Reposted from Digital Promise:
Digital Promise and the Education Industry Association set out to identify key obstacles and potential solutions for the discovery and acquisition of K-12 personalized learning technology tools. They found there’s a gap between how school and district administrators perceive the procurement process and how providers perceive it.
The good news? Districts take ed-tech purchasing seriously, relying on available sources of information to find and acquire products that meet their needs. Likewise, companies are making an effort to understand district needs and develop products that address them. The bad news? With a growing number of products and limited trusted information about them, many districts rely on informal sources instead of data and evidence to make decisions. With no easy way to learn what districts need, many companies focus on developing relationships and building referral networks. Further, companies perceive little incentive to produce rigorous evidence.
This research supports a lot of what we have observed about the challenges in purchasing learning technology tools, and uncovers new and interesting areas of focus. While barriers clearly exist between schools and providers, this research also shows that a more productive and efficient procurement process starts with focusing on both districts’ and developers’ needs.