On the heels of 1.1 million students and 80,000 teachers being transitioned to remote learning, I penned this op-ed piece for The New York Daily News. Here’s how it starts:
The COVID-19 shutdown of New York City public schools, which began Monday, is forcing students and teachers from kindergarten through high school to tackle learning and teaching online, from their homes. Under the best of circumstances, this wouldn’t be easy. But because the city’s Department of Education didn’t prioritize and sufficiently fund the use of instructional technology or online learning in our schools, it’s going to be a lot harder than it needed to be.
I witnessed firsthand how, upon taking office, the de Blasio administration ignored the critical role technology must play in learning and teaching in the 21st century. They disinvested in programs like iLearnNYC, the city’s custom-built portal for online learning. They seldom seriously integrated informational or instructional technologies into their strategic planning. Leadership at DIIT, the Division of Instructional and Informational Technology, had to beg for basic funding. Instructional technology and online learning leaders at the DOE’s central offices were disempowered or relocated to district and borough offices.
For the whole piece, head on over to The New York Daily News.