Technology is changing the world and will inevitably have a huge impact on the world our children grow up into. But as technology becomes an increasingly integral part of education, so does the challenge for schools to save money, spend it wisely and use ICT more effectively.
Developing an ICT strategy which empowers teachers and learners, creates tangible improvements and fuels innovation both in and out of the classroom needn't cost the earth, but it does need to start with a clear plan of what you actually want to achieve.
Think about the particular challenges in your school or group of schools; what have school inspectors recommended you work on? And what kind of apps, devices and tools do your teachers like to use? Your ICT strategy should fully support your teachers' pedagogy and become an intrinsic part of your Strategic Development Plan or School Improvement Plan, rather than standing alone as a separate objective.
To achieve these objectives, you need to develop a forward-looking approach to the management, development and integration of ICT in your school and your ICT support team should have the knowledge and experience to suggest and support the right solutions for you, as well as an awareness of how each of these technologies works most effectively in an educational context.
Through focusing on the pedagogical outcomes to which your school aspires and using them to shape your ICT strategy, precious budgets can be spent in a manner that provides the maximum return.
Major cost-effective technological trends in education - such as the introduction and embedding of cloud-based applications and services - place ICT back under the control of your senior leadership team, and provide significant opportunities to cut your costs while improving collaboration and efficiency around your school.
For more advice, insights and tips, check out the other blogs in our Budget Solutions series at www.rm.com/blog