At a recent roundtable event in London a number leading education thinkers pondered the now decades old question – how can we provide one to one digital device access for all pupils in our schools? They concluded that without training, support and leadership the holy grail of one-to-one will still elude many pupils and thus perpetuate the digital divide.
Compared with the business world, education has been slow to adopt technology. However, while there is no silver bullet for embedding technology for the purpose of learning and teaching in schools, there is plenty of ammunition from which to construct a series of arguments and practices to change school culture for that purpose. And, despite persistent media sniping about the effectiveness of investment in technology for schools, the landscape is already changing. Schools are adopting technology, and learning and teaching is changing. The problem is that it is very patchy, with many schools moving ahead while others are struggling or even falling behind.
This was the picture that emerged at a special education discussion about 1:1 computing held in London and organised by classoos UK, an innovative, UK-based company that has created a new and compelling digital platform for textbooks for schools. The debate, involving experienced educators working with technology for learning and teaching, was considering “1:1 computing – what needs to happen before schools use the powerful devices that almost all children already have access to?”