UPCOMING WEBINAR | JUNE 14 AT 3 PM
Running your Schools IT without a local Server
At Tara Learning, we believe that schools can run their entire IT infrastructure without a local school server. If you would like to hear more about this solution for your school, please join us at our webinar on June 14th at 3 PM.
At the webinar you will hear how other schools have successfully moved to the cloud and how this has greatly reduced their IT costs, security risks and provided greater flexibility and convenience for digital learning. We will refer to Microsoft and Google Cloud solutions.
Want to know more? Register for our webinar and learn how you can move away from the local school server.
Migrating to The Cloud – basics and benefits:
Cloud computing has been with us for a while now and the Education sector have been slowly migrating towards cloud storage. The pandemic has hastened some of these migrations leaving a lot of duplication with data on servers and in the cloud. With no proper planning an orderly migration of data was not possible.
Tara Learning can help and direct this transition from start to finish.
Step by Step moving to the cloud with Tara Learning
Audit of your school premises, technology and equipment available in premises and infrastructure integrated in the premises.
Create a plan fully outlining every step of the process the upgrade of the relevant school data to the cloud. Year or Five year depending on resources available.
We can assist in the tender process – helping to prepare tenders
Ensuring the correct regulation equipment is ordered and working with vendors to ensure all work is installed correctly and completed to standard and on time.
What is cloud migration?
Cloud migration is the process of moving digital data into the cloud. It involves moving from on-premises date centres or legacy infrastructure to the cloud.
Why move to the Cloud?
No more expensive server equipment, no maintenance and costly electricity bills. You also cut down on operational costs no tech time on backups and hardware maintenance. Cloud vendors offer pay-as-you-go pricing, which results in paying only for the services you require.
Cloud providers upgrade regularly following the latest educational standards, requirements and consumer demand. The risk of cyber-attacks are reduced.
Most uploads go smoothly. Issues that may occur the can be resolved promptly. Cloud migration reduces downtime resulting in a lower risk of data loss in the future.
Services level agreements are available from most cloud vendors.
The cloud has limitless opportunities for educators, flexibility, exciting and innovative updates being developed in an ongoing basis.
Students can access classes and information from anywhere in the world at any time. This makes it achievable for students and teachers to collaborate regardless of their circumstances.
Benefits of Cloud Computing:
- Delivered through the cloud with no need for on-prem hardware
- Highly automated and work-flow based
- End-user training if required to ensure smooth transition
Digital Strategy for Schools in 2027
Our team at Tara Learning have created a synopsis of the Irish Education Department recently released 'Digital Strategy for Schools in 2027' The Strategy has been broken in three Pillars: Pillar 1 - Supporting the embedding of digital technologies in Teaching, learning and Assessment, Pillar 2 - Digital Technology Infrastructure and Pillar 3 - Looking to the future: policy, research and digital leadership.
Pillar 1 - Supporting the embedding of digital technologies in Teaching, Learning and Assessment
Pillar 2 - Digital Technology Infrastructure Teaching, Learning and Assessment
Pillar 3 - Looking to the future: policy, research and digital leadership Teaching, Learning and Assessment
- Technological knowledge (TK): Knowledge and ability to effectively use a variety of technologies to support teaching, learning and assessment
- Pedagogical knowledge (PK): Knowledge of effectively applying a range of strategies and teaching approaches in practice
- Content knowledge (CK): Knowledge and understanding of the curriculum
“…will be used to inform teacher professional learning and the necessary supports and resources will continue to be developed to support all teachers to ensure the use of digital technologies becomes embedded in their practice.” (p. 27)
Teacher professional learning programmes need to focus on student-centred, creative pedagogies, employ interdisciplinary approaches and project tasks to engage learners in real world problem solving and how to create meaningful student-teacher connections using digital technologies (p. 31)
This will include enhancing the skills development of teachers and school leaders to ensure a digitally competent and confident education system, which will in turn foster the development of digital skills, knowledge and understanding in our student population as provided for in the curriculum.
The new Strategy will place a stronger focus on the effective use of digital technologies in all teaching, learning and assessment activities and supporting schools to further embed effective digital capacity planning and development. (p. 32)
The EU SELFIE32 (Self-reflection on Effective Learning by Fostering the Use of Innovation Educational Technologies) tool, is a free online tool designed to help schools plan for the embedding of digital technologies into teaching, learning and assessment and has a strong basis in research. (p. 36)
SELFIEforTeachers tool is another online tool developed by the EU, which helps teachers reflect on how they are using digital technologies in their professional practice and can be used by the Digital Learning team and individual teachers to identify professional learning needs in relation to digital technologies. (p. 36)
The use of digital technologies and online platforms to support ongoing and formative assessment, in particular, where technology can allow for more specific and immediate feedback.
The use of digital portfolios in teaching and learning has also grown, providing a platform for student-centred learning.
This Digital Strategy for Schools will seek to achieve a high performing digital education ecosystem in Irish schools, informed by the consultation process and the ongoing development of technology in education including new and emerging technologies. (p. 42)
- Educational software such as digital learning platforms and apps including those to develop computational thinking, coding, literacy and so on.
- Technologies to support inclusion and differentiated learning including access to the curriculum.
- Services supporting a variety of activities including school administration. (p. 42)
This Pillar incorporates connectivity (both broadband services to schools and network infrastructure within schools), technical support and the provision of advice on digital infrastructural issues. (p. 42)
The provision of high quality technical support is not consistent and remains a significant issue for schools being both costly and time consuming (p. 47)
- The establishment of regional panels of approved providers who can provide the necessary technical support and advice to schools.
- The potential for smaller schools to establish clusters to access technical support providers in a more cost effective and efficient manner. (p. 47)
European Commission’s Framework for the Digital Competence of Educators (DigCompEdu)35 describes what it means for educators to be digitally competent and influenced the development of the DLF (p. 37/38)
It is apparent from the consultation process that in the main, schools wish to maintain autonomy as to the equipment and software they select. Relationships with and support for local providers are viewed by schools as very important and they would seek to maintain those rather than be obliged to use central mechanisms only.
School leaders do not necessarily always have the relevant and/or required expertise to determine what best fits their requirements and should be supported in making the right decisions for their school, teachers and learners. (p. 48)
- Provide assistance and guidance to schools to understand how relevant strategies related to the use of digital technologies in teaching, learning and assessment can be implemented. (p. 52)
- blending school site and other physical environments away from the school site (either with
the presence of a teacher, or separated by space and/or time in distance learning);
- blending different learning tools that can be digital (including online learning) and non-Digital. (p. 53)
Concerns were expressed during the consultation, in particular by school leaders and teachers, as to the increased obligations under data protection and GDPR that arise when using digital technologies in the school environment. This relates both to internal and external usage as well as in relation to the rules around the use of copyright and copyright infringement. (p. 66)
Digital Competence/Digital Skills
EU DEAP = base document
EU DEAP places the development of digital skills and competences as one of its two strategic priorities (p. 37)