Chief Technology Officer (CTO)

Established in 1998, the MSBO Voluntary Certification Program supports the ongoing professional development of school business officials. The program is a mark of distinction that reflects professional achievement and demonstrates a person’s dedication to his/her profession.

Benefits of Chief Technology Officer certification:

The Chief Technology Officer (CTO) certification:
1. provides access to information and training that is specific to Michigan law and regulation; and
2. provides a basis for advancing professionalism of School Technology Managers in Michigan schools.

The CTO Program

MSBO certification courses provide a great deal of information in a short time. Most courses are “bulleted” information rather than in-depth training. They are intended to cover major points about their respective topics, offer an opportunity for questions and discussion, and provide resource information for future use.

Our recommended beginning course for Chief Technology Officer Certification is Technology in Education. Although anyone may benefit from this or other individual certification courses, the full program is generally intended for School Technology Managers in their first 1-5 years of employment. However, any person employed in school technology who meets the stated requirements may receive Chief Technology Officer Certification. There is no requirement for holding a particular position in a school district.


This program and the courses listed have been created and reviewed by the Professional Development Committee of MSBO and MACUL. An applicant for certification must be a member of MSBO, have one year of hardware technology support, and hold at least one of the following:

  • Bachelor’s Degree
  • A current related industry certification (or coursework equivalent to a current certification) and five or more years of Chief Technology Officer experience

In some circumstances courses from other sources may be counted toward MSBO certification. Please be aware that some courses and/or requirements may change. MSBO and the committees that created this program continue to evaluate and make minor modifications as deemed appropriate.

MSBO’s Certification Program Benefits:

  • Provides access to information needed to succeed in your job
  • Offers practical overviews of key areas of law, regulations and practices
  • Identifies resources for in-depth and additional information that may be utilized at a later time
  • Assures a quality curriculum is developed and monitored by the MSBO Professional Development Committee
  • Uses experienced practitioners to teach classes
  • Offers seminars at regular intervals and reasonable prices
  • Uses adult learning principles and provides a learning environment where colleagues can share experiences and information


Contact Courtney Byam at 517.327.5937;
or Debbie Kopkau at 517.327.2587.

Chief Technology Officer (CTO) Course Descriptions

Team Leadership (3 hours): Learn how to match your leadership style with the culture of the organization. Matching leadership style to the cultural landscape will allow you to increase your productivity, decrease communication problems and strengthen your conflict management skills.

Technology in Education (6 hours): A basic overview of technology in schools. It is recommended as one of the first classes in the program. It covers the following topics: Makeup of the technology team, managing technology in the classroom, training, working with consultants and vendors, business office technology, cost of ownership and outsourcing your technology services.

Technology in the Classroom (6 hours): School technology directors need to know the traditional technology management skills and be “tuned in” to the unique environment that is the modern classroom. Become familiar with technology and curriculum standards that are the driving force for the tools and support needed from tech staff in classrooms. Tools, ranging from virtual classrooms to mobile devices and online assessment, will be included Chief Technology Officer (CTO) Course Descriptions in this discussion, along with sharing of information about how to leverage resources to budget and support classroom needs.

Technology Policies (3 hours): Get an overview of the policies and procedures that should be in place, including Acceptable Use Policies (AUP), network policies, e-mails, filtering of network, listservs, laptops, copyright, licensing, and software selection policies. Understand asset management, Web publishing, and the Children’s Internet Protection Act (CIPA.)

Time Management (replaces Working With Contractors) (3 hours): Become a more effective manager by budgeting your time, identifying and assigning priorities, and establishing and achieving daily goals.

Vision, Strategic Planning & Implementation (formerly Implementation & Planning) (6 hours): Learn the planning process for technology, including: creating a technology plan, integrating school improvement and district improvement plans, forecasting future needs, and implementing new systems. Technology planning, and tips and methods for evaluation of new and existing technology will be reviewed. The emerging use of distance learning technologies and other professional development opportunities for staff will be addressed. An overview of project management including the Michigan laws, bidding requirements, electrical and construction codes, plan review requirements, and practical implications of working with contractors on technology integration projects and processes will be shared.

Wrap-up/Ethics (2 hours): Celebrate completion of your certification program! Reflect on what you have learned and your role in the educational process and your school district. This class can be taken only if you are two classes or less from completing your certification (not counting the Wrap-Up/Ethics Session).

Elective (6 hours): Any certification class that is outside of your current certification track and not required for this track.

Total class time is 59 hours. Continuing Education hours are 90 hours within a five-calendar-year period.

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