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This chapter addresses three challenging questions educational leaders are facing today in our technology-driven environment. As our programs include more and more virtual learning and less and less face-to-face learning, the challenge to maintain the human touch in our profession is increasingly at risk. These questions we should be intentionally addressing include the following: (a) How do we identify appropriate responses to technology advances in our programs? (b) How do we establish covenant communities in our diverse classrooms and beyond? and (c) How do we nurture professional relationships as educational leaders? Dialogue focused on these questions will result in strengthening educational leadership programs at every level.

Ncpea publication

This manuscript has been peer-reviewed, accepted, and endorsed by the National Council of Professors of Educational Administration (NCPEA) as a significant contribution to the scholarship and practice of education administration. In addition to publication in the Connexions Content Commons, this module is published in the NCPEA Handbook on Virtual/Online Instruction and Programs in Education Leadership, ISBN 978-1-4507-7263-1. This manuscript is a revision of an article accepted for publication in the TCPEA School Leadership Review, Spring 2012.

    About the Author

  • Dr. Sandra Harris is professor and Director of the Center for Doctoral Studies in Educational Leadership at Lamar University, Beaumont, Texas. She is widely published in the areas of human relations and social justice. Her chapter here is a result of her selection as a "Living Legend" by NCPEA in 2011.


Participating in professional organizations, such as NCPEA, UCEA, AERA, NAESP, NASSP, and AASA has been a valuable experience for me as the relationships that have been fostered through these associations have enabled me to grow personally and professionally. This has led me to consider some of the issues facing educational leaders today and in the years to come, specifically that of focusing on the notion of how to effectively maintain human relationships. While few leaders agree on everything, there is no doubt that we all agree this is a complex time for our schools. My focus of this article is to consider three of the challenges before us to maintain the human touch in our profession:

  • Identifying appropriate responses to the dilemmas that are occurring due to technology advances which include movement to hybrid/blended and fully on-line teaching venues,
  • Establishing covenant communities in our diverse classrooms and beyond, and
  • Nurturing our professional relationships as educational leaders.

While these three topics might seem unrelated, I believe they all are connected to our shared humanity and all have the potential to develop or diminish the human touch.

Identifying responses to technology dilemmas

Matthew Militello (2011) argues that technology in schools today has the potential to be that of a “disruptive force” or to have a “transformational impact” (p. 15). The determining difference, he suggests, does not lie in the technology, but in the humans who control the technology. To illustrate his point, he cites Kurt Vonnegut’s 1952 book, Player Piano , the story of a world created where technology begins to control every aspect of life, thus taking away creativity and ultimately individual freedoms. Reading this article caused me to consider the player piano. How exciting it must have seemed at the beginning; what an awesome piece of technology . . . but after the tunes in its repertoire had been played and played and played and the “new” had worn off, where was the ability to create a new tune, to sing a new song? That was invested only in human capacity.

Questions & Answers

where we get a research paper on Nano chemistry....?
Maira Reply
what are the products of Nano chemistry?
Maira Reply
There are lots of products of nano chemistry... Like nano coatings.....carbon fiber.. And lots of others..
Even nanotechnology is pretty much all about chemistry... Its the chemistry on quantum or atomic level
no nanotechnology is also a part of physics and maths it requires angle formulas and some pressure regarding concepts
Preparation and Applications of Nanomaterial for Drug Delivery
Hafiz Reply
Application of nanotechnology in medicine
what is variations in raman spectra for nanomaterials
Jyoti Reply
I only see partial conversation and what's the question here!
Crow Reply
what about nanotechnology for water purification
RAW Reply
please someone correct me if I'm wrong but I think one can use nanoparticles, specially silver nanoparticles for water treatment.
yes that's correct
I think
Nasa has use it in the 60's, copper as water purification in the moon travel.
nanocopper obvius
what is the stm
Brian Reply
is there industrial application of fullrenes. What is the method to prepare fullrene on large scale.?
industrial application...? mmm I think on the medical side as drug carrier, but you should go deeper on your research, I may be wrong
How we are making nano material?
what is a peer
What is meant by 'nano scale'?
What is STMs full form?
scanning tunneling microscope
how nano science is used for hydrophobicity
Do u think that Graphene and Fullrene fiber can be used to make Air Plane body structure the lightest and strongest. Rafiq
what is differents between GO and RGO?
what is simplest way to understand the applications of nano robots used to detect the cancer affected cell of human body.? How this robot is carried to required site of body cell.? what will be the carrier material and how can be detected that correct delivery of drug is done Rafiq
analytical skills graphene is prepared to kill any type viruses .
Any one who tell me about Preparation and application of Nanomaterial for drug Delivery
what is Nano technology ?
Bob Reply
write examples of Nano molecule?
The nanotechnology is as new science, to scale nanometric
nanotechnology is the study, desing, synthesis, manipulation and application of materials and functional systems through control of matter at nanoscale
Is there any normative that regulates the use of silver nanoparticles?
Damian Reply
what king of growth are you checking .?
What fields keep nano created devices from performing or assimulating ? Magnetic fields ? Are do they assimilate ?
Stoney Reply
why we need to study biomolecules, molecular biology in nanotechnology?
Adin Reply
yes I'm doing my masters in nanotechnology, we are being studying all these domains as well..
what school?
biomolecules are e building blocks of every organics and inorganic materials.
how did you get the value of 2000N.What calculations are needed to arrive at it
Smarajit Reply
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