Spotlight

Superintendents’ Blogs Worth Checking

by Mark Stock

These blogs maintained by superintendents each demonstrate a different aspect to consider when thinking about starting or maintaining your blog.

www.PrincipalsPage.com
Mike Smith, superintendent of the Oakland Community Unit School District 5 in Oakland, Ill., shows a wonderful sense of humor on his blogsite, drawing on his day-to-day experiences. Note how he uses family and school events to bring out his personality. This provides an opportunity for readers to develop a connection with the leader. Smith hosts the blog on a separate server and has purchased his own domain name, www.PrincipalsPage.com.

http://iss.schoolwires.com/iss/site
This superintendent blog, run by Terry Holliday, superintendent of the Iredell-Statesville Schools in Statesville, N.C., tries to engage parents and keep them informed of current school issues. This blog is a good example of communicating about formal school issues directly to the public. It is maintained as part of the district’s website.

http://park16.blogspot.com
This blog, titled simply “Superintendent’s Blog,” is run by Superintendent Robert Lewandowski in County School District Park 16 in Meteetse, Wyo. Lewandowski’s blog is clean, simple and easy to read. His blog is eclectic in style, posting a variety of personal opinions and school announcements. Notice how his choice of web address is easy to remember and therefore find on the Internet. Lewandowski is using free blogger software, which is why you see the name “blogspot” in the web address.

http://kcsdblog.wordpress.com
This blog is run by Superintendent Frank Morgan of the Kershaw County School District in Camden, S.C. I chose this blog because it is a good example of a school district blog with fresh content daily. Also note the sidebar links to all the schools and the district’s website. This blog is hosted by WordPress and uses their software.

In addition, I maintain or contribute to several blogs:
http://drmarkstock.com
Known as the Stock Mark Report, this is considered my personal blog site. I generally discuss education issues but have been known to post vacation photos and talk about other subjects. I use InMotion hosting services and have purchased the domain name drmarkstock.com. This is important if you want to own the name and be able to transfer the content over to other hosting services without creating a new web address.

http://hopefoundation.org/hope/blog
This is the HOPE Foundation’s blog, What’s Working in Schools. I blog for the HOPE Foundation, and this blog is a good example of a professional application for blogging. The purpose is to help bring awareness to the school improvement and professional development services provided by the nonprofit HOPE Foundation. The foundation provides its own hosting but uses free Word Press software.

www.aasaconference.blogspot.com
Taking Stock of the AASA Conference is AASA’s blog at the National Conference on Education. This is an example of a professional conference blog intended to provide a personal look at the events and activities during an annual event. The intended audience is AASA members who are not able to attend but want to follow along. This is a free blog hosted by Blogger and using their software.

http://blogs.edweek.org/edweek/LeaderTalk
This blog for education leaders by education leaders is known as LeaderTalk. It is a great example of a group blog. LeaderTalk is hosted by Education Week and uses Movable Type for its software.