The Horizon Room is a concept born out of the need for a national forum to tackle important issues in education. In this episode of the Horizon Room, your hosts LeiLani Cauthen, CEO of the Learning Counsel and Chris McMurray, Chief Academic Officer of the Learning Counsel, take callers to discuss the very real gap between teaching and available technology.

According to Cauthen, “There are a lot of organizations out there promoting what I would consider fairly trite objectives or goals. And those goals are things like future ready classrooms, and classrooms of the future. Do you think the classroom is going to survive the real digital transition? It's the institution that needs to survive and the institution needs to run itself like an institution rather than a cobbling together of independence. All these independent classrooms, where each one has to do everything? No. Be an institution. You're not a retail chain of stores.

“You need to think like Amazon,” said Cauthen. “And I'm not saying you need to be online all the time because that's what scares people. They think, ‘We're going to go digital, everything's going to be online. I don't want to be an online school.’ No, that's not what we're talking about. The real manifestation of the digital transition is a vision of using your human assets very precisely; using your humanity as your brand that competes with fully online, but don't do it sloppily. It's very sloppy to just run a manufacturing line because of the amount of time wasted in those classrooms when the teacher is not teaching and every head is down reading something; we all see this, we know this goes on. Every head is down watching a video or looking up at a group screen.” That's not teaching. That's babysitting during learning.”

I totally agree,” said McMurray. “The thing that sticks with me though is the part that bridges the knowing and doing gap. We talk to superintendents who nod and say that's exactly what needs to happen. But somewhere between knowing that and making it happen, there's a disconnect. And that's what I'm most interested in because then you're talking about strategy versus tactic. We're talking about all the tactical fixes, all the little things that have been sort of piled up on top of things and the institution hasn't been examined and addressed. I mean, the leader of the organization is going to have to lead that work. That's not going to come up from the grass roots. They can do the little bits and pieces down at the classroom level. Your principals are going to be working their butts off. But until that vision comes from the top and comes collectively with the community of learning it, it won't happen.”

Tune into this very important episode of the Horizon Room, and hear the solutions presented to this very common challenge. The truth is out there and Cauthen, McMurray and their guests make sure that it is delivered to you, so the disconnect between teaching and technology will soon be a faded memory in your district, and you’ll be left with happy educators and high-achieving learners.