The future of education: technology and digital resources within our schools
When bombs started hitting the UK during World War Two, schools were left without buildings, without desks, and without equipment. But teachers adapted to the challenge by moving lessons to chapels, pubs, and fields.
In the last year, schools were once again left without buildings, this time due to COVID-19. Despite being decades apart, education’s sense of responsibility and dedication to students has not varied. Once more, the education sector has gone above and beyond to provide pupils with the education they deserve – for those pupils who were unable to get to school, the school came to them, by making lessons virtual.
But it hasn’t been without its challenges. We all know how long it takes to plan a school year and changing course at a moments’ notice can be stressful and disruptive. The abrupt transition to remote working has seen various levels of success, which has left us all worried for the long-term effects on child development and learning. What’s more, cancelled exams have piled pressure on teachers to award accurate grades based on what can only be called an interrupted year of teaching. Technology has gone some way to helping education keep in contact with students, but a sudden reliance on tech has caused a certain level of unease and frustration. This has placed all of us in the education sector under scrutiny from parents who have witnessed the difficulties in getting remote learning up and running.
In reality, the education sector did not have the technological foundations we would have hoped for to roll out plans at the drop of a hat. Why would it, when there has never been a need for it before? Not surprisingly, many schools were unprepared for a sudden closure caused by something like a pandemic and whilst we have all been in awe at the resourcefulness of our schools in responding, it is imperative that we learn from the last 12 months – not just to ensure that we are prepared for the next crisis – which next time could be a fire or a flood – but to ensure that the investments made in technology, training and resilience by our schools over the last year is not wasted, but is seen as a catalyst for a whole new approach to education.
In this report, we’ll look at what needs to be done to lay the right foundations, to ensure schools and their teachers have the tools they need to adapt quickly and deliver the level of teaching they strive for.
– John Baskerville, Managing Director RM
RM’s technology business unit enables the improvement of education outcomes around the world through the innovative use of existing and emerging technologies. With a heritage dating back 48 years, supporting schools, teachers and pupils across the globe – from pre-school to higher education – including examination boards, central governments and other professional institutions. rm.com/education
About RM plc
RM’s technology division is part of the listed company RM plc – the £189m turnover British business, with c. 1,837 employees globally. Established in 1973, RM plc’s Group purpose is to enrich the lives of learners worldwide. rm.com
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