Educators who successfully incorporate technology into their classrooms give their Christian schools an exciting competitive advantage. However, as you look to invest in new technology, rounding up enough money to purchase the latest gadgets shouldn’t be the only item on your to-do list. Even more importantly, you should consider how your school can leverage that technology to benefit the students, teachers, and community at large. Examine the following questions as you make a plan to invest in new technology.

What skills do your students need to develop in order to succeed in our rapidly changing world? As you consider the variety of equipment available to your Christian school, choose technology that can help your students develop the skills and abilities they need as they advance through school and enter college or the workforce.

How do you want to use technology in your school? Decide whether you want a program that distributes the courses or delivers educational content to supplement current curriculum. Also, consider how the content you select will impact education at your school. Will it deliver a truly engaging educational experience or simply condense a pile of textbooks into one electronic device?

Do you have the resources to implement the technology? Once you know what type of technology you’d like to employ, consider any additional baggage that will accompany it. For example, determine the number of devices you’ll need to purchase, Internet accessibility and wireless network coverage, and power source requirements, as well as safe and secure storage spaces.

Will you develop new policies to accompany the devices? New technology brings new challenges. Reserve time for creating policies that address take-home procedures, damages to devices, Internet supervision, and other topics determined by your school administration.

How will teachers respond to the change? Consider how the teachers at your Christian school will employ the solution you select within their classroom. Will the technology allow them the flexibility to create customized courses and assignments and teach in their own way? Before finalizing your plans, be sure educators have access to any necessary training to help them successfully engage the new technology. Also, examine how the new technology impacts teacher workload. Will it create more work for teachers or allow them to give more time back to their students?

How often is the content updated? One of the benefits of technology is the ability to update educational content without having to invest in new, renovated print curriculum as changes occur. As you contemplate various technological options, determine the importance of regular content updates.

How will you fund the new solution? Check your budget for available funds, apply for grants, weigh the pros and cons of charging student technology fees, and brainstorm other ideas to formulate a payment plan.

Will the solution you select align with your school’s commitment to teaching a Christian worldview? Your school teaches Christian education for a reason. Do your research to avoid compromising your Christian worldview in order to keep up with the latest technological trends.