ISTE Standards Implementation Evaluation

If you are an administrator or aspire to be an administrator I would like you to consider the ISTE Standards for Administrators and tell me where you believe you excel and where you need to improve. It’s worth thinking about how these standards help you bring technology into your school or if you are looking for an administrative job how knowledge of the standards might help you in an interview.

The ISTE website is quite deep​(, 2019)​; there are a lot of resources behind some links and logins that are very useful. I particularly like the down-loadable information pages and toolkits for all aspects of a school. ISTE offers standards for students, teachers, educational leaders and technology leaders.

It’s a bit challenging to evaluate both the school and my own domain within using the standards above.

We must recognize that in all schools (or any organizations), we have a spectrum of abilities and involvements of staff with technology.

Equity and Citizenship Advocate

Leaders use technology to increase equity, inclusion, and digital citizenship practices. Education Leaders:
a. Ensure all students have skilled teachers who actively use technology to meet student learning needs.
b. Ensure all students have access to the technology and connectivity necessary to participate in authentic and engaging learning opportunities.
c. Model digital citizenship by critically evaluating online resources, engaging in civil discourse online and using digital tools to contribute to positive social change.
d. Cultivate responsible online behaviour, including the safe, ethical and legal use of technology.


I think we do the first and third points well. At our school students from grade seven upwards have a personal laptop (either school-issued or “bring-your-own”) and teachers model ethical behaviour with respect to referencing and legal use.

However, the skill level of the teachers, and indeed the office staff is on a spectrum. The introduction of individual computers over the last 14 years has moved from teacher desktop machines to teacher laptops to a one-to-one program for students in Grade seven and upwards. In many cases, we may as well be carrying around typewriters.

This is a key first step in the further development of technology integration. We need to work on the aspects of a Global Educator here; namely flattening education, promoting global citizenship and anytime anywhere learning.

Visionary Planner

Leaders engage others in establishing a vision, strategic plan and ongoing evaluation cycle for transforming learning with technology. Education Leaders:
a. Engage education stakeholders in developing and adopting a
shared vision for using technology to improve student success,
informed by the learning sciences.
b. Build on the shared vision by collaboratively creating a strategic plan that articulates how technology will be used to enhance learning.
c. Evaluate progress on the strategic plan, make course corrections, measure impact and scale effective approaches for using technology to transform learning.
d. Communicate effectively with stakeholders to gather input on the plan, celebrate successes and engage in a continuous improvement cycle.
e. Share lessons learned, best practices, challenges and the impact of learning with technology with other education leaders who want to learn from this work.


We recently hired a new Director of Learning Technologies, and I hope that we soon find out his vision. The pace of change in educational (or any) technology is so fast that it’s hard for any leader to cascade it down. As discussed in previous posts, the potential time wasted is huge when new technologies are tested for validity and rolled out to a large faculty.

Empowering Leader

Leaders create a culture where teachers and learners are empowered to use technology in innovative ways to enrich teaching and learning.
a. Empower educators to exercise professional agency, build teacher leadership skills and pursue personalized professional learning.
b. Build the confidence and competency of educators to put the
ISTE Standards for Students and Educators into practice.
c. Inspire a culture of innovation and collaboration that allows the time and space to explore and experiment with digital tools.
d. Support educators in using technology to advance learning
that meets the diverse learning, cultural, and social-emotional
needs of individual students.
e. Develop learning assessments that provide a personalized,
actionable view of student progress in real time.


Our school has a Learning Technologies Teacher for about every 400 students and 50 teachers. Most of the time, the LTTs are solving minor technical problems and correcting user mistakes.

I’m not sure if I would agree with the term “empowered” as this indicates a very powerful, thoughtful and intentional program. I would rather use the word “encouraged”

We have a few different platforms that the LTTs are “expert” in and can provide a range of support. We are ready but have not yet engaged with generating consistent approaches to accessing frequent student assessment data.

We are now at a point where we have a lot of tools, but no one teacher is expert in many of them.

Key to the rollout of new technologies or maximising the use of existing technologies is time and pressure. As faculty have different levels of interest and capacity with technology they must be trained and expected to be competent in a variety of technological systems. I can think of lots of people that don’t know the capabilities of the software system to do something as simple as organising a meeting. Currently invitations are sent according to the leaders’ schedules and negotiation follows. If people were simply trained in how to maintain and view calendar data technology could deliver on it’s promise of increased efficiency. Pressure is important, because unless there are expectations and requirements of daily, or at least frequent use there will not be a lot of buy in.

Systems Designer

Leaders build teams and systems to implement, sustain and continually improve the use of technology to support learning.

a. Lead teams to collaboratively establish robust infrastructure and systems needed to implement the strategic plan.
b. Ensure that resources for supporting the effective use of technology for learning are sufficient and scalable to meet future demand.
c. Protect privacy and security by ensuring that students and staff observe effective privacy and data management policies.
d. Establish partnerships that support the strategic vision, achieve learning priorities and improve operations.


Our systems are robust as we have a dedicated team of IT leaders and technicians that maintain and improve the systems.
Our school also has a Data Protection Officer as a result of the recent GDPR laws that have come into effect.

This aspect sounds more like a background infrastructure management and is hard to evaluate from the user end except to say that if this isn’t happening then things gradually fall apart.

Connected Learner

Leaders model and promote continuous professional learning for themselves and others.

a. Set goals to remain current on emerging technologies for learning, innovations in pedagogy and advancements in the learning sciences.
b. Participate regularly in online professional learning networks to collaboratively learn with and mentor other professionals.
c. Use technology to regularly engage in reflective practices that support personal and professional growth.
d. Develop the skills needed to lead and navigate change, advance systems and promote a mindset of continuous improvement for how technology can improve learning.


I also really like the attributes of a global educator, and recognize that I have a ways to go here – the seven degrees of connectedness is a nice summary and I would say I’m at level 2 – Novice.

I recognize that I have not yet substantially begun to develop my personal brand or join or create a PLN. It has always been in the back of my mind and I think my original dislike of Twitter has made a roadblock in this manner. So I have created a Twitter account (@LumsdenEd)and started following various educational outlets. Currently, it acts as a news feed, but I am warming up to do some posts, and maybe even a book review.

Hersheim’s article​(Hersheim, 2018)​ references Ziegenfuss who lays out a very straightforward logic: Have a clear vision, be inclusive with the tech team and then just do it.

  1. Hersheim, J. (2018). Handing over the reins. District Administration, 66.
  2. (2019, May 10). ISTE STANDARDS FOR EDUCATION LEADERS. Retrieved May 10, 2019, from ISTE website:

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