How Collaboration Helps School Leaders Succeed
School leaders can use online networks and communities for their own personal professional learning, and to support collaboration with staff across schools and districts. In “How Online Learning Communities Help Principals Collaborate and Succeed,” Shannon Holden, Assistant Principal, Republic Middle School, MO, presented on the unique possibilities that online collaboration offers for personal professional learning and within schools, and how school leaders can use edWeb.net for online collaboration with staff.
As a personal tool, school leaders can use online communities to expand their network. Meeting other professionals online builds personal learning networks, which help with keeping up to date on the latest in a certain topic or school initiative, allowing for more informed decision making within their own schools. In certain schools there may be only one leadership position, and online collaboration can help school leaders meet and share innovative ideas with other professionals they would not have met in person. Online collaboration also allows school leaders to get answers to important questions they may not find within schools, as well as access to more communities that meet their unique personal professional learning needs.
To support school and district professional learning and collaboration, Shannon Holden recommends school leaders use edWeb.net. Using edWeb’s free platform, they can create professional learning communities for collaboration within schools, a department, an association, or any professional learning group. Communities can be used to archive materials or links, have discussions, blog, participate in live chats, and post calendar events. School leaders can customize their communities to suit the professional learning needs of the group.
Using the Browse edWebinars feature on edWeb, school leaders can search through over 1,300 edWebinar recordings by topic, community, keyword, or date and find recordings that fit their staffs’ professional learning needs. In addition to providing professional learning, online communities can be used to motivate teachers by spreading good news about the school. “If you’re not the one telling the story, someone else is telling the story and they might not tell it as well and as positively as you can tell it,” said Shannon. With opportunities for personalized professional learning, collaboration with staff, and access to a larger network with more information, school leaders can significantly benefit from using online communities to collaborate.
This broadcast was hosted by edWeb.net.
About the Presenter
Shannon Holden has been a high school and middle school teacher and administrator in Texas and Missouri for 20 years. Shannon built a website, www.newteacherhelp.com to help reduce the 50% five-year attrition rate for new teachers in the educational profession. Shannon speaks to college students, teachers, and administrators across the Midwest about classroom management, maintaining positive relationships with parents, instructional strategies that engage students, and implementing technology in the classroom. He is the host of the New Teacher Help and TechTools for the Classroom communities on edWeb.net. Follow him on Twitter @newteacherhelp.
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