Director of Information Systems at Downe House, Mr David McClymont welcomed delegates from over 30 primary and secondary schools across the UK. He opened the seminar by outlining the journey the School has taken to develop and implement its digital strategy from choosing to adopt the Microsoft Platform and the introduction of the Surface device for staff and Remove (Year 7) to implementing new digital technologies across the curriculum with a particular focus on how individual teachers are using the technologies in the classroom.
A trio of Downe House staff shared their experiences of the impact of the digital strategy on their departments. Head of Drama (Curriculum), Miss Anger gave an insight into how the use of Office 365 Audio Feedback has supported marking of drama coursework and Head of Modern Languages, Mrs Basnett explained how her department is working collaboratively online using Teams as a hub to integrate other applications as well as the benefits of virtual meetings. Head of French, Mr Perdikis expounded the benefits of being able to give more immediate and thorough feedback to students via Office 365 and OneNote in particular.
The Keynote Address was given by Mr Steve Beswick, the Microsoft Education Business Development Director who encouraged the audience to drive collaboration and digital skills to the next level within their schools using Microsoft solutions to help teachers make the most of classroom time and to empower better learning outcomes.
The next speaker was Mr Adam Jones from Freedom Technology who spoke about the Microsoft Surface Programme and the final speaker was Mr Alex Pearce, Managing Director of BFC Networks who gave a thought-provoking presentation on ‘Sharepoint as a Storage Solution’.
Mr McClymont said, “We are very proud to have hosted our first seminar as a Microsoft Showcase School and to share our experience of prioritising the introduction of digital technologies into the educational provision at Downe House. Supporting staff to enhance their teaching through the use of new technology is a never-ending adventure in education and I firmly believe that, as a global educational community, collaboration and peer-to-peer learning is the key to successful introduction and integration of digital technology into the teaching and learning environment. I would like to thank all of our fantastic speakers who have given us food for thought on many aspects of driving digital transformation in the educational arena and to all of my fellow staff members who have so enthusiastically embraced the digital transformation at Downe House.”
This will be an annual event in the Downe House calendar and a great opportunity to network and share good practice with schools, whatever stage they are at in the digital transformation journey.
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