Not every educational change requires technology, but technology is an increasingly important part of life and work, and this is increasingly reflected in classroom practice. 

There is a danger here however, as starting with the technology is rarely best.  There are many examples of schools buying computers that are left in a cupboard, pupils being taught to use Powerpoint with little regard for the quality of the content, or electronic whiteboards being used just like ordinary blackboards.

 The best approach is not to plan a technology procurement, but to plan a change management process.  The diagram below shows the impact of purchasing technology compared to investing in staff development.



 Staff Development    é




Regular self-review and staff development linked to outcomes for all staff

Includes teaching about technology and developing some of the skills needed in the 21st century.

All staff making good use of the available technology, not just to raise traditional measures of attainment, but to develop the skills needed for the 21st Century.  Outcomes are hindered by the lack of available technology.

21st century school that is preparing their students to make the most of life’s opportunities.

Some staff involved in development and self-review

The pupil experience will include references to technology and how it can be used, preparing them to some extent for life and work.

Some staff make good use of technology.  This often has a focus on raising attainment rather than the full range of skills needed in the 21st Century. 

As only some staff have caught the vision of technology, the extensive availability of equipment can create a counter-culture, with teachers telling students to switch off the technology and concentrate on traditional approaches to learning.

Training only.  No capacity building and outcome-led development


Traditional approach that does not use technology.

Even when it is available, the technology is often ignored – left to gather dust in the cupboard.

Technology used as a substitute for learning.


Little or no technology available

Computers and internet connection available to timetabled classes or as a single terminal in some classes

Extensive range of technology available including computers, tablets and other devices, in sufficient numbers to allow regular use


Availability of technology  =>