As a long-time principal and administrator, I’ve heard it all. Sometimes teachers miss deadlines, meetings, and trainings because they are busy educating students. The usual truth is that information is not always at their fingertips.
The most common information teachers need to access on a daily basis and in different places are emails, the district website, memos, instructions, documents, forms, the calendar, newsletters, training videos, and meeting agendas. I can truly empathize with my teachers. When I was a teacher, the first memo I received from my principal was about my failure to report to morning hall duty. The (paper) memo was put in my mailbox at the end of the day. By the time I finished my after-school tutoring, the main office where my mailbox was located was already closed.
What can we do as principals to help teachers access information in a faster, convenient, and easy way? Sometimes it’s not information overload that frustrates our teachers; it’s the lack of time and directions to access it. I love problem-solving using creativity and innovation. That’s exactly what I did this summer; I built a mobile app featuring frequently accessed school resources, internal communication channels, as well as some existing popular apps, all in one place for my teachers to problem-solve the question “how can teachers simplify the process of accessing information needed for the job?”
If I can make it easy for my teachers to find as much information as they need in one place, I might be able to help them manage time so they can work better, increase learning and collaboration among colleagues, and most of all, have more time to spend with students.
“The goal is to increase productivity, performance, and efficiency, and ultimately improve teacher job satisfaction.”