LESNW is experiencing what you are likely experiencing as well – plenty of contact from companies that have the ‘perfect technology solutions’ for you to deliver remote learning and working to your communities. Some of these are well- proven products and others might be considered ‘opportunist’.
As for all ICT in schools we each have our own context, learning philosophy and capability. As such, purchases are generally considered over an appropriate time-frame that takes account of a wide range of factors – the learning principles, available budget, student safety and risk, screen time, network security, distribution and deployment models, parent education etc.
An obvious concern when we are in ‘COVID-19 mode’ is that there is perceived pressure to deliver quickly with no shortage of companies willing to help. However, there is a risk associated with not taking into account all the usual considerations, processes and conversations that normally lead to wise ICT implementation. Parent education and understanding of their child’s risk can easily be casualties of a quick decision – as may sound pedagogical approaches to learning.
Having said that, this may also be a good time to remind that …
- LESNW has existing trusted partnerships, sometimes as part of a wider LEA agreement, with HP, Apple, Microsoft, Adobe etc. These may be connected to specific resellers and therefore your best purchase point may not be your local support company.
- Our Lutheran Education Microsoft Agreement makes a very broad range of Microsoft products (including TEAMS) available to schools through the school’s existing licence agreement. The Microsoft product range is far greater than just Windows 10 and the Office suite. We still find that a number of support companies will quote for MS licensing without understanding the Lutheran Agreement – if you are not sure please feel free to make contact before committing to a purchase order.
- LESNW is the ‘system’ and as such there is support through each other and also from the secretariat office. Many of you would be aware of the Padlet which we have made available that helps identify what solutions schools are putting in place and may point you to a place of supportive shared conversation. The Education Team is also available at any time to compare thoughts and ideas and assist in decision-making around the delivery of excellent remote learning opportunities. Please feel free to make contact.