Student Technology Assistant Programs.Report as inadecuate

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Schools face significant challenges in implementing computing technology within their curriculum. When technology support falters, the integrity of a school district's entire technology program is at risk. Teachers who have invested time to develop lesson plans using technology, especially those who are still newcomers, are less likely to continue to invest their energies if they cannot count on their computers to be up and running. When parents ask their children how computers are used in the classroom, or when parents visit the classroom, they may discern little or no technology use. These lapses may diminish the community support that is necessary for continuation or expansion of the district's technology program. The purpose of this article is to describe how Student Technology Assistant (STA) programs can help schools, in particular rural school districts, solve some of these problems. One danger in implementing a STAA program is that the educational needs of the students may become lost in the shuffle of administering the program. Before turning to specific programs, this paper examines this danger more closely. Then, a definition of a successful STA program is given. First steps in establishing such a program are discussed, operational considerations are identified, and finally, six successful models are examined. (Contains 26 references.) (AEF)

Descriptors: Computer Uses in Education, Educational Technology, Elementary Secondary Education, Program Effectiveness, Program Implementation, Rural Education, Technology Integration, Technology Planning

Author: Van Eck, Rick; Marvin, Eric; Burr-McNeal, Blake; Jones, Marshall; Lowther, Deborah


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