Laptops for kids

Saturday, August 26, 2006

Division Level Information Technology Planning

The public school system in the Philippines has divisions, which cover either
  1. all the municipalities (but not the chartered cities) of a province, or
  2. one city
In Cebu, there are 7 divisions, while in Region VII as a whole (which also includes three neighboring provinces on other islands) there are 17 divisions. I have been working with the Cebu Provincial Schools division, which is one of the largest in the country. I understand there are 14,000 employees, mostly teachers, and 300,000 students. I am focused on helping the 207 high schools of that division. Eventually, I hope the experiences we gain can provide a model for deploying IT in basic education all over the country. I hope we can learn what will be needed to successfully roll-out a very large number of OLPC laptops in 2008 or 2009. One thing that needs to be developed is a plan. Divisions already make an annual Division Improvement Plan, just like schools make a School Improvement Plan. At both levels, I am pretty sure there is usually no mention of IT. What would a Division IT Plan, part of a larger Division Improvement Plan, look like?
Part I. Policy and Strategy
A. (review of national policies, which are
   already supportive of integrating ICT)
B. (relate IT to the division Vision and Mission)
C. Strategy, a 4-part agenda
  1. Hardware and Networking - connect 125 schools, ensure that each school has at least 10 PC's.
  2. Change Management
    1. School heads need to provide leadership
    2. Sustainability, including resource mobilization with PTCA and local government
  3. Teacher Training
    1. Formal education
      1. Graduate programs, including distance education
        1. DOST-SEI e-learning for science and math teachers
      2. Linkage with Teacher Education Institutes on Pre-Service Training
    2. In-Service Training
      1. ICT Seminars
      2. model of School-Based Training Program
  4. Integrating into Curriculum and Teaching-Learning Practices
Part II. Capability Building A. Institutional Level: Schools, Division B. Personnel availability C. Competency Standards D. Human Capital Development plans Part III. Quality Assurance A. Performance Indicators B. Data collection activities C. Feedback on quality, external assessments D. Process Improvement Part IV. Execution and Monitoring A. Organizational structures and responsibilities B. Monitoring the deployment and use of computers and network services C. Development and monitoring of School Improvement Plans Part V. Resources A. Budget B. Additional resource mobilization efforts B. Sustainability Plan
I have no idea whether this kind of outline is appropriate for the information technology component of a division improvement plan. Perhaps I can work with Supt. Borgonia to come up with a more specific plan suitable for the Cebu Provincial Schools Division. With such a draft, I would propose a ICT Division Planning workshop, with the superintendents, assistant superintendents and IT coordinators of the 7 school divisions in Cebu. The workshop could critique the draft of the provincial schools division, and participants from other divisions could start drafting their own plans. If such a workshop is successful, the DepEd regional office may also want to plan another similar workshop for the other divisions (and staff of the Cebu divisions who missed the first one). Before finalizing the plan for the Provincial Schools Division, there should be some consultations with the high school heads, similar to the one conducted last July. Participatory planning is useful, especially since the school heads have to incorporate IT into their school improvement plans to make things happen.