Thanks Personal background (if not covered introducing me) Belief in eportfolios and commitment to planting, nurturing seeds and see them multiply Connections with Australia Algae and plankton bloom Fertile time for eportfolios in the NZ school sector Data informed estimate: More than half the schools and 10% of the students and teachers Encouraging results, all things considered
750,000 students in 2,600 schools, rolls ranging from <10 to >3,000 students, 1/3 <100, and 60,000 teachers 1989 and Tomorrows Schools: Self-managing; high levels of autonomy yet accountable to local community; minimal data collected by or (ICT) services provided from the Ministry of Education; Short, high level, conceptual national curriculum with balance between Key Competencies and Learning Areas Established investment in assessment for learning and supporting the teacher as a professional Primary sector now have National Standards but no national testing
Forever in primary: Student files or folios or folders Forever in secondary: Art and technical drawing Pioneers with ICT (1980's/early '90's): Early collections of electronic files and pictures Mid '90's': Ian Fox then at Bucklands Beach Intermediate where they developed the “Learning to Learn” model Carol Moffatt founded the ICT unit in the Ministry of Education and launched ICT PD UltraLab South / CORE Education and elearning conferences based on Victorian Navcon model Mark Treadwell's small steps
From 2008/9, as part of the Managed Learning Environment work program Visits, listening, reading thinking, debate Consultation via an open Google Group Publication of guidelines (some copies here and available online ) So what did we decide to pursue?
To seed, nurture and spread reflective practice On the learning of anything really Not too hung up on purpose/flavour of portfolio, as a good tool, learner and teacher can support all of them (and they are often mixed) Gathering and sharing the evidence of learning, of the process not just the end result (evidence being the link to the photo of the four courts in Dublin) Can “marry up” with Student Record Transfer , a mechanism to move the student record (including assessment results) from the student management system in one school to that in another.
The system had to honour our commitment for the learner to “own” their portfolio. We sought to increase learning and mature the learner by moving the focus of control Inevitably, this approach has risks We also wanted to ensure that the same portfolio stayed available to learners as they changed schools Difficult to achieve in a self-managing system, with institution-centric accountability and where each school procures their own software
To support the points just made and as a Balance between what is best done at the centre (and once for everyone) and at the edge/chalk face Seeking efficiency and freedom Allows for collaboration even when learners are in different schools (and other education institutions) Important enabler for the evidence of the learning to stay with student (and staff) when moving to a new school (130,000 movements each year)
Open as in Accessible to all Standards for portfolio movement in and out of platform, especially given the eportfolio scene in the NZ tertiary sector Open source to maximise flexibility and minimise vendor capture School participation in investment/enhancement monies Foster the sharing of openly licensed works (links to CC Aotearoa , DigitalNZ and OER)
Ministry settled on and still actively supports one system - MyPortfolio , a SaaS instance of Mahara Even with hindsight it has proved a good choice Ministry invests in product enhancements as well as fees for support services and training 1,200 schools, 70,000 users, 8,000 groups Although not too worried on the age of the learner, we have a design target of Yr 7 up
Yet we respected and encouraged many other approaches (see guidelines) A necessity to respect school freedom of choice in a self-managing system and the right thing to do to change practice for the better. All approaches have merit and all have limitations Striking a balance is really difficult
Yes, there is something wonderful emerging / being constructed but sometimes one can only see the scaffolding Incredible growth in number and now in depth also (as evidenced in what is being shared and celebrated) Learners changing schools / institutions and want to keep on “eportfolioing” Sometimes I worry about the lack of active sponsorship from the Ministry, even though this is now not my responsibility
Guidelines Personal credibility of Ministry staff, including a national road show with thousands of attendees Good software ( Mahara ) and a great vendor ( Catalyst IT ) The price :-) Taster sessions and online community support Lead practitioners (Heath, Pascale and Kristina as facilitators) Followed by pioneering schools (e.g. Tawa Intermediate, Kedley Intermediate, Ross Intermediate, St Peter's College, Albany Senior High School, etc) So, what are we still wrestling with?
Where should we put the walls (for privacy, security, safety, etc) and the gates (for connections, sharing, feedback, collaboration, community, etc)? What other software should we connect to (e.g. LMS, Google Apps for Education, single sign on services, etc) Who should be allowed in? For how long? At what price?
Ongoing discussion on whether the younger or the old learners should go first (and let their experiences inform the rest) I think I now believe it should be the older learners, the teachers Useful to them for different purposes (reflection, document professional development, registration, appraisal, professional learning, etc) Experience helps efficiency and effectiveness when students join in As well as growing confidence to let students loose in this permissive environment
We reached out to: Other education organisations such as PD providers, consultants, trainers Teacher training / Colleges of Education, starting with Niki Davis at Canterbury. EC centres for teachers only, as they have the same registered teacher criteria
Sector change takes five years to bed in and we are only 2 -3 in to this one Easy to cultivate beginner use but hard to support this to be deep, effective change Students and staff moving school can be effective torch bearers Schools are incredibly busy places, with little capacity to pick up a new, optional something So watch this space
Being fee-free (not to be confused with fully funded) has been necessary (but insufficient) to the success But it is not cheap for the funder, especially given the lack of experience/understanding of providing SaaS to hundreds of thousands of schools Issues with “he who pays says” Will Ministry support go the distance to see effective change to teaching and learning?
For the NZ school sector We have laid a good corner stone and a solid foundation and today has mostly been about looking back However, most of my job involves looking forward, longing for what might be. I am optimistic about the future of eportfolio and MyPortfolio specifically. For Australia: I believe the model could transplant to another jurisdiction and welcome any (offline) conversations on opportunities
1. eportfolios in the Paul Seiler, ePortfolio Forum, Sydney 27 th New Zealand school sectorSeptember 2012 , Presentation CC-BY 3.0 – Contact at firstname.lastname@example.org://www.flickr.com/photos/gsfc/4690802945/