Hiring an Edtech consultant can be a great way for K-12 schools to get the most out of their technology and ensure that they are providing the best possible education for their students. Edtech consultants will help you with everything from figuring out what kind of Desktops or laptops would work best in your classroom, to implementing the right allocation Internet Bandwidth for the new blended learning models, to designing the Cloud space for a seamless teaching and learning experience. Hence It’s important to hire an EdTech consultant who understands this new learning environment and can help you transform your school into something that will prepare your students for life after Covid 19 Pandemic.
To learn more about why Edtech consultants may be right for your school, read on!
The importance of hiring an education technology consultant
Technology is rapidly evolving, and your organization is following right along. Sometimes it might be difficult to keep up with everything, especially when a new need arises that you haven’t dealt with previously. Fortunately, you don’t have to tackle these difficulties on your own.An ICT consultant can assist you in meeting your Institution’s demands while also providing you with knowledge that you can’t get anyplace else.
By bringing in a consultant to help with larger projects and one-off assignments, your employees are free to stay focused on the main operations of your business. An ICT consultant may also help your IT department be more efficient and simplify procedures for your team. A consultant’s experience and unique viewpoint will assist your IT department in running more efficiently.
What is an Education Technology Consultant?
Education technology consulting is the practice of utilizing information and communication technologies to create, enhance, or support education. Edtech (education technology) consultants help schools implement ed tech into their curriculum. Ed tech can include any tool that enhances learning inside a classroom environment, such as smartboards, laptops for students, Learning Management Systems, Cloud Computing to make learning anywhere, Connectivity inside & Outside the classroom
Define the scope of work
The scope of work of an Edtech Consultant would include reviewing any Education technology that is currently in place, and making recommendations on how to improve the education process with Edtech. It would also include setting up an LMS (Learning Management System) for online courses or blended learning after Covid 19 Pandemic.
The objective is to use contemporary technologies in a way that not only meets present standards but also takes into account future needs while still providing excellent instruction and student learning.
The Edtech Consultant’s role would also involve determining the best delivery methods for content, whether through blended learning (in-class and online) or smart classrooms. The Edtech consultant will help in streamlining processes between technology providers and the education department to make sure that all stakeholders are on the same page during transition from traditional teaching methodologies to new collaborative learning platforms.
Identify and prioritize needs
It’s not enough for schools to buy student and staff computers, create a robust WiFi network, provide the most up-to-date and best student information software, or communicate with parents utilizing a messaging platform. If these systems don’t communicate with one another—that is, if they exist as autonomous silos rather than as interconnected parts of a schoolwide initiative—the institution will never achieve its true potential. Only when different schools’ assets and knowledge are combined can the goal of full synchronization be reached.
Once you have identified your needs, it’s time to prioritize them. There are many EdTech companies competing for K-12 contracts, so there is no reason not to take advantage of the opportunities available. However, school administrators must carefully weigh their options before choosing one company to monopolize its EdTech offering or another to fall through the cracks of the purchasing process. Here’s where an Edtech Consultant adds value by :
- Edtech Consultant can help you prioritize and streamline your EdTech needs.
- Edtech consultant has deep knowledge on the technology EdTech companies offer and can help you weigh Edtech company options.
- EdTech Consultant will be your liaison with all of the EdTech vendors during the RFP process.
- Edtech consultant has experience writing EdTec vendor requests for proposals (RFP). Edtech consultant is able to provide an unbiased, customized view on how each brand offers the products and services you’re looking for.
- Edtech consultants can help your IT Administrators to identify specific EdTec software brands that are a best fit for your school’s unique needs, budgeting considerations, curriculum standards, etc., when writing the EdTech RFP.
- EdTech Consultant will manage all of the EdTec vendor requests
- Edtech Consultant has the connections to get you great deals on EdTech.
- Edtech Consultant knows how these tools will integrate into your school culture, mission, vision and drive for success.
Create a timeline for implementation
The success of any vision is measured by its execution and adoption. Edtech is no different. EdTech implementation should be a phased approach, with a clear strategy and timeline for EdTec project execution.
- Edtech Consultant will provide you with the insights to create a Edtech plan that provides you with the clear vision and direction needed to execute your EdTec initiatives successfully.
- Edtech Consultant will provide you with the tools to create an EdTec plan that outlines all of your technology initiatives on both short term (this year) and long term (next three years).
- Education Technology Consultant can help schools understand how EdTech works, what tools are available in the market today and where they fit inside their school.
Since consultants possess deep knowledge on the technology road map, they will be able to provide you with the right insights on future Edtech Integration , Edtech ROI, EdTech planning strategies.
The end result of this process will be an EdTec roadmap that outlines all the technology initiatives at your school – both short term (this year) and long term.
Determine how to measure success
Now that we have a Vision, Mission and Implementation calendar, let’s look at the tools on how to measure the success of the Technology implementation.
An Edtech Roll out project calendar is the prime step to measure the success. Edtech consultants should be able to provide a detailed plan with a clear workweek break up on project stages. Ideally, in 6-8 weeks, an Edtech design/implementation plan should be ready to track the Edtech implementation. Now that you’ve completed the Edtech design/implementation plan, keep a monthly calendar for the EdTech consultant and school leadership team to document progress every month. – this will help in building a healthy relationship with EdTec consultants. While measuring the success of implementation, its important that various stakeholders like Teachers, Academic Coordinators, IT Administrators and Students are involved to form an EdTec implementation plan. – Edtech success lies in the fact that all stakeholders are involved from the beginning of the design process to its completion.
EdTech consulting is a unique blend of pedagogy, technology and market knowledge which makes it difficult for individuals who have not undergone extensive training or experienced themselves to provide successful EdTech planning.
Choose the best vendor(s) based on criteria defined in step two
When it comes to choosing an Edtech Consultant, the following factors need to be on your checklist.
- Technical Certifications from IT and Audio Visual OEM’s / Body
- Certification from EdTech Industry Organizations on Using Technology in the Classroom
- Experience in previous Edtech Projects – Successful or Not Successful
- Cost vs. Benefits / ROI of Edtech Project(s) under Consultants Experience and Credentials
- References from Past Edtech Clients Who Have Worked with the consultant.
- Improve the future impact of your Institution and help educate more people by providing an overview of past efforts, future plans, and implementation challenges.
Develop a contract that covers what will be provided, when, by whom, and at what cost
While signing up for an Education technology Consultant, it’s important for the institution to sign up a contract to ensure that both parties are on the same page. Edtech consultants should develop a contract which outlines what will be provided, when, by whom and at what cost.
Education technology consulting is meant to provide an Edtech solution for K-12 schools based upon their needs. Not every school has exactly the same requirements or vision of how education is provided in their institution. Hence the contract should be customized to suit the school’s Edtech vision and requirements.
The Edtech solution should be provided by the Edtech consultant in weeks or months depending upon what was decided earlier during the contract negotiation process. It’s important to note that Edtech consulting is not a one-time thing; instead it could require multiple sessions/visits from Edtech consultants for implementation of changes and updates according to the school’s technology adoption plan.
When Edtech consulting sessions are conducted, the Edtech consultant should minimize disruption to the student’s daily learning process. Edtech consultants can also provide blended learning training to teachers and other staff members who will be involved in implementation of Edtech solutions at school.
Conclusion: Education technology consulting is one of the best ways for K-12 schools to get the most out of their technology and make sure that they are providing the best possible education for their students. If you’re interested in implementing Edtech solutions at your school, but don’t know where to start or what should be prioritized first, an education technology consultant can help identify needs and provide a timeline with implementation steps. The key to success when it comes to Edtech implementations lies not only in choosing the right software solution, but also hiring someone who has experience working on these types of projects before. This way you won’t have any surprises along the way which will slow things down significantly. If you think hiring an Edtech Consultant is the right move for your school, contact us today!