When I look back on the WHY I started down the road of being a CTO, I found myself with a profound desire to make things better, to do that which other CTOs had so often failed–to empower classroom learning experiences through the use of technology. So often, I found in my own experience, CTOs were vain suits and creatures of political expediency, their focus being on the latest gadgets, chasing after district funding for projects that did little, seldom doing anything that addressed the profound problems school districts faced. Make it simple, my experiences cried, help them transform their work, to do what would be impossible. A young man’s hubris? Probably but no less worthy a goal.
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I don’t remember when I left the road to success, when the exit sign called to me more than the open road. I do know that I agree wholeheartedly with the message on the side of this truck. It is a lesson that is inscribed on my heart, that forces me to reflect and ask, “Where does the long road begin so that I may follow it? There are no shortcuts.”
Then, I realize that I am on it, that the long road is fraught with failure, that the path lies through the challenges, that all else is illusion. There was no exit sign, the truth remains as it was–a beacon of hope to which I must hearken.
One more time, let me try, let me begin again.
Update: Some people have called me and asked, “What’s up?” The truth is, I am casting for a renewal of spirit, a getting in touch with the core, bedrock reasons I started out to be a CTO. By doing so, I regain power and strength, my conviction is strengthened, and I realize that the obstacles are not insurmountable. Think of it as a re-dedication, a re-commitment…an opportunity to gain a firmer grip on things.
And, while early days certainly saw glory in the work, the real excitement is that there are no shortcuts. Like when you want to help people in a school embrace technology as a part of instruction…you have to go classroom by classroom, issue by issue, and work through it, whatever “it” is. If you’re not committed, then you lack the stamina to reach the finish line. I hope that makes sense and this update clarifies the goal of the post.