Parental Engagement–from vision to practicalities

Last year we worked with the DCSF and a group of schools to record their stories of parental engagement, and what they were doing to build a stronger relationship with parents in their school community. As well as the written case studies on three secondary schools (Blatchington Mill School, Monkseaton High School and Twynham School)…


Are teachers really losing confidence with ICT?

Earlier in the year, BESA reported that teachers confidence with using ICT had fallen by 10%. Which sounds dramatic, and was described by some writers as ‘alarming’. But is it? Well, here’s the data for the last 11 years – from research done by the old DfES until 2004, and data from BESA from 2002….

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£750M of savings in schools – and some ideas to get started

Yesterday, at the SSAT Conference, Ed Balls took to the stage to talk about the need for more efficient resource management in schools. The Guardian kicked off the coverage this morning, with their dramatic headline “Ed Balls tells schools to make £750M savings” (probably NOT the headline he wanted to see as he faced 2,000…


Schools wasting money on ICT – phew, not true

The Guardian today wrote an article about school funding, which was prompted by a new Audit Commission report ‘Valuable lessons’. The message was that “hundreds of millions of pounds are being wasted”. I was a bit alarmed to see that amongst the savings, they were quoted as saying that there’s a potential £110M to be…


The Home Access pilot starts

You may remember that in January, I wrote about the DCSF’s Home Access Programme – providing free home computers for students from disadvantaged families – and reinforcing to all families the importance of access to an Internet-connected computer to support learning. Just in case you missed , here’s the three articles to read – the…

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Analysing data in excel

Here’s a way to help your senior leadership team find out about some of the interesting things you can do in Excel. I used Office 2007 for this, but I’m sure you can achieve the same in Office 2003. I find these kind of training examples are sometimes tedious, unless there’s a real purpose. But…

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Next Generation Learning for 30p a year

Every now and again I come across a bit of information that I’m not sure about. Like this from a written answer in Parliament: The Next Generation Learning campaign sponsored by Becta is designed to raise the awareness of parents or carers, employers and learners of the benefits of the use of technology in education…


9 out of 10 children have Internet at home

According to government research for the DCSF, 90% of pupils have computer and internet access at home. Even amongst primary school children, it was 88%. The research was part of the “Parental Involvement in Children’s Education” report, published in 2007, and page 25 gives the statistics for Internet access. There’s an interesting breakdown by social…


The first day of BETT

Phew, what a day. 6 months of planning, 90 people to co-ordinate with, and suddenly, it arrived. The first day of BETT. As I mentioned earlier in the week, we had a number of exciting things at the show, including a demonstration of the Surface, and a netbook Wall of Cool. I’ll have a few…


Home Access Programme – the basics

I was just starting a blog post to update everybody on the Home Access Programme, and the latest news. But then I stopped. I wondered “Well, do people know what the Home Access Programme is?” – and a couple of quick phone calls to schools and I realised that there’s a big gap between what…