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Robert Dillon

Dillon, Robert

Dr. Robert Dillon serves the students and community of the Affton School District as Director of Technology and Innovation. Prior to this position, he served as a teacher and administrator in public schools throughout the Saint Louis area. Dr. Dillon has a passion to change the educational landscape by building excellent engaging schools for all students. He looks for ways to ignite positive risk taking in teachers and students and release trapped wisdom into the system by growing networks of inspired educators. Dr. Dillon serves Secretary of Innovation for Connected Learning, a Saint Louis based organization designed to reshape professional development to meet today's needs. Dr. Dillon has had the opportunity to speak throughout the country at local, state, and national conferences as well as share his thoughts and ideas in a variety of publications. His first book, Engage, Empower, Energize: Leading Tomorrow's Schools Today, is now available. He is supported by his wife and two daughters, and spends the remainder of his time running and cycling.


Areas of expertise
  • Connected Education
  • Instructional Leadership
  • 1:1 device implementation

Workshops

  • The Learning Journey: Learning is a journey, and the relationship between individual schools and their learning partners are the cornerstone to generating positive change over time. A learning journey with your school begins with a visit to the school to conduct an informal needs assessment by meeting with school leaders and the school based leadership team to discuss needs and gain an insight about the culture and programming of a school as well as the school’s vision for change. Next, customized program of training, coaching, and feedback is developed specific to the needs of the school. Then, the work with students, teachers, staff, and community begins as to build capacity of the entire school community. Finally, additional extension work is available, both on-site and through consultation, to truly leverage change.
  • Supporting Change as a Digital Leader: The role of the principal in school is a complex and dynamic one. Leading change to help school practitioners embrace not only technology in teaching but in assessment, grading, and outcomes can be a challenge. Systemic, meaningful change from an environment of rote learning to the collaborative nature in a 1:1 environment can be met with resistance. With his experience as an implementation change agent, Dr. Dillon served as coach, mentor and guide for school leaders and School Improvement Teams embarking on this change. The technology integration process is filled with road bumps that can set back the process by years. Dr. Dillon has helped multiple schools avoid these missteps on the road to higher achievement through excellence technology integration.
  • Implementing 1:1 Technology: Implementing 1:1 technology can be an overwhelming task for school leaders, staff, students, and parents. Through a series of progressive and personalized training sessions, school staff learn effective strategies for maximizing student engagement through the use of portable electronic devices. Training sessions are constructed in collaboration with the principal and the school-based leadership team. As a part of this work, a needs assessment for change is conducted as a non-evaluative, data based starting point for decision-making. From there, customized professional development is crafted as well as addition on-line resources and opportunities are offered.
  • Executive Coacing: Building capacity and sustaining meaningful change requires ongoing levels of feedback, coaching, and support. Staff members progress at varying levels of implementation in the change process. Through meaningful, non-evaluative feedback, coaching and personalized support, even the most reluctant teacher will grow as their capacity for innovative process is enriched.
  • Maximizing Learning: Best Practices in Feedback and Grading: With instructional strategies that embrace innovation and creativity, traditional grades have become cumbersome and outdated. Learners involved with this work will redefine and realign grading practices to newly defined expectations for learning. Topics such as core beliefs in learning and success, standards-based grading practices, student based digital portfolios, and student-led conferences will help schools better align student assessment to 21st century expectations.

What People are Saying

“Dr. Dillon has worked with two of the schools in our district on integrating technology.  He not only has though-provoking presentations, but also allows time for teams to brainstorm, plan, and design strategies that result in long term impact in the classroom.  His approach is well-grounded and realistic for schools.  He is a dynamic speaker so he also has no difficulty keeping an audience engaged throughout a learning session.  Teachers and staff leave with immediate take-aways, steps for incremental growth, without being overwhelmed to implement change.”

Director of Title 1
Guilford County Schools, NC

“Dr. Dillon is a dynamic and engaging speaker, providing educators will experiences and learning that move beyond traditional keynote presentations. Dr. Dillon understands learning at a core level, ensuring that he turns the audience into active learning participants. Making learning authentic and applicable when facilitating workshops is one of the reasons Dr. Dillon is so highly sought after as a speaker and workshop leader. He has a talent for connecting people and resources in ways that allow learning to continue far beyond the hours of his sessions, and he is able to build deep relationships with participants in surprisingly short periods of time. Dr. Dillon is not only an expert in his field, but an expert in pushing even the most hesitant learners to think different and take risks in the days and weeks that follow his sessions.”

Lead Middle School Teacher
Patterson Park Public Charter School, MD