The role of the CTO in school districts is evolving into one of the most important leadership positions in education, yet many who currently fill that job lack the skills and background to make the
1. Broadband and network capacity is the top priority for IT leaders, replacing assessment readiness (which for the first time failed to make the top three).
2. Privacy and security of student data is an increasing concern for IT leaders, with 64% saying they are more important than they were last year.
3. Nearly 90% of respondents expect their instructional materials to be at least 50% digital within the next three years.
4. Virtually all responders (99%) expect to incorporate digital Open Educational Resources (OER) over the next three years, with 45% expecting their digital content to be at least 50% OER within that timeframe.
5. Nearly 80% of IT leaders use online productivity tools—the largest use of cloud-based solutions in education.
6. District bans on student personal devices are a thing of the past—only 11 percent have banning policies.
7. The path to IT leadership differs for women and men. The vast majority of women come from educational / instructional backgrounds (72%). The majority of men (54%) come from technology / technical backgrounds.
8. Racial diversity in IT leadership is lacking. 90% of school IT leaders are white.
9. IT leaders have advanced education, with 75% earning some college beyond their bachelor’s degree.
10. More than one-third of IT leaders plan to retire in the next six years.
Recent media attention has focused on the under-representation of women in high-tech fields and raised questions about gender representation in the K-12 sector. To contribute to that conversation, we dove back into our survey data to see what information we had gathered about gender. The data revealed several interesting gender discrepancies, some of which parallel industry-wide trends.