It can be so annoying when colleagues wish to use education technology. Here's how to minimise the likelihood that they would want to.
- Make it hard to access, eg keep computer labs locked, don’t make the rooms easily bookable from anywhere, give the responsibility for equipment loans to someone who works part-time.
- Make the tech hard to use, eg make sure there are no instructions, manuals or quick-start guides.
- As an extension to the preceding point, offer no training sessions whatsoever.
- Make it hard to report faulty equipment. For instance, don't have any reporting 'system' at all: ask people to catch you or the technician at random, in corridors. If you must have a more formal system than that, make sure that reporting has to be done on paper, using long forms that take at least ten minutes to fill out, with questions that are hard to answer, and put a batch of these forms in the least accessible part of the school (a 'temporary' hut is quite useful here, especially if it's kept locked most of the time).
- Take a long time to respond to fault reports. If the headteacher or principal insists that you respond within, say, 24 hours, ask for faults to be reported by email, and create an autoresponse system so that people receive a response within a few seconds. You can then safely ignore the message altogether.
- Do not replace faulty equipment immediately with something that works, but take it away for repair. This approach works very well when the item is a printer.
- Take a long time to have it repaired. If you take long enough, people will forget that it ever existed.
- Make the equipment uninviting to use, eg filthy keyboards, digital cameras not fully charged, computers taking several minutes to start up, tablets taking half an hour to connect to the wi-fi.
- Only allow access if the intended use meets with your approval. As it happens, this is a very good approach if staff are allowing kids to do what they like on computers as a way of keeping them quiet. But you can extend the principle by asking every teacher to justify every intended use, in advance. Ask for at least a week's notice, and for a long form to be filled out.
- Make the rooms uninviting, eg untidy, printer paper all over the floor.
- Do not keep equipment maintained, including keeping antivirus software up to date. In fact, that second one is very good, as it should cause everyone with a computer at home to not wish to risk sending or taking home infected files.
Needless to say, I hope, this article is tongue-in-cheek, and if you take any notice of it at all it should be with a view to doing the exact opposite of what I've recommended.
Sadly, all of these suggestions have been made on the basis of practice I've seen.
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