EdTech gets £10m government boost

Schoop last week welcomed the publishing of the government’s long-awaited £10 million EdTech strategy and was happy to note that there is a great deal of positivity towards this vibrant technology sector. The Department of Education delivered the strategy with the aim of ‘reducing teacher workload, boosting student outcomes and helping level the playing field for those with special needs and disabilities,’ setting out Ten Challenges to be met in order to attain these goals.

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Despite various calls to support the sector over the years, schools have been pretty much working independently, forming individual solutions with the products proposed by the market, under no direct guidance from the Dept of Education. This new strategy aims to bring the EdTech sector under one umbrella, with initiatives such as ‘demonstrator schools and colleges’ where technology can be tried and tested, as well as making recommendations and providing ‘peer-to-peer’ support and training for teachers, lecturers and school leaders’.

The Education Secretary Damian Hinds asserted that “We are living in a digital world with technology transforming the way we live our lives – both at home and in the workplace. But we must never think about technology for its own sake. Technology is an enabler and an enhancer. For too long in education, technology has been seen as something that adds to a teacher’s workload rather than helps to ease.”

We are pleased to see this focus on EdTech, and particularly the understanding that technology in the school and classroom can help ease teachers’ burdens, both administrative and in terms of connecting with parents to improve at-home learning. Indeed one of the government’s Ten EdTech Challenges is to, “improve parental engagement and communication, whilst cutting related teacher workload by up to five hours per term.”

Schoop is well set to deliver on this challenge, having already proven it can ease administrative burdens on schools and teachers, whilst ensuring that parental engagement is created or enhancing programmes already in place. We are looking forward to the future where technology is seamlessly integrated into the classroom, connecting schools and parents in order to enhance educational outcomes for all children, not just the lucky few.