What if K12 Education could provide a customized learning experience based on each student’s skills, abilities, and preferences to maximize student outcomes...
Author - Robert Dickson
Robert Dickson is the Chief Information Officer for Wichita Public Schools, the largest school district in Kansas. Our District serves 50,000 students with 94 schools and programs and employs nearly 10,000 professionals. Having been hired in 2019 to lead the Department of Information Systems and Technology, and recently received the 2021 Orbie Kansas City CIO of the Year award in Public Sector. I started and now oversee our virtual school, Education Imagine Academy, which achieved maximum capacity of 500 students in its first year and also was awarded the distinction of 2021-22 Microsoft Showcase School in it’s second year.
In addition, through collaboration with Wichita State University, He helped start and now oversee an esports program in all of our secondary schools. Lastly, our instructional training department of Digital Literacy and Citizenship was also brought under my oversight; this initiative brings purpose to the influx of digital devices and infrastructure we supply to the learning process. The District’s mission is to inspire future leaders and empower each student with the 21st century skills and knowledge necessary for success. As a department we have established “Our Wildly Important Goals” to support that mission; these goals are to provide 1) equitable access for all students and staff; 2) personalized, borderless learning opportunities for students, staff, and community; and 3) infrastructure for secure data and a safe environment that contributes to learning and the future of education.
Dickson also works to consult numerous Districts with their strategic technology vision and implementation. Noteworthy accomplishments include his previous District ranking among the “Top Ten” Digital Districts in the nation four years consecutively, leading the first VBlock cloud data center installation in K-12 education and starting the first virtual school in Nebraska history. Dickson was named 2014’s “20 to Watch” from NSBA for innovation and technology integration work, was recently recognized as one of the 2016 Top 30 Technologists, Transformers, and Trailblazers by the Center for Digital Education, as well as 2017 Administrator PLN Award for Exemplary Leadership from the International Society for Technology in Education. 2022 National CIO of the Year Finalist.