At Inspiring Futures through Learning (IFtL) multi-academy trust, we have committed to a shared vision centred on children and their futures.
We want children to be ready for a future that we can only imagine. In the past 15 years, we’ve seen a technological evolution that can only be truly understood by highlighting that when the first iPhone released 15 years ago, dial-up internet was still in use. Facebook hit the mainstream back in 2007, and Amazon launched the first Kindle. The advancements in technology over the past 15 years have been staggering, and these serve to highlight just how far technology could develop in the next 15 years too. We owe it to the children we teach to educate and inspire them to make use of digital technology in the right ways.
We want to use technology as one way of increasing equity in learning and accessibility of the curriculum. We aim to unlock opportunities for our learners to find out more about our world, learn together when geographically apart, and develop skills for a world that will continue to advance in ways not yet dreamed of in their lifetimes. We are committed to investing in immersive learning technologies for children that are accessible, strengthen engagement and learning for each child, and provide a wealth of digital skills.
So, as part of this commitment, we are incredibly excited to share the news that we are now rolling out a 1:1 iPad programme. In short, this is a programme in which all children from Years 2 and above will be provided with an iPad that will serve to enhance their engagement, skillset, and outcomes during their time with us. This is a significant financial investment from Inspiring Futures through Learning, and the devices will be issued free of charge, with a case and charger, for the students use both at school and at home. We will also provide access to iPads in EYFS and Year 1 to support their learning. The iPads for EYFS and Year 1 will not go home.
There are several reasons why we have taken this step. We know that the world we are preparing your child for is changing quickly. It is more than possible that their first role in the workplace will be one which did not exist when they were born. Every job they ever have will rely on their skilful use of technology. The pace of change is unprecedented and the digital competencies that we can confer through the routine use of technology in every aspect of their learning will be important preparation for this.
It is also important for us to emphasise that the pupils’ iPads will be a supplement to what we already do, not a replacement. Just like the pencils and pens we also expect them to use, the iPad is just another tool in their bag, albeit a remarkably powerful one. Sometimes it will be the best tool for a task, sometimes it won’t. In other schools which have adopted a similar approach, analysis shows that tablets are used in most lessons, not all, and for short periods at a time, not exclusively.
This isn’t a project we have embarked on casually. We have collaborated with several different trusts, during which we have learned from their expertise and experiences to ensure we approach this project suitably prepared for success. We are certain that iPads will make a marked difference to the quality and pace of learning here at school.
In summary, we are convinced that this project will make a significant contribution to your child’s education, which is otherwise impossible to replicate.
We look forward to working with you to make ‘Futures’ a success.