Mr Grant recently attended the ‘Redefining Learning’ conference in partnership with Microsoft in London, where the academy was officially recognised as a Microsoft Showcase School.
The Microsoft Showcase Schools programme ‘highlights innovative leadership and teaching across globally recognised schools. Showcase School leadership teams are part of a professional community that recognises and amplifies the use of technology to drive school-wide transformation and efficiencies.’
We are working closely with Bright Tribe and our education technology partner The Knowledge Network to implement and embed world class Technology Supported Learning across the academy, following successful pilots during the last academic year.
The academy has been chosen as a showcase school for a number of reasons:
- Bright Tribe’s vision for technology supported learning and sophisticated monitoring and reporting of individual student performance and its implementation planning to make this available in all the Trust schools. Here at The Whitehaven Academy we have embraced this opportunity and we are embedding technology into our everyday teaching and learning.
- The strength of our new leadership team and their enthusiasm for taking this project forward, recognising where we are today and what needs to be accomplished on the improvement journey.
- Our partnership with The Knowledge Network, a Microsoft Gold Partner, gives us the knowledge and experience to drive the use of technology in the academy.
At the Redefining Learning conference, Mr Grant was invited to deliver a talk alongside Matthew Woodruff, Technical Director of The Knowledge Network, about the use of The Knowledge Network’s KiData Platform, incorporating Microsoft’s PowerBI service, in the academy. This innovative solution allows academy leadership and all class teachers to monitor individual student progress and support them with the tailored interventions to ensure no child is left behind.
As part of the Showcase Schools programme, three staff members in the academy have been selected to be Microsoft Innovator Educator Experts (MIEEs) and will deliver talks, training sessions and webinars on behalf of Microsoft to other schools to share best practice and what they have learnt from the implementation of technology supported learning at The Whitehaven Academy.
Being awarded Showcase Schools status is a huge achievement for us and testament to all the work underway to drive forward improvements in teaching and learning, monitoring and reporting, and technology supported learning.
“Microsoft Showcase Schools are inspiring examples of how schools are using mobile-first, cloud-first technology to increase students’ productivity and develop the skills needed in the workplace,” said Anthony Salcito, Vice President, Worldwide Education, Microsoft Corp. “With an innovative use of technology, these schools are transforming learning environments and delivering more personalised education to students, allowing them to do more and achieve more.”
Mr Grant commented: “It is an absolute honour and thrill to be the only academy in Cumbria and one of only six in England to have received this accolade. Working closely with the Showcase School team at Microsoft will enable students, parents and the academy to really influence the change of education and the use of technology in education. Competent and effective use of technology is pivotal to skills for life in the 21st century and this will give our students a real edge in the employment market place.”