The Merchant Taylors’ Education Committee’s Seminar 2015: The Future of IT in Schools

This year’s Seminar had a record number of 80 delegates attending from across the education sector including primary, secondary and tertiary education from the state and independent sector, as well as think tanks, charitable trusts and other Livery Companies.

The delegates were given two thought provoking presentations on ‘The Future of IT in Schools’. The first speaker was Mr Toby Black, Managing Director of RM Education. Mr Black presented five key themes that encompassed the use of technology in schools: Safeguarding, ICT Vision, Localisation vs Centralisation, Use of Data and Parental Engagement.  After being presented with polarised options on each theme the audience was asked to vote on which side they felt a stronger alignment with; for example on theme of safeguarding whether schools should have rigorous filtering or open access to the internet. This showed the variety of views within schools and the educational community, highlighting the importance of debate on such subjects.

The second speaker, Rose Luckin Rose is a Professor of Learner-Centred Design at the London Knowledge Lab, a department within the Institute for Education, where she is also the Chair of Learning with Digital Technologies. Professor Luckin’s research explores how to most effectively connect learning across multiple technologies, locations, subjects and times. This work is interdisciplinary and encompasses education, psychology, artificial intelligence and Human-Computer Interaction. Through her presentation, Professor Luckin discussed some of the recent research that she had undertaken and showed how the relationship between people, the concepts they are trying to learn and teach and the contexts within which they operate will all impact on the best use of technology in schools.

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[Photograph left to right: Mr Toby Black, The Master, Prof. Rose Luckin and Mr Martin Clarke]