Nov. 11, 2017 - What makes a Jesuit high school “tech-friendly”?
Technology directors, teachers and academic chairs tackled this question last week during a Regional Education Technology Cohort. Leaders and administrators from 14 apostolates of the Jesuits USA Central and Southern (UCS) and USA Midwest (UMI) Provinces gathered Nov. 7-10, 2017 at Monserrat Jesuit Retreat House near Dallas for a conference on education technology.
Education technology is the management of technology within the classroom, such as how and when to use technology to help students succeed.
UCS Province Director of School Support Pete Musso, who participated in the cohort meeting, says education technology is intertwined with the path “to come to know God better by knowing Jesus, and as a result of all this, to see, think and act in new and different ways to affect change at the school level.”
Conference participants collaborated to develop concrete ideas and specific strategies for using technology in schools, all informed by Jesuit spirituality and the Spiritual Exercises. Attendees also spent time in individual reflection and group prayer, centered around living Jesuit spirituality and mission.
The gathering sessions included defining educational technology and professional development and a case study “Tech-Friendly Jesuit High.” Participants heard from a panel about how educational technology is tied to the Jesuit way of proceeding and listened to a keynote address about teenage brain research that helped them better understand the use of technology in Jesuit schools.
Participants traveled to Jesuit College Preparatory School of Dallas for student-led tours. The gathering ended with a day of planning, networking and brainstorming about how to educators can support each other going forward.
Participants left equipped with concrete individual and school team action plans, as well as a sense that they are not alone in the important work they do. The education technology cohort participants also agreed to continue dialogue through the Jesuit Schools Network’s online community page.