Nicky Morgan: Technology key to reducing teacher workload

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“I am convinced that educational technologies must be at the heart of this”

Talking of the power of education technology, Nicky Morgan quoted the BESA report that many schools have inadequate connectivity. She cited a number of programmes the current government have been involved in to address this.

She said the pace of change makes it difficult for people of her generation to keep up, quoting the work of Mark Prensky to justify this. For many teachers, she said, this means support is needed, and she have examples of some of the programmes and financial incentives the government has put in place in partnership with the tech sector.

This morning she announced a new programme to put industry experts in to schools to train and support schools. Another £3.5 million will go into supporting the implementation of the new computing curriculum.

“The next stage is to raise our sights far further”

The education technology action group have recommended reforming school accountability. Morgan said we need to consider how big data can be used to give parents and students choice. She suggested loosening up tax data so the population could see the ‘true worth’ of different subjects.

Assessment and reporting were another ETAG area. ETAG recommended moving towards technology enabled examinations. Morgan said she wanted to find a way to use technology to improve the flow of information for parents.

Finally, she said technology should play ‘a pivotal role’ in reducing teacher workload. Planning and marking have been revealed by the teacher workload survey as contributing hugely to this. She said apps are available to assist teachers to mark and plan, reducing duplication in planning and spreading good practice from school to school.

Some schools are developing their own apps that build in and streamline the planning process and spread this practice to schools across the world. However, there are other aspects to reducing workload as well, which the government will take action on soon.

She also said there is a huge potential of technology for learning for children.

She quoted Steve Jobs about misfits and promoted the “people crazy enough to want to change the world” in moving forward education.

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