Success is about sharing.

After work­ing for years on our school’s 1:1 Learn­ing Ini­tia­tive we are now com­ing to the end of our first three-year device cycle of and, it is helping us exam­ine, inves­ti­gate and reaf­firm where we are and what will be doing for the next three years.

sharing_successWe are taking into account all aspects of our pro­gram, lessons learned from our suc­cesses and fail­ures, con­ver­sa­tions with stu­dents, col­leagues and families, along with new research and exam­ples from other schools and institutions.

And of course we are sharing as much as we ever have with anyone who wants to learn from us.  Indeed, the sharing process has always helped to steer our program, and it, I believe, a hall­mark for any strong pro­gram, insti­tu­tion or leader.

Recently we hosted a site visit.  We hosted vis­i­tors from ten schools and five states, all interested in hearing about our pro­gram and seeing our school in action.  The is the third time in as many years that we’ve done this, and all told, we have hosted over 35 schools to date.

We run these events not only because we believe that we’ve had a successful program so far, but also because  they force us to think about what we are doing and explain our program in a way that will help other schools grow and develop. Sec­ond, we believe in pay­ing it for­ward  we are shar­ing as oth­ers have shared with us.

As we explored the pos­si­bil­ity of our own 1:1 Ini­tia­tive we went on the road and vis­ited a num­ber of schools and attended numer­ous con­fer­ences (see below) to hear the good, the bad and the ugly from those who came before us. From these vis­its, we learned a great deal about what we wanted to do (stu­dent lead­er­ship), what we needed to explore fur­ther (own­er­ship mod­els) and what we didn’t want to do (for­get about pro­fes­sional development).

The open­ness of oth­ers and their col­le­gial­ity helped us develop our pro­gram and have the suc­cess that we believe we’ve had to this day.

Shar­ing can hap­pen in a num­ber of ways and can be about the big and the small. Suc­cess in sharing shouldn’t be judged by size  only by the way it impacts those asso­ci­ted with it.  Truly, from small suc­cess, greater suc­cess can grow.

You don’t need to look far to find exam­ples of suc­cess and shar­ing that we can all learn from easily.

Here are few exam­ples of what I con­sider suc­cess through sharing:

#edchat#ised­chat#satchat & #leadin­gonline are all exam­ples of the ongo­ing shar­ing of suc­cess­ful prac­tice (and unsuc­cess­ful prac­tice) in edu­ca­tion.  Through these Twit­ter hash­tags peo­ple are ask­ing ques­tions, shar­ing sto­ries and help­ing guide others, making the facilitators mod­els of how social media can be used to con­nect peo­ple and help them achieve their goals.

ISED and NYCIST are just two exam­ples of the list­servs I sub­scribe to and rely on.  I learn from what oth­ers are shar­ing and give back what I’ve learned. List­servs are noth­ing new to edu­ca­tion and shar­ing, but I think they still offer an amaz­ing way to con­nect with peo­ple and learn.

Blogs, blogs and more blogs.  There is no short­age of peo­ple writ­ing online and the num­ber of edu­ca­tional blogs out there is only grow­ing. Find peo­ple that write, and read what they have to say. They are tak­ing time to write about what they are doing, what they have learned, their suc­cess and fail­ures, and giv­ing it to all of you so that you can learn. It’s why I, for one, do what I do; and I am happy to share with you the work some of my col­leagues and friends are doing as well:

  • Steve Valentine (@sjvalentine) – Refreshing Wednesday – A look into the mind of an Upper School Assistant Head and his thought on schools, leadership and curriculum
  • Reshan Richards (@reshanrichards) – The Constructivist Toolkit – Helping others make sense of the rapidly changing face of education technology.
  • Brendan Schneider (@schneiderb) – – An admissions officer and social media guru. If you want to know how inbound marketing can help in the admissions process.
  • Fraser Spears (@fraserspeirs) – Fraser Speirs – If you are interested in 1:1 iPad programs look not further.
  • edSocialMedia (@edSocialMedia) – edSocialMedia – This is a great collection of people talking about all things relating to social media in education. You will find professional in all areas of school life sharing their successes. [Disclosure: I manage the blog for edSocialMedia]

There are numer­ous other blogs out there of peo­ple shar­ing best prac­tice and suc­cess sto­ries.  Search using Google’s blogs search or Tech­no­rati to find the blog that can help you achieve your success.

Further, I would encour­age each of you read­ing this to think of a suc­cess, big or small, you can share  and then share it. It can be as short as a tweet, a com­ment made on a blog, a reply to a list­serv, or a post on a blog as a guest.  It can be you start­ing your own blog, making a pre­sen­ta­tion at a con­fer­ence or inviting peo­ple (from inside or out­side your school/institution) to see what you are doing.

If you think you are successful in what you are doing, give back and inspire others!

Schools visited/conferences:



About William Stites

Currently the Director of Technology for Montclair Kimberley Academy, "Blogger in Chief" for, husband and father to two crazy kids who make me smile everyday.
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  • David Korfhage

    Sharing your success is important, but when I read about this, I also wondered, “Are you sharing your failure?” We can learn a lot from our failures, and we can learn even more, I think, if we share are failures with others.