11 December 2007
Mordac Strikes Again
You might remember me writing about issues with the district Mordac(s). This has been an ongoing drama over the last couple of years, taking on various forms. In recent days, I was told that the chief Mordac was going to block my classroom wiki from being accessed at school because "wikis are unsafe for kids." (Keep in mind that this is the same man who thinks that blogs have pop-up ads which will cause young male adolescents to get erections...therefore, there should be no blog access for kids at school.) There was no explanation about what it is that is unsafe, nor will any be forthcoming. I told my principal that it was fine if he wanted to block the link. After all, the link is for kids and parents who need information outside the school day. Being able to see things from a school computer isn't necessary.
The chief Mordac has some serious control issues and does not appear to live in the same educational world as anyone else. He singlehandedly banned all games (even educational ones) from being accessed...then decided that some might be all right, but they had to be evaluated by Curriculum staff. Um, teachers have all manner of supplementary printed materials (including games) which do not have to have Curriculum approval. I can go out tomorrow and buy a book of biology crossword puzzles and no one will raise an eyebrow. But I have to document, plead, and get a brazilian signatures if these same puzzles are in a digital format.
Shouldn't the Mordacs of the educational world be promoting features of Classroom 2.0? I remember sitting in a district budget feedback session last year. Mordac and his department were in front of me---and they were shocked (!) that out of all of the comments staff were making about the need for various programs, people, and departments that not a single one addressed technology. They didn't seem to make the connection between their fiefdom and how that is viewed by everyone else...how often they stand in the way of teachers using technology with students rather than supporting it.
I thought about just deleting my classroom wiki. The fact is that I haven't updated it in some time or promoted it much. I thought now that the district uses the Microsoft version of a wiki (known as "SharePoint") that Mordac would be on board. But I see this most recent display of ignorance and arrogance on his part as a wake-up call. It's time to drag him kicking and screaming into the 21st century.