There is a lot going on in this image below...and, I think this cut (print block) sums up my current situation in life. This image popped up on my facebook "memories" today as a reminder of the picture I snapped four years ago in my printshop.

My intent was to document and share with others this gorgeous vintage cut and type I rescued from a Fresno antique store. At the time, I had questions about the best cleaning methods for the copper plate and the type...and facebook was a big part of my print community. The letterpress and printing groups on facebook are full of wonderful, helpful people. 

Thanks for the memories, facebook. I miss those people in the printing groups, the hobbyists, the artists, and the veterans of the craft. Why am I slowly leaving facebook? As part of my terminal degree, I am knee-deep (not a scientific term) in researching scholarly journal articles for my doctoral degree. Instead of printing and sharing to the communities on facebook, I am synthesizing main arguments within the texts and creating a matrix (spreadsheet). For this current project, I am curating approximately 14 articles around the topic of instructional technology ("edtech") and the ways technology impacts student privacy. It is a bit frightening, to be honest.

And, social media is the biggest offender next to smartphones and apps. The more I read about edtech and student privacy, the more I become concerned over my own. So, my "memories" are methodically being archived and summarily deleted. I am not jumping on the Big Data conspiracy train or sounding the social media alarm bells—I just want more control over my data. On that note: I'll post my findings here later if you're interested.

Aloha, EdTechTOSA

This is how it ends. Budgets get prioritized. Spreadsheets get adjusted. Cabinet decisions happen. Board policy does whatever it does. And, then the TOSA funding disappears. 

Well, it's not quite that simple. I knew my Tech TOSA position was a temporary thing. 

"All we are is dust in the wind, Dude."

Talking with attendees at Fall CUE and Spring CUE, this seems to be a trend across numerous districts in California. Maybe that's confirmation bias. Maybe it's just anecdotal evidence. Maybe it's purely coincidental. I'm no scientist. I am an Instructional Technology Coach, or TOSA. At least, I was for four years. 

On several occasions, I joked with my supervisor (the Asst. Superintendent of Curriculum and Instruction) that I'd teach my way out of a job if do it properly. Meaning, I'm not just helping students learn technologies and using technologies to learn in new ways...I'm arming the teaching staff with digital tools, as well. 

Building Capacity

That was the big push before SEL. Don't get me wrong. SEL is a useful and powerful strategy. It needs the funding. I also know that district priorities shift. Learning goals change. Outcomes get realigned. 

It was a good four-year run as a TOSA. To be fair, I did ask the question in my interview ~four years ago, "How long will you fund this TOSA position?" The answer was three years for sure, and possibly four. And, here we are at the end of year four. 

But, what does it mean? 

It means that I'll be somewhere, doing something in the education field next year. At this point, I'm not sure exactly what that looks like. However, I'm optimistic. The bigger issue for me right now is deciding what to do with all this digital portfolio stuff and social media. 

One thing I do need: a total rebrand. I don't mean that in an Instagram influencer, social media evangelist kinda way. I just need to create an identity that sticks across platforms and is not tied to one job or one district. 

I really need to shy away from titles [see previous post]. I need to focus on building my own capacity. So, like any good planner, I reviewed Sun Tzu's Art of War and then I made a to-do list. 

Currently working on:   
  • Laying Plans 
  • letters of recommendation acquisition (3, but 4 would be ideal)
  • resume (in both traditional and infographic format) 
  • new URL for this website
  • new Instagram handle 
  • new Twitter handle