that his creditors beat upon his door and his wife lived in fear of furniture and vehicles being seized. The first wish the man asked for was wealth.   For a time, he was happy but then his wife fell ill and no amount of money could save her. As he wept again at her plight, the angel appeared again and offered to grant him a wish. The man wished for health, but in spite of his health and family’s being improved, over time, he realized that this did not make him happy. He reflected long and hard on this, even writing a few blog entries, sending out a few tweets, and checking with his PLN.  Finally, one night as he suffered weariness of spirit in spite of riches, family, and perfect health, the angel appeared to him to grant his final wish, present at his unbidden request. “Angel,” the old man asked, “grant me my wish…teach me to be grateful for all that has happened and will happen in my life.” The angel made it so.  At last, the man achieved happiness. No matter the experience, large or small, whether it kicked me in the teeth or made me feel fantastic, I’m grateful for it.

Image Source: http://goo.gl/1RNH2

—-
Get Blog Updates via Email! Enter your email address:
Delivered by FeedBurner

Subscribe to _Around the Corner-MGuhlin.org_
—-


Visit the Texas for Technology Enhanced Education
—-
Everything posted on Miguel Guhlin’s blogs/wikis are his personal opinion and do not necessarily represent the views of his employer(s) or its clients. Read Full Disclosure

http://dlvr.it/1Hv9DT
Text
Photo
Quote
Link
Chat
Audio
Video