Minister of state for universities, science, research and innovation Chris Skidmore announced at BETT 2020 the appointment of edtech charity LGfL, the Education Foundation and the Sheffield Institute of Education at Sheffield Hallam University as official delivery partners of the DfE’s EdTech Demonstrator Programme
The programme is a part of the roll out of the EdTech Strategy in England which was launched in April 2019 that aims to transform technology in education and solve key challenges within the education sector.
As delivery partners this new coalition will work together using their strengths as a team to support leading schools and colleges in showcasing and sharing how education technology can be used for maximum benefit, creating a national network of best edtech teaching and learning practice.
The EdTech Strategy shone a light on many of the barriers to the effective implementation and use of education technology within their institutions, including concerns about costs exceeding tight budgets, a lack of understanding of the benefits technology can bring, as well as limited training and confidence in using EdTech.
The overall plan as announced in the EdTech Strategy April last year (realising the potential of technology in education) – supported by £10 million of funding – will advance digital innovation by enabling teachers, lecturers and other education thought leaders to work with experienced schools who will share their excellent practice across the nation, formulating innovative strategies to solve crucial challenges within the education sector, including:
- Reducing teachers’ workload in relation to marking;
- Boosting training opportunities for teachers;
- Discovering how anti-cheating software can be developed;
- Identifying how technology can be used to promote inclusivity for young people with special educational needs and disabilities.
LGfL is a charity committed to the advancement of education through digital innovation. This appointment as a delivery partner in the DfE’s EdTech Strategy aligns perfectly with its mission to energise teaching and learning, improve educational outcomes for its 3,000 member schools, keep their 1.2 million children safe online, tackle inequality, promote wellbeing and help its community harness the power and promise of edtech.
The Education Foundation is a leading education advisory group which aims to accelerate and support positive change in the British education system, co-founded by Ty Goddard, executive chair of Edtech UK – a strategic body launched to accelerate edtech adoption and understanding.
The Sheffield Institute of Education (SIoE) is a national centre of education, recognised for its excellence and innovation in teaching and learning from early years to higher education as well as its contribution to research, evaluation and knowledge exchange. It has received an ‘Outstanding’ rating from Ofsted for its early years’ teacher training and an excellent Ofsted inspection of its Teach First provision.
Commenting on the appointment, John Jackson, CEO of LGfL, said: “We are honoured to have been awarded this opportunity to work with the Government, schools and colleges to harness education technology to support academic outcomes and wellbeing for both staff and students.”
Ty Goddard, founder of the Education Foundation, stated: “The introduction of the EdTech Strategy across England is vital in order to support schools in implementing Edtech and also for schools to learn from each other, which is why as a consortium we’re thrilled to be delivery partners in this inspiring new programme.”
Sean Cavan, head of business engagement at SIoE and Institute Lead for the programme, commented: “We are delighted to be working in partnership with these prestigious organisations and fantastic schools for the benefit of the education sector.”