EDINBURG – Edinburg CISD Superintendent Dr. René Gutiérrez recently kicked off the District’s annual Leadership Academy at the Edinburg Conference Center at Renaissance, highlighting the pivotal role technology plays in the classroom.

“Technology is the way our kids are learning in the classroom and we are always ahead,” Gutiérrez said. “We want to do everything we can by investing as much as we can in technology, in training our teachers, and in providing our teachers with the technology devices that they need in the classroom.”

Award-winning author Eric Sheninger was the keynote speaker of the Leadership Academy and emphasized the importance of how school leaders need to embrace and effectively utilize technology.

“When we think about change, it’s not about the tech. It’s about how we improve our core facts,” said Sheninger. “As we think about all these exponential changes that are happening outside, everyone is innovating. Everyone is embracing entrepreneurial hindsight.”

Sheninger is the author of the best-selling book, Digital Leadership: Changing Paradigms for Changing Times.

“The principles in this book are – how do we look at our core work and improve what we do? So, what we do, we can do better,” Sheninger asked. “The whole premise is outcomes. Whether it’s teaching outcomes, learning outcomes or leadership outcomes, that’s what the whole premise of the book is about.” 

During the four-day leadership academy, those in attendance also received updates on cultural diversity, bullying and harassment policies.

Leandra Ortiz, an attorney with the Walsh Gallegos Law Firm, presented a training program on bullying and harassment to the District’s administrators, directors and principals.

“Even though efforts are made to foster cultural diversity at your campus among administrators, staff and students, it is important to know when instances of bullying occur so they can be addressed right away,” Ortiz said.

Additionally, FBI Special Agent Larry Baker urged educators to be vigilant when it comes to cyber security during his presentation.

Baker pointed out several safety features educators need to be aware of when using devices, such as cellphones and computers. He also warned about the dangers of posting personal information on social networks.

“Inappropriate posts can impair your child’s life… forever,” Baker said. “Employers routinely review an applicants’ social networking activities as far back as they can.”