EdTech is not a silver bullet


EdTech is not a silver bullet

29 Apr ’20 Digital Learning Teaching 0

The DfE has the “tech giants” on side and EdTech Demonstrators Programme (twenty institutions) behind it’s disconnected media press release.

As schools, parents and children adapt to the changing environment we are all faced with, it is vital that we provide them with the right support so young people are able to continue their education.

No issue there.

Through close partnership with the education sector and two of the world’s biggest tech companies, we are working to ensure that children can continue their studies while they are at home.

The full stop appears to be in the wrong place. “…continue their studies while they are at home and when schools reopen.”

Laptops and tablets for vulnerable and disadvantaged pupils are on their way and will begin being distributed in weeks, enabling those most in need to access online resources.

I understand the importance to address inequality. However, everyone working with technology in education continually underlines the importance of strategy beyond connectivity and hardware. Beyond now, to now (implement and integrate) and tomorrow (iterate and innovate).

As the DfE’s own publication Realising the potential of technology in education – communicated.

To borrow from that publication, we could have received a more empowering, leadership message. A message committed to helping “teachers and education leaders capitalise on technology to help reduce teacher workload, foster greater efficiencies, remove barriers to education and ultimately drive improvements in educational outcomes.”

I’ll draw you attention to page 4 and the very first highlighted quotation.

EdTech is not a silver bullet… What we should concentrate on is when and in which ways it is best deployed to support these processes.

Dominic Norrish – Group Director of Technology, United Learning Trust

Added 21:33pm

After posting earlier today and reflecting, there may well be a case for saying that our solutions to the school during the pandemic and promotion of edtech under these circumstances may have accentuated inequalities rather than reduced it.


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