|Is e-learning present in national programmes and action plans?||No||In England the Department for Education (DfE) is responsible for ICT in schools policy. The Government is committed to devolving greater autonomy to schools and moving away from central programmes and interventions. The Government believes that the effective use of technology in education is important, but schools are best placed to make decisions about how to use the resources available to them - including ICT. Schools are responsible for choosing and purchasing technology to meet their needs and this is funded out of their normal budgets.|
|Is e-learning present in national curricula?||Yes||ICT is present in the national curriculum as a defined subject across all stages to age 16. In many schools it is also delivered across the curriculum, embedded across other subject areas. The DfE is currently undertaking a review of the National Curriculum and in January 2012, the DfE Secretary of State announced proposals to disapply the current ICT programme of study, attainment targets and statutory assessment arrangements from September 2012 until the new national curriculum comes into force (which is likely to be Sept 2014). This proposal was in response to growing concerns about the current content being out of date. The disapplication is an interim proposal and is designed to give schools more flexibility to update their programmes of study to meet the needs of pupils and employers more effectively. Under the new proposal, schools are still required to teach ICT as part of a broad and balanced curriculum and they will continue to be held accountable in this regard through Ofsted inspection frameworks and a requirement to publish details of their curriculum online. Teachers will however have the freedom to determine the curriculum which is best for their pupils. In July 2012, the Secretary of State for Education announced that ICT would remain part of the National Curriculum with new shorter Programmes of Study for ICT to age 16 from September 2014. It is intended that this will allow schools sufficient flexibility to build on innovative practice and teaching developed during the period of disapplication.|
|Are there training initiatives (for teachers, enterprises) using eLearning tools on the national level?||Yes||Although no specific ICT competence targets are currently set for UK teachers, it is recognised that ICT skills are an essential part of the 21st century teacher’s toolkit, and are necessary if a teacher is to carry out the full range of professional duties required. In 2010, the ‘Vital’ programme (www.vital.ac.uk) was set up to provide an ICT professional development opportunity for all state registered schools (including special schools) and sixth-form colleges across England. “VITAL” aims to help schools to use ICT to add value to lessons and find new ways to engage learners. It seeks to share professional development opportunities and develop resources for teachers in the effective use of ICT. Funded by the DfE (up till March 2013) and delivered by the Open University, Vital offers: • flexible, cost-effective courses • case studies of how other teachers are using ICT in their own lessons • collaborative spaces to share ideas, experiences and materials • guides to key technologies and ideas on how to use them in the classroom to inspire learners • interviews with leading practitioners • advice and support from ICT specialists • information about opportunities using Vital learning activities as a basis for gaining academic awards and credit. Naace (The ICT Association, www.naace.org) provides a range of ICT CPD online courses for teachers. Participating in a course allows registered users to gain the first stage of the Naace ICT CPD Award Scheme, enabling teachers to accredit their learning through the professional association. (http://www.ictcpd4free.co.uk/).|
|Are there dissemination initiatives for awareness raising in place?||Yes||Most subject associations and organisations such as Naace and the Association for Information Technology in Teacher Education (www.itte.org.uk) host annual conferences and regular one-off continuing professional development (CPD) events. There are also a growing number of ‘Teachmeet’ sessions, which are organised but informal meetings where teachers and enthusiasts share and exchange good practice, innovation and personal insights into teaching with technology.|
|Are there national projects on creative classrooms and creative learning environments in place?||No||There are no known national projects on creative classrooms and learning environments/spaces however the UK is taking part in the four year ITEC project. The iTEC (Innovative Technologies for an Engaging Classroom) started in September 2010 and is looking at the potential classroom of the future. The project will lead to an increased understanding of the ways in which new and emerging technologies can support more effective forms of learner engagement and explore a vision of the future where schools will remain the key location for learning and assessment as part of a wider network of physical and virtual learning locations. Details of the iTEC project can be found at: http://itec.eun.org/web/guest;jsessionid=72E15DCF019FE448DB03C678F26A4F73|
External contributions are more than welcome. If you would like to share with us a country, regional or local-level initiative relevant for this DAE action, you can do it via the online form.