Newry primary schools urged to sign up to ‘Digital Schools of Distinction’ Awards

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Wednesday, November 25th, 2015
Community, What's On
‘Digital Schools of Distinction’, a flagship awards programme which promotes, recognises and encourages best practice use of technology in primary schools has been launched to primary schools in Northern Ireland. ??????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????The Digital Schools of Distinction Award has been developed to help schools to further integrate technology into the classroom. The initiative aims to recognise best in class practices and build on the progress already made, by providing a pathway and resources for schools who are seeking to do more with technology. The programme also recognises those who achieve excellence and supports the efforts of schools and teachers in making the best use of technology in the learning environment. HP Inc., Hewlett Packard Enterprise and Microsoft are providing support to the programme for five years, to include a financial commitment of £100,000 in the first year as well as the provision of practical support and resources. Primary schools are encouraged to register for the programme through the website where they can undergo a self-evaluation of current practices and standards. The programme aims to sign up 200 primary schools in Northern Ireland to participate in its first full year. Schools who meet the criteria will be awarded Digital School of Distinction status. New digital schools will receive a presentation plaque and a ‘Classroom Kit’ which includes a free HP printer with a free print allowance per month of 200 colour and 2000 mono prints and access to education ICT specialists. The programme has already been successfully rolled out in the Republic of Ireland with over half of primary schools – 1,600 – signed up to become a ‘Digital Schools of Distinction’. 260 schools have been accredited in the first two years of the programme. Minister for Education John O’Dowd emphasized the added value Digital Schools of Distinction status offers to primary schools, “The Department of Education is already committed to supporting schools by investing in their digital future through C2k. “Our aim is to ensure our schools are equipping children with the most up to date ICT knowledge and skills and this programme supports that objective. I am delighted to welcome the support of HP Inc., Hewlett Packard Enterprise and Microsoft in bringing us the Digital Schools of Distinction programme and I would urge schools to participate,” he added. For further information and to register click HERE
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