This applies to *any* sizeable change and how it is planned for and funded ...
This applies to *any* sizeable change and how it is planned for and funded ...
And to be honest, some people aren't raising concerns ... they are saying they won't do it ... not explaining why and once again they risk labelling IT Support as the people who block things. As for solutions to manage devices ... it all depends on your setup in your school ... there are good blogs out there about this with a range of experiences and there are also a number of commercial firms who deal with this. I've already covered a number of options in the past (as have many others) so the blind "It can't be done" should be "It is a pig" or even "it works best with this sort of scenario", depending on whether people are going to put in the work. It might be they *can't* put in the work due to lack of training, lack of resources, lack of staff, lack of money ... and they may be hampered by SLT who are in awe of the next big shiny idea.
There is always a way for those willing to find it. The way is only blocked for or by those who *choose* to block it.
True and I would thank you for this post but for some reason the button is missing.
GrumbleDook (17th July 2012)
It shouldn't be a big problem though. Proper change management, decent levels of communication and input from *all* the relevant people should negate that. However each of those steps carries their own difficulties which adds up - change management is great unless it's done half sharp, communication and input is fantastic when all the right people are communicated with in the first place; in a school, those can often be a nightmare.
Given the right timeframes, the correct levels of expectations from all involved and the will to at least do the best possible, any issues should be easily overcome.
* Disclaimer. Yes. I am green and niaive. I also bite, so people taking advantage of that get bitten.
In many schools, change management is the process of management screaming 'pretty' and demanding to change everything to the latest shiny bs that will change everything despite being a slight revision. How many times is every little change going to be a revolution. Does no one pay attention to anything anymore.
Has anyone else read this report on the Longfield academy in Kent, they use iPads extensively in a 1 per student approach. I have visited here a few times, and it is impressive to say the least.
It is worth a read, although I do have to say I find it slightly bias with some of the comments made.
judge for yourself here
Naace: The iPad as a Tool For Education - a case study
There's always downsides - first thing that comes to my mind is if they're used extensively (enough to warrant 1:1) then is it diminishing from other important skills such as writing, manually doing mathematics etc?
There's a school near here doing 1:1, I'd certainly like to see it in action before really making judgement on it. Regardless, we've a fair few teachers who have bought their own and find them very useful indeed, and after buying some ourselves we are hovering on the idea of using them as teaching tools. We're fully aware of what they can and can not be expected to do, workload will be no greater than laptops (maintenance is zero, updating is a little more of a pain unless teachers are given full responsibility of it etc). There's plenty of tools to lock things down, track where they are (Configurator, Meraki) however other than insurance reasons I think it's less work/bother to leave them in the hands of the staff.
Last edited by synaesthesia; 17th July 2012 at 08:50 AM.
I went to interview yesterday and this was brought up there. The school has trialed iPads with a select number of teachers (about a third in the school) and the response has been mixed. Some love them, some gave them back as they didn't have the time, desire or inclination to do anything with them.
What I think this highlighted was that any technology can work in a school, so long as there is sufficient willingness to make it work among the staff. If your particular school is like the half that like the iPads at this school then you're likely to be more like Zag. If your staff are like the half that gave them back, then you're more likely get no-where with them.
I think what @GrumbleDook is doing is trying to get people to look past their 'bedded in' ideas - to stop people from doing what some are doing which is going 'ZOMG! iPads are evil!' or 'Windows 8 will solve everything!!'. Instead, the technologies should be looked at in the context of your individual school's needs, and then the issues looked at from there.
Personally, I'm still entirely dubious of tablets in education. There are many, many issues that need resolving before I'd be happy to jump in with them.
I'm going to move this into the Netbooks PDA and Phones forum now. There is far to much valuable comment on here to leave it lingering in the General section.
The same goes for most types of technology. Some people will swear by it, some people will hate it, and there will always unfortunately be techies, NMs and SLT members who are hardened fanboys of ProductX or in the same breath, would die before ProductY is allowed in the school. That's before even looking at what they can or can't do.
The problem I have have with iPads is (in my experience) it has evoked the oft repeated strategic IT management mistake: let's get something fashionable in and shoehorn it into our operations. Of course this is is not the fault of Apple per se (after all it is a fact that iPads are aimed squarely at the consumer market and not designed for the enterprise) but the desire by management to appear 'on trend' and up to date without fully thinking the impact through. If my school came to me and said we want to achieve x,y and z, and we looked at all the options and their impact and the result was that iPads were the best solution then fine, I have no problem with that. But that process needs to be followed.
I am not an Apple hater, just a hater of poor decision making.
We ran an experiment with netbooks, issuing them to two tutor groups, one in year 8 and 9 and one teaching group. What we didn't do was put much (any!) effort into changing the culture; effectively we just parachuted in 90 net books and said "get on with it then". The experiment ran for 1 year in the yr 9 group, 2 years in the year 8 group and the teacher still uses the netbooks, 3 years on (mostly for internet research type activities). The tutor groups showed no significant (2 sigma) impact on results, one was down slightly and one showed a slight gain in maths.
We did this against a background of clamour about how devices were transforming education (claims made by the likes of the eLearning foundation). It's not that I don't believe that their studies are true in that they show significant impacts on results, but they fail to isolate the cause as being down to devices rather than the cultural change that accompanied them. The schools going down the route of a device per student also went through exceptional periods of cultural change with huge amount of effort put into helping teachers adapt to and adopt the new technology in their lessons. The key question for me in that is what would the transformation have been like if that effort was put into some other aspect of the teaching or general school culture.
I'm somewhat cynical of the "mmm, nice shiny new iPad/Mac/Andriod/voting devices/VLE/IWB" enthusiasm that floods out of individual teachers from time to time. It's not that I believe any of them wouldn't work, rather I believe transformative power of such technologies is as a pivot around which cultural change takes place. The technology itself is almost irrelevant.
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