“Educators today are faced with myriad changes driven by forces outside their control. Changes are not always understood or supported by teachers though the impact … can be profound” (Thompson, Jr., 2003, p. 102). Change can be uncomfortable for anyone; however, the integration of technology into education is a change that is worth its discomfort. Several book reviews, edited by Jay C. Thompson, illustrate the need for school reform in different areas. There is no one solution that would repair the issues facing these schools, but the integration of technology would be a step toward their goals of success.
What is success? What does it look like for a school? Generally success is “the favorable or prosperous termination of attempts or endeavors” or “attainment of wealth, position, honors, or the like” ("success", 2010, figure 1). Barbara Korth, a contributor to Liane Brouillette’s book, Charter Schools: Lessons in Reform, describes success as “an evolving multivoiced, logically diverse concept” (Thompson, Jr., 2003, p. 4). Some struggling schools have found that an increase in their technology has helped them to find improvement in student achievement (Bronston, 2009). When it comes to a school’s success, student achievement is most certainly has a significant influence. In Frederick M. Hess’s book, Revolution at the Margins: The Impact of Competition on Urban School Systems, he examines the dynamic that occurs when schools in the same geographical area compete for student enrollment (Thompson, Jr.). One reason parents may choose one school over another is sure to be its higher success. In attempt to achieve this success and enrollment, a school should consider integrating more technology.
Technology can offer great support to teachers. It provides infinite resources for helping all students to learn (Valdez, 2005). Peter S. Temes explains that “great teachers are more important than anything else. The focus of reform in schools…should be to support teachers rather than to reform institutions” (Thompson, Jr., 2003, p. 3) Therefore, the integration of technology can be a beneficial step in the process of school reform.
Temes also claims that teachers’ instruction too frequently deflates students’ thoughts (Thompson, Jr., 2003). It should instead nurture critical and independent thinking (Thompson, Jr.). The integration of technology can be conducive to developing students’ problem-solving and critical thinking skills (Valdez, 2005). Rather than being stifled, then students’ ideas could be cultivated.
In her review, Nancy J. Brooks expresses concerns about educational opportunities for low-income students (Thompson, Jr., 2003). Technology integration in schools can alleviate such worries. The number of computers in homes in The United States is increasing overall, according to the Census Bureau (Eng, 2009). Unfortunately the number of low-income homes with computers is low nevertheless. Only 28% of families...