Do any of your schools struggle with managing bandwidth so that videoconferences can happen? Mine do. I was reading Doug Johnson’s blog, and realized that his post Problem or Dilemma may assist with this issue:
[Dilemmas are] conditions that can only be managed, not solved because they involve conflicts in values. Because of individual priorities and “problem frames,” it is impossible to deal with these issues so that everyone gets what she/he desires. So how are these situations best dealt with? Personally, I like using my advisory committee (or a task force) comprised of all stakeholders effected to fully air the issue, suggest actions, and make a recommendation. Does everyone always like the result? No. But everyone knows why it has been made and has had a chance to have had their concerns heard.
Read the full post. How is bandwidth a dilemma? I have schools where they make an announcement (or send an email) for everyone to stay off their computers from 9:00-10:00 or whenever because a videoconference is going on. That’s pretty extreme, and those of you lucky enough to have fiber would never dream of such a situation. But it happens. In another district, due to internal networking, three schools have to stay offline to do a videoconference! Do you think these schools see videoconferencing as something they want to do on a daily or weekly basis? Certainly not! Just enough to meet the requirements of the RUS grant, or just enough to satisfy those teachers interested in using it. Just imagine the feeling about videoconferencing in these buildings! Having a conversation as Doug described is certainly one great way to get everyone involved in the issue.
What other ideas do you have?