Development & training

The most common recommendation from our schools was to start the training before the mobile devices even arrived. 90% offered teachers professional development before the mobile devices were introduced.


95% of schools offered teachers professional development while adopting technology  89% of schools offered teachers professional development since adopting technology

A number of schools involved students in ongoing staff training:

We have student leaders and I hope they will become the real champions…We have a young member of staff working on this and he has been great in identifying staff training needs and breeding enthusiasm and confidence”

It was found that  lack of training was a factor in non-adoption:

While several trials have run in schools in the UK in the past five or six years with one-to-one devices (such as notebooks and laptops), infrastructure, cost and maintenance, and lack of teacher training appear to have been restrictive factors in their widespread adoption”
From the Stage 2 Research Report

Appoint a Director of Technology

Image: Adam Webster, Caterham School (Dominic Norrish Presentation)

Image: Adam Webster, Caterham School (Dominic Norrish Presentation)

According to Dominic Norrish, the role of Director of Technology plays a key leadership role in training, and mediating relationships between different parties (including parents), and is therefore the “lynchpin” holding everything together.

In addition to an emphasis on staff development rather than training, the role requires a focus on learning and education (technology as a utility, not a goal), and line-managing technical staff. Specific skills include:

  • Experience in applying technology to enhance teaching and learning.
  • A broad, functional understanding of technologies used by schools.
  • The ability to manage suppliers, projects and contracts.
  • Being a trainer with educational credibility, able to demystify technology.
  • Ability to keep up with developments and spot both opportunities to innovate and, practical solutions. (*)

Sessions With Parents

Schools must support parents in helping kids use the devices at home. Also, it’s important to counter any misinformation parents may be reading about cost and impact. Convey the following through parent consultation evenings, or via newsletters or emails:

  • The School Philosophy on Pedagogy: Explain how it can be realised by tablets.
  • The Proven Benefits of Tablets.
  • Demonstrate How the Tablet Works: Some schools found that device champions could do this.
  • Safety and Security: Provide information about firewalls and other technical information in an easy-to-understand manner.
  • Financing: Will there be parental contributions, or will the tablet be free? Explain why contributions will be needed (no matter how small).
  • The Agreements in our Toolkit: Explain how these work and why they are necessary (ie, safe use of the device).

* In collaboration with Dominic Norrish, Director of Technology at United Learning, and member of

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