Dr Jane Hofmeyr: Executive Director, Independent Schools Association Southern Africa (ISASA)
It is common cause that the teaching and learning in the 21st century will have to be very different from the traditional forms that are still alive and well in most schools today. Many experts have outlined the changes that schools need to initiate to meaningfully engage and challenge what Friedrich and his colleagues (2011) are calling “Generation C” because they are connected, communicating, computerised and always clicking. Equally, the skills that students will need to meet the challenges of life and work in the 21st century have been spelt out.
In the independent school context, however, there are two additional observations that I would like to offer, which from my 2010 visit to New Zealand schools and the ISNZ conference, I believe are relevant to both our and your independent school sector.
Ian Yorston Head of digital strategy at Radley College explains why investment in ICT doesn't necessarily pay.
If you had to spend a million pounds, you'd really hope to have something to show for it. Yet most schools have spent at least that on ICT and get nothing obvious in return — aside from a few hundred PCs running Windows XP and a handful of smart gadgets.
Actually, it's worse than that because, despite spending all this money — and through no real fault of their own — schools have finished up at the wrong end of the ICT revolution.
Every business in the world has invested in ICT. They have done so either to save money or to improve productivity, or both. By and large, they have seen good returns on their investment: business systems have improved.
A number of businesses have used smart technology to transfer their work flows on to their own customers. Many supermarkets have persuaded us to scan our own items as we walk around their stores. The airlines have convinced us to book online, check-in online and assign our own seats.
Schools are different. They're different because they have invested millions of pounds in ICT for no obvious cost saving whatsoever. Of course, they have acquired plenty of additional overheads — a new ICT department, complete with technicians, network managers and yet another head of department. Read more..
Portabuild helps Christchurch students get back to school:Tim Blake, General Manager Business Development, Spanbild
The 22nd February 2011 earthquake in Christchurch created enormous disruption across a city just starting to recover from the first seismic shock of the previous September.
For many of the city’s schools, far more significant damage to building and grounds meant students, teachers and parents would face another lengthy delay, just as they were starting out on a new school year.
Determined to avoid further disruption, Christ’s College took a novel approach to ensure students of one of the city’s leading secondary schools could continue their education as quickly as possible.
Forum: For Heads and Senior Managers A two-day feast of fast turnaround presentations by Heads and senior managers at this year’s Forum left delegates with new insights and fresh ideas to take back to their schools.
Presentation topics around the theme of Efficiencies ranged from Harnessing the Power of Private IT Devices to Supporting Teachers New to the Profession and Reconnecting with your Community.
Speakers were allocated around 20 minutes to explore their particular “efficiency”, with a 10 minute small-group discussion to follow.
Waihi School:Mr Grant Hamilton has tendered his resignation as Headmaster of Waihi School, effective at the end of 2011. In January 2012 Grant heads to Christchurch to join the staff at Christ’s College as Housemaster in School House.
We would like to acknowledge the contribution Grant has made to The Association of the Heads of Independent Schools and thank him for the time he gave to serve on the AHIS Executive.