Within this supporting paper I intend to examine my school’s approach to the planning, teaching, learning and support of ICT. I will discuss the role of the ICT coordinator within school, the resources used and how they are managed and utilised within it. I will show whether researchers support the school’s approach to how ICT is developed including e-learning. ICT is an acronym that stands for Information Communications Technology. It is widely used in educational settings and it covers a range of equipment that can store, retrieve, transmit or receive information electronically in digital form for example, computers, digital TV, mobile phones etc. ICT is growing rapidly and is having a significant impact on modern day living, “ICT is increasingly an invisible yet also a ubiquitous technology, and it really is having a profound effect upon our lives.” (Siraj-Blatchford, Whitebread, 2008, pg. 3)
Children are surrounded by ICT at a young age, before they even start school. In the home, technology includes mobile phones, toys that have buttons or buzzers, ovens, washing machines, laptops, remote controls for TV’s and DVD’s and other machines that require programming. Children are growing up with technology around them and will use this to increase their understanding in all areas of learning, “Pupils should be given opportunities to apply and develop their ICT capability through the use of ICT tools to support their learning in all subjects.” (DFE, 2013)
Within the school in which I work, the main role of the ICT co-ordinator is to produce an ICT policy that needs to be updated regularly, co-ordinate the use of ICT across the curriculum and to ensure that the school’s ICT resources are well maintained and are being used effectively in each year group, “The majority of Primary Schools have appointed an ICT co-ordinator. This is an important and valued role providing support, advice and cohesion.” (Elston, 2007, pg.20)
ICT training within school for staff is on a needs basis as staff will identify themselves if they need to train through performance management meetings and discussions with the ICT co-ordinator. The ICT co-ordinator also works closely with Crystal, who are an outside agency that are employed by the school. They come into school once a week to support the ICT co-ordinator by updating software, mending equipment that has been broken and will carry out any other ICT jobs that require their help. They also support the whole school including office staff who may require help with SIMS and will upload pupil information onto software programmes such as Education City and Mathletics. The school has three budgets for ICT, the main budget being for ink as this can be very expensive. The second budget is for a rolling programme. The money given here is to replace broken equipment and for equipment that might need updating. The third budget is given to the ICT co-ordinator. She carries out an audit every year of products in school and asks class teachers to give feedback on them about what the children in their class use or don’t use and how effective they are as a learning resource. With this money she will buy up-to-date resources, software and pay for subscriptions to sites such as Education City and Mathletics. Some site licenses such as the 2Simple software is bought for the school and is paid for with the whole school budget. As stated by the DFE [online] 2012, ‘ICT at key stages 1 and 2 have been disapplied with effect from 1 September 2012 and are no longer statutory’. The school follows the QCA schemes of work for ICT and uses elements from the BWD schemes of work. The ICT co-ordinator then adapts these to cover all the necessary skills through the topics being taught in school and that best meets the needs of our pupils. An example of an adapted scheme of work for Year 2 is in Appendix 1. Assessments for all units in ICT are carried out every half term in each year group in order to...
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