Suppose you want to make your application for school administration positions stand out. In that case, you should consider sending a philosophy of digital leadership statement along with your resume and cover letter.
You probably already know that competition for highly sought-after school administrative jobs is fierce. If you want to gain more interviews, you need to go the extra mile to make an excellent impression with your employment application. A well-written philosophy of digital leadership statement can help you do just that.
Every aspect of society is growing more reliant on technology, so it only makes sense that schools are now harnessing digital technologies to enrich instruction throughout their classrooms.
As there are a growing number of techno-babies who can expertly handle iPads and similar devices long before learning how to tie their shoelaces, schools are tapping into this area more and more. Therefore, if you seek a position in school administration with dreams of leading a school, you need to establish a vision for the effective use of school educational technology to gain an edge over other applicants.
Your question may be:
Why Not Send a Regular Philosophy of Administration and Leadership Statement?
A philosophy of administration and leadership is still considered a valuable document and an integral part of a school administrator’s job application. It gives your potential employer an idea of your beliefs and attitudes about education leadership while communicating your thoughts on your school leader’s responsibilities.
On the other hand, a Philosophy of Digital Leadership shows you are ready to take on the challenge of using technology in the classroom. It communicates that you understand the “why,” “how,” and “where to begin” when it comes to educational technology, making you a valuable asset for any educational institute.
Many other educators and administrators are not tech-savvy and may even be leery about learning new technology skills. Therefore, knowing that an applicant for a school administrative position is well-versed in educational technology tools and has a well-thought-out plan for implementing and managing the school’s technology will go a long way for the hiring managers.
“So, What Should My Philosophy of Digital Leadership Cover?”
According to Eric Sheninger, author of Digital Leadership: Changing Paradigms for Changing Times’ and Senior Fellow and Thought Leader on Digital Leadership with the International Center for Leadership in Education (ICLE), there are seven Pillars of Digital Leadership. Each of these represents an area in all schools’ culture, which can be improved through technology. Therefore, you need to focus on these while writing your philosophy statement to show that you can use technology to make a sustainable change.
Demonstrate you value communication and prove you are ready to provide relevant information in real-time to stakeholders. It would be best if you also communicated you are adept at using different tools to meet those involved regardless of where they are in the digital age.
As a leader in education, your job is to tell your school’s story before someone else does. This is especially important since another’s version won’t necessarily be the one you want to be told.
Using different tools, you need to create a platform where you can showcase your school’s positives and promise transparency. So, show that you’re up for this task in your Philosophy of Digital Leadership.
Like business leaders, digital education leaders should demonstrate they understand their school’s value as a brand and create a positive brand presence. At the same time, write your personal digital statement, including how you’ll use technology to emphasize school culture’s positives. How will you increase community pride and attract families seeking a good school to send their children to and retain them later on?
The primary goal of digital education is to help today’s students learn using the devices they use beyond school hours. Keeping in mind that schools should reflect real life, your Philosophy of Digital Leadership needs to highlight how you intend to put real-world tools into the hands of students and allow them to apply what they’ve learned using them.
You should especially focus on how you plan to cultivate students’ communication skills, creativity, media literacy, and other core competencies which society demands.
Today’s schools are no longer silos of information. Digital education leaders can easily get the support and feedback they need by forming Personal Learning Networks (PLN). You need to include in your statement how you can build one of these to meet different learning needs, get more resources, access knowledge, connect with experts and practitioners in education, and share strategies that enhance learning, teaching, and even leadership.
Transformation of Learning Spaces and Environments
In addition to showing how you’ll initiate change, your Philosophy of Digital Leadership should explain how you’ll be transforming learning spaces and environments to support students’ skill sets and align them to the real world.
Establish a vision and strategic plan to advance the school toward the digital world. You’ll need to show off your knowledge of the characteristics and dynamics that make a learning space innovative.
The last thing to cover in this document is how you intend to improve existing programs and resources. You should explain how you plan on leveraging the connections you create using technology to make multiple improvements across the school culture.
“Is There Anything Else I Should Know?”
While your Philosophy of Digital Leadership should address the seven pillars to stand out from other leaders’ applications, you must also express your general beliefs in education. Since this task can be easier said than done, reflect on the following questions one at a time to create an engaging, focused document.
- What are my beliefs based on? Do my past experiences, the knowledge gained, or classical ideals motivate me as a leader in education?
- What is the purpose of being a school leader? In addition to empowering students to use technology to learn and gain knowledge, should education be directed towards a core curriculum, students’ actions, behaviors, fostering citizenship, or teaching critical thinking and decision-making?
- What roles should the teachers I lead play? Should I decide for them or entrust them to choose their roles themselves or based on the students’ feedback?
- What role will learners play in the digital educational environment you plan to establish? Will they only have to memorize facts, apply knowledge, or form opinions and make decisions?
Jot down the answers to these questions and a few concise statements covering the seven pillars of digital leadership. However, before you start writing, keep in mind the following tips:
- Make your Philosophy of Digital Leadership an accurate reflection of your beliefs.
- Be clear and concise. As tempted as you may be to flex your vocabulary skills, use plain language that can be easily understood.
- Learn about the school you’re applying to so that you can incorporate its mission, goals, and objectives into your philosophy.
- Remember to focus on the students since all your efforts target them. Highlight how you will meet students’ needs and help teachers fulfill them.
- Avoid writing a very long Philosophy of Digital Leadership. Try to keep it to one page, or your potential employer will think you’re long-winded.
- Don’t use empty words or space fillers, as these will diminish the effect of the document.
- Don’t come off as a know-it-all. A leader should always be a lifelong learner, so showcase your humble side and ability to adapt to students’ and teachers’ needs.
- While you should use strong statements, make sure they don’t offend others who may have different beliefs. Not offending others is an imperative aspect of digital education since this is a new direction many have yet to accept.
- Having someone proofread your document for spelling, grammar, and clarity is an excellent idea.
With these tips, you’ll be able to write a unique Philosophy of Digital Leadership that best reflects how you’ll lead any school to embrace digital technologies and step into the next century. Don’t worry if you can’t write one right away. With so much on your plate daily, you may not have the time to think clearly and create this document.
Luckily, Candace has the skills and experience to draft a document that’ll transform you from just a good administrative candidate to the best choice to lead your prospective school.
Get in touch with her at firstname.lastname@example.org, and let us create a Philosophy of Digital Leadership Statement that’ll get you shortlisted or directly hired.