Part 4 – Rollout
In this post I will be discussing how we put Moodle into the hands of our staff. Who will have access? How was it decided? What was our vision of how Moodle would be used?
First and foremost, we did not force staff to use Moodle. In my opinion, this was crucial – having people use Moodle and be at Moodle training because they want to not because they have to. My co-worker has this saying “there are 3 types of people at trainings – vacationers, prisoners and learners”. Vacationers – those who just want to get out of the building and don’t really pay attention. Prisoners – those who are there only because they have to and it’s mandatory. Learners – those who truly want to learn about the topic. We want Learners.
For our initial roll out of Moodle we made it available to a certain group of people in a program that we already had in place in our district. This program was the TICT Initiative which consisted of about 500 teachers who applied and were accepted into the program. Without going into too much detail if they were accepted they received equipment (an LCD projector and a wireless mouse and keyboard) and in return they were required to complete 15 hours of training and tech integration learning sessions. The reason we chose this group to be the initial users was because each member had a projector and could project large screen their Moodle course during the school day. We wanted Moodle to be used by teachers in school as well as students having access outside of school.
Our vision of Moodle was not just an online course that students access at home. Yes, we did want to extend the school day and have students work and collaborate outside of school but we wanted our teachers to use Moodle during the school day as well. It could be used for teachers to have all of their links and materials in one spot, showing embedded videos, showing students work, etc.
So TICT cadre members or anyone who supported TICT cadre members were the first to be able to create Moodle courses. Any person in our district’s system could log into Moodle as we use LDAP and active directory for user authentication for Moodle. However, for a user to be able to create a course I would have to give them course creator rights – so it was monitored.
If a staff member was “eligible” to get course creator rights they had to take the initial Moodle training. Mandatory training is very important and it will save you a lot of time answering “how do I” emails from staff. Also, in the training the blended learning model was discussed. And before I get too far I’m going to abruptly stop because my next post is about training, so more on that later..
As far as the Moodle trainers there was one main Moodle trainer and I was there for more techy type questions. The rollout was further sustained and helped by Moodle Building Leaders. Moodle Building Leaders were staff who wanted to take on the Moodle trainer role for their school. It was voluntary and it was to help create more opportunities to staff to get trained since it was a requirement before creating courses. We made a Moodle Training course template for each school’s MBL and they customized it how they liked. This way there was some sort of consistency in training.
And again we get brought back to the training topic so I’ll sum up the Rollout topic. When we rolled out Moodle we started small but we had nice, quality trainings and we knew the staff wanted to be there and learn. We noticed that Moodle had sort of a snowball affect when teachers who had taken the training showed their Moodle work to colleagues. It perked the interest of their colleagues and created some excitement.
That’s it for now!
- Don’t force staff to use Moodle.
- Mandatory training will save a lot of “how do I” emails you get.
- “How we implemented Moodle” Preview
- “How we implemented Moodle” Part 1 – Idea to Reality
- “How we implemented Moodle” Part 2 – Installation and Modules
- “How we implemented Moodle” Part 3 – Customization
Next time on “How we implemented Moodle” – Training