Thankyou for opportunity to talk to you tonight and briefly outline the development plan for ICT at Kellett.
Four elements to our development in the forthcoming year.
Before looking at the plan I want to contextualize where Kellett is in terms of ICT development and discuss how things have changed since the last time I spoke to you in the year 07/08 When I arrived at Kellett ICT was the icing on the cake, it was taught in the ICT suite, was distinct from what the class teacher did and was purely an add-on. Not just at Kellett, it was similar in most schools. If ICT was used within the classroom it was largely as a presentation tool with Word and Powerpoint being the mainstays of our students ICT experience along with internet research. At it’s best, ICT was used to augment and reinforce taught concepts but this was rare.
Three years later and things have moved somewhat, ICT is now more embedded (in the middle) within the curriculum as a whole. Most teachers realise that they are also ICT teachers and that they should use ICT within their day-to-day activities. The low level presentation type activities still occur, and the additional uses of ICT to augment the taught curriculum are more wide-ranging. For the student, there remain inconsistencies with regard to their ICT experience, depending on the competence and willingness of the teacher they are assigned. Some teachers have taken things further and have become truly innovative in their approach and have helped Kellett to enhance it’s reputation within the international school community; the work that Katrina Hall has carried out with mobile devices and Katie Hitchcox with GBL are two particularly noteworthy examples. Whilst this period has seen a larger amount of time utilising technology for the majority of our students, in terms of discrete ICT, the timetable allocations have been reduced; KS now receive 25% less time and some of KS1 have been reduced by 50%. Meanwhile, in the outside world, there has been a technology revolution. Web2.0 tools have completely changed the way we view presentations, media delivery has adapted itself to utilise broadband infrastructures and social networking platforms have radically changed the way people interact with each other. Within many international schools this revolution has resulted in technology being moved out of the computer room and into the classroom as a more fundamental tool for demonstrating and enhancing student creativity and understanding.
Our next step, and the aim of our Dev Plan is to move to this stage. Purposeful, authentic ICT is embedded within the curriculum in such a way that the technology is “like oxygen, ubiquitous, necessary and invisible” - rather like a teacher would expect a student to have a pencil and use it as and when necessary, the same should be true of technology. Our expectation is that teachers will be able to achieve this state. Ideally this would happen seamlessly, but due to rapid pace of change, varying comfort levels and huge workloads, the majority of teachers would benefit from the support of a technology facilitator.
The creation of an ICT Facilitator post at Kellett is the key aspect of our ICT Development Plan and influences all the other areas. The position of facilitator is well documented within Asia and Hong Kong. Indeed, the majority of schools with reputations for excellence within technology have adopted facilitation in some way or form. As a result of discussion with colleagues I was able to present a full job description to SMT last year. In practical terms what will this mean for Kellett? There are timetabling implications. ICT will no longer be taught as a discrete subject but will be expected to be delivered within the wider curriculum. There are planning implications. A large amount of concepts and ideas and skills now carried out within ICT will be shifted and embedded within the taught curriculum. This will have huge benefits in terms of continuity and allow for deeper understanding through the use of technology. For example, within Mathematics, students will be able to learn about tessellation, rotation and transformation through tools such as Google Sketchup or Scratch, rather than waiting for one session delivered on a weekly basis. The ICT lab will still be utilised and there will be times, particularly for students at the top of KS2 when lessons will be delivered in the same format as this year.
The pace of change within ICT is such that staff development and training needs cannot be effectively met with the ‘once a year’ model. Professional development needs to ongoing, relevant and ‘just in time’ i.e. providing solutions to enhance the learning process. With the increasing implementation of the ISTE Standards for both students and teachers throughout the school as well as the impending launch of our VLE the need for ongoing training is extremely pressing. A major aspect of facilitation is that time will be dedicated for the facilitator to work with staff as well as students. The facilitator will attend planning sessions on a regular basis and ensure that the latest technologies and ideas are embedded within the curriculum, and then support staff in the delivery of their plans. The key to successful facilitation is to foster an atmosphere of collaboration with teachers, to investigate models of full collaboration, coaching, mentoring, team teaching and joint assessment.
Innovation, Creativity & Excellence – we are beginning to forge a reputation for innovation; Kellett teachers this year presented at the HK21stC Learning conference and our work has been noted online by various ed-tech leaders. We now need to capitalise on that and ensure that all students have access to innovative work, such as our P2 students, who’ve recently completed their hugely successful Literacy module on the Nintendo DS. We need to case study our work properly and allow for staff to reflect upon the differences that technology has made to learning. Staff need to monitor and engage with the global teaching community to enhance and develop their own practice. Innovative projects; Continue expansion of GBL, students continue to produce media and publish work, Art/Animation project, mobile learning initiative etc
To extend and engage community – Kellett becomes proactive in use of new technologies to engage with wider community, social media, mobile applications, online forums etc. The VLE, when introduced is seen as an essential aspect of parent school communication and replaces outdated, paper-based methods of school comms e.g. bus notes Technology and learning is a partnership that involves all parties; students, teachers and parents – we have an obligation to work with the community ensure there is an understanding of the benefits and issues involved with technology. To meet our objectives monthly coffee mornings will be held to support parents on aspects such as e-safety, social networking and the use of our VLE.
Green Kellett – Technology has a huge role to play in the move towards a greener Kellett – ICT can lead the way both in the audit of our current position and in the provision of alternatives to our current practices. We will be producing an audit of our costs and look at proposals to improve our environmental position – I suspect that most of your companies have some kind of environmental sustainability policy and we need to develop the same – we need to look at other international schools here in HK who have undertaken carbon footprint audits and who have signed Cap and Trade agreements and look at similar ideas. Whilst the paper-less school may be a reality for some, the paper-more school that we have become needs turning around – staff, students and parents need to be shown the possibilities that digital portfolios afford and encouraged to move towards e-comms. We need to look at the culture of the school and provide all members of the community the opportunity to adopt a greener approach. I believe that ICT can be at the forefront of this work and that we can help convey a vital message.
So these are the four strands that I firmly believe will continue to ensure that Kellett provides a relevant, authentic technology experience. We are not preparing our students for the real world, many of them are already in it, using technology as a communication and observation tool – they are already prosumers. The proposal is ambitious and demanding, and will be hard work for all involved as it challenges some long held beliefs about technology within schools We have to prepare our students for their future, not our past and I believe that our proposed development will do that. I also believe that whilst acknowledging our past, we must concede that we are no longer ‘the little school that did’, we are, in fact a big, dual campus international through school and our technology vision needs to reflect that.
ICT @Kellett Development Plan 2010
ICT Development Plan – Four Strands Facilitation Model Community Engagement Innovation, Creativity & Excellence Green Not Red Kellett