Disclaimer: This piece is atypical for Westlake Revelations and should not be taken as an unbiased news story. See end for disclosure and commentary.

LVUSD Hires CITO

In June 2008, the Las Virgenes Unified School District started a project to create a true Technology Strategy for the District covering everything from operations all the way through to the classroom. Funded primarily by the Las Virgenes Educational Foundation along with donated time, the 1000+ man-hour project took about a year to complete, and was presented to the Board of Education in October 2009. The executive summary, and download to the resulting 200-page document is at http://www.xplain.com/lvusd . This strategy was a collaborative effort bringing together information and ideas from hundreds of hours of interviews with teachers, staff, administrators, city governments, parents and students.

The primary recommendation of the strategy was to reorganize the structure of LVUSD to place technology services, support and staff in a position that it could properly serve the needs of the District including its teachers, staff, administrators, parents, and of course, its students. As part of this reorganization, the strategy recommended the creation of a Chief Technology Officer role as part of the cabinet, and proposed ways to implement it.

In recent months, the District developed with an even better plan as to how to create this position that is even more sustainable, yet still maintains the primary objectives. This week, LVUSD announced that it has hired a Chief Instructional Technology Officer (typically called a Chief Technology Officer in the private sector).

Donald Zimring, Superintendent of Schools, announced the appointment of Mr. Phil Scrivano as the District’s first Chief Instructional Technology Officer. Scrivano was selected from a field of more than two-dozen candidates, and a multi-level and varied interview process that included the involvement of not only teachers, administrators, and staff, but also outside private sector perspectives.

Scrivano will fill a four-month vacancy on the District’s senior leadership team following the retirement of Susan Curtis, and the restructuring of the District’s top management that followed. Scrivano is leaving his post at Lightspeed Systems where he served as Vice President of Professional Development. His prior experience includes serving as the Chief Instructional Technology Officer for Kern County, as well as heading up the State’s Fiscal Crisis Management Assistance Team’s (FCMAT) Technology Analysis Unit (conducting management assistance reviews, rebuilding and updating technology in over 70 school districts). He began his career in the classroom as a a sixth grade teacher for seven years, served as an assistant principal, and was selected as one of the first State Telementors. Mr. Scrivano and his family will be relocating to here from Bakersfield, CA, and is expected to start sometime in November.

[Ed. Note: As someone involved in the creation of the technology strategy as well as the CITO job definition and hiring process, I am looking forward to Phil Scrivano assuming the CITO role. Scrivano brings a unique mix of educational and private sector experience, as well as a deep understanding of not only technology, but how to use it, explain it, teach it, and support it. He’s familiar with LVUSD through his efforts at FCMAT, and I even referred to his work in LVUSD’s Technology Strategy. Phil’s desire to come back to Education, along with what I believe is an understanding of how to use technology to strategically benefit the District, makes him an ideal candidate for the position. – Neil Ticktin]

Disclosure: Neil Ticktin, and his company Xplain Corporation, led the creation of the LVUSD Technology Strategy on behalf of LVUSD. And, at the request of the District, Neil was involved in the creation of the job description, resume review and second interviews for the position of Chief Instructional Technology Officer.