Monday, 8 July 2013

The UK Computing Curriculum 2014

(Copied word-for-word here to save wading through the original document!)


Purpose of study

A high-quality computing education equips pupils to understand and change the world through logical thinking and creativity, including by making links with mathematics, science, and design and technology. The core of computing is computer science, in which pupils are taught the principles of information and computation, and how digital systems work. Computing equips pupils to use information technology to create programs, systems and a range of media. It also ensures that pupils become digitally literate – able to use, and express themselves and develop their ideas through, information and communication technology – at a level suitable for the future workplace and as active participants in a digital world.

Thursday, 13 June 2013

Redbridge Discount - Brainpop

Thank you Brainpop for offering an attractive discount for Redbridge schools.  The discount period is open until July 15th.  If you work in a Redbridge school and wish to find out more please follow the link.

If you contact the company directly through the link above the nice people at BrainPop have even said that they are happy to give all Redbridge schools a free trial.  It's definitely worth a look.

(Thank you to Oakdale Junior School for putting them in touch with us.)

Friday, 26 April 2013

Do we know what we don't know?

An ICT Coordinator is often responsible not just for the curriculum plan, but also to ensure that it is deliverable in your context. To this end you could annually audit where your staff 'are at' with regard to their own ICT development, and you can then recommend to your senior management team how future professional development planning should reflect the identified needs.
Your underlying philosophy for this aspect of ICT Leadership should be:

Thursday, 21 March 2013

It’s time to ask - is it all worth it?

The Education Endowment Foundation toolkit – recommended to be used in conjunction with Pupil Premium – suggests that digital technologies provide “Moderate impact for high cost, based on extensive evidence.” I have to say without reservation that this is a ludicrously sweeping generalisation for such an influential toolkit.

You can read their assertions in more detail on their site but let me respond emphatically with my view:

Thursday, 28 February 2013

Why code in school (and how to get involved)...

Last night was the first Computing At Schools Hub meeting of 2013 in Redbridge with colleagues from Primary and Secondary schools hosted by Ilford County High School.

A very powerful video entitled “What most schools don't teach” was screened and if you are currently talking to year 9 students about their options (or indeed senior management teams about the 2013-14 timetable allocation) this video could be a very good thing to show.  Please take 5 minutes now to watch it if you can.

Tuesday, 26 February 2013

Is your Tech Support team any good?

This is such a loaded question as the immediate implication is that ‘they’ are not, and more to the point it implies that there is a ‘them’ – which also means there is an ‘us’. As many within the Redbridge school community know I have worked as a member of Tech Support teams in several organisations before I trained as a teacher. I therefore have tremendous respect for the role.  If you are a senior IT manager in a school it is, however, your responsibility to be self-evaluative and ensure that the Tech Support function is effective.

Tech Support – they’re diamonds!

It can be helpful to see our Tech Support colleagues as a diamond that has several different aspects. Each facet shows a different side of their sparkle, and their precious quality arises out of the fact that they often have to handle tremendous heat and pressure! It also provides a helpful mnemonic for reviewing their work:

Wednesday, 13 February 2013

Switched on and Networked for Learning

The ICT Subject Leaders have been meeting and working together in Redbridge longer than I can remember.  The Redbridge Technicians' Forum is a much younger community - starting just 4 years ago.  Yesterday the two communities spent the day together...and they seem to have liked it!

Tuesday, 5 February 2013

LGFL eSafety Survey - initial findings

Over the last couple of months schools across Redbridge have taken part in the LGfL eSafety survey 2013.  To date over 10,000 students have responded.  LGFL launched their interim report (which includes analysis of 8482 pupils responses) today - on Safer Internet Day
Some statements from the report include:
  • Facebook usage increases rapidly in Year 9 but over half of the students who identified Facebook as a favourite site were under 13 (the minimum age for Facebook sign-up).

Thursday, 31 January 2013

Requests for change - 5 steps to budgeting heaven!

Many people in the education world spend this time of year walking for miles around an indoor arena and collecting assorted pens, mouse mats and business cards. This is BETT time of year in London.

If you manage ICT in your school BETT can create pressure on your purse strings. You are highly likely to get many requests for new educational gadgetry from your colleagues, and you may even be tempted to purchase a few things yourself. How can you objectively plan to ensure value for money and not end up spending your precious budget on unnecessary things?

Friday, 25 January 2013

Ofsted's subject-specific guidance for inspectors

Ofsted updated their subject-specific guidance yesterday with specific changes to English, science, history, religious education, modern languages, physical education and music guidance. We last published Ofsted guidance in 2010, but there was an update released at the beginning of 2012.  This article refers to the ICT-specific guidance.

Monday, 21 January 2013

Is my school open today?

If you work in an LGFL school you have access to a service called Opencheck. By registering your school's status on the LGFL website your school can then be seen on the area wide map available on   It looks like this:

What is even better is you can run a feed directly back into your own website updating both the area wide map as well as your website in one go. 

Friday, 11 January 2013

5 questions you should ask your students

Leading a Student Home Access audit

Do you know what your students’ know about technology? Really know? Of course you might know about what you have taught them in ICT lessons – that they are capable of creating a spreadsheet that draws a complex (and colourful) pivot-graph about how your class travels to school or that they can animate plasticine with ease. But what do they do when they are not at school?

A student access survey should ideally be conducted annually and can focus on a stratified sample of students. The results will help you plan your ICT curriculum (especially important in the current environment); plan your whole-school online learning strategy and also ensure your eSafety education focuses on the issues that are relevant for your students.

Thursday, 10 January 2013

Redbridge ICT courses and events for this term

Fronter Administrator

Wed 23/01/2013 09:00-15:00

If you have a technician or ICT leader in your school who does not have administrator rights on the Fronter system then they need to attend this course. This course covers all the basic system administration functions and gives you ongoing access to the Fronter support desk.

Wednesday, 9 January 2013

A new year and a new focus: introducing the ICT-RMC

Our blog template has been refreshed and geared up ready to go for 2013. This year we will be journeying through the Redbridge Management Calendar (ICT-RMC). The Redbridge ICT team has reviewed and analysed all the possible ICT management activities that schools are likely to need to do in any given year. Rather than producing one very long list of management tasks we have sorted all these activities into the calendar months when that activity should be actioned. What's even better news is not one month has more than 3 management tasks! If you work in a UK primary or secondary school and you are involved in ICT leadership just follow along and be inspired to action as each post is published – what could be easier than that?