Naace Newsletter - June 2021
 ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌
June 2021

Welcome to the June edition of the Newsletter. I am sorry that this publication is a little late This is entirely due to workload on my part I am afraid, and I apologise for that.

One of the “highlights” of the past week was Gavin Williams’ proposal to ban mobile phones from schools. This has always been a contentious topic and we can all appreciate both the benefits and distractions that the use of mobile phones in schools might present. We have however, taken such massive strides in exploring the use of online engagement with pupils over the past months. Do we think it is helpful to exclude them from the digital landscape for schools at this time, and how might their exclusion impact on the need to capitalise on the gains we have made over the past eighteen months?

When I was teaching I earned an "Outstanding" grade for a lesson during an inspection where I specifically asked pupils to use their mobile phones to role play towards achieving a collaborative task. During that lesson we covered etiquette, use of text language, benefits and disadvantages of text messaging over email, ambiguity of language - in addition to the curricular aims for the lesson. I am sure that I was/am not alone in taking onboard responsibility for demonstrating to pupils appropriate use of perhaps the single most powerful, in both positive and negative senses, technological tool and stimulus for societal change that has ever existed?
We hope that Mr William’s consultation benefits from the experiences of others who have “grasped the nettle”.

Naace would be very pleased to hear your thoughts on this and the following post in the Naace LinkedIn group asks for your contributions. We particularly would like to receive examples from practitioners who have experience building the use of mobile phones into their teaching. You can access the group here.

Laurence Boulter

SRF School of the Month – The Loynes Specialist School, Lancaster

The Loyne Specialist School has been leading specialist provision in Education for many years. Through the use of technology, we strive to enable all of our pupils from the age of 3 to 19 to communicate effectively, make choices and enrich their daily life, both at school, in the community and at home. Each new pupil is assessed for their individual needs and the most suitable ICT equipment is allocated to them. The focus on lifelong learning and independence is embedded throughout the curriculum and we were excited to showcase our school for the NaaceMark assessment. The whole school was eager to give examples of the equipment used by our pupils.

Technology is an intrinsic part of our daily school life. Some of our pupils use the eye gaze system. This is used to communicate choices, opinions, and their personal needs. The eye gaze can also be used to focus on key skills such as eye contact and tracking, as well as allowing pupils to read independently.

Big mac switches are used to communicate and enable our non-verbal pupils to say hello and good morning to their peers, to make choices or requests, or to answer simple yes/no questions. Classes also utilise interactive whiteboards to enhance curriculum topics and to support access to learning and social games.

During cooking lessons pupils can operate equipment such as food mixers and blenders by using a power-link and switch; this can also be used in other lessons with equipment such as fans and hoovers to enable and develop an understanding of cause and effect. Switches can also be linked with a joy lead to a computer and pupils can access a graded approach to switching software which offers opportunities to develop scanning, cause and effect and targeting.

Throughout the recent lockdown due to the pandemic, our pupils were able to access daily lessons via Zoom and through work set by teachers using a home school app. We also operated a loans system, so that families could loan specialist equipment, including technology, for use at home during the lockdown.

Since school was able to reopen, Zoom has also been used for weekly school and departmental assemblies where pupils have celebrated their achievements together and promoted wellbeing throughout school. The introduction of Class Dojo the home/school app created a seamless platform for communication between school and home, giving parents and school staff a safe way to share information and photographs.

So staff are able to capture and assess our pupils’ unique steps of progress, which are not always measured by other assessment tools, ‘Evidence for Learning’ is used throughout school; staff can instantly capture and record any photos or videos as evidence towards pupils’ individual targets which are then tracked and assessed regularly.

We have a multi-purpose sensory room which is used to bring stories or subjects to life. It can provide an engaging sensory experience through lights, temperature, sound effects, vibrating resonance boards and projected images. All staff are trained to use the room and all the equipment in there.

Due to the pandemic our Christmas 2020 performance was not able to go ahead in the usual way. This didn’t stop us, our students in F.E produced a virtual Christmas.
performance which involved each class recording a scene then sending the videos to the F.E department to be edited. Parents and carers were then sent the link via zoom to watch. The pupils did an incredible job and the Christmas production was a resounding success.

As FE pupils have not been able to sell products at the local farmers market they have created their own website to sell their unique business enterprise produce, this includes a click and collect service complete with invoices and feedback requests.
As a school we are extremely proud that we have been able to respond to the challenges of the pandemic in an innovative way that has created exciting learning opportunities for our pupils to excel.

Ciara Davies – ICT Lead, The Loynes Specialist School

NaaceMark Assessors Update

This week saw the Naacemark Assessors meeting together for the bi-annual updates. Again, this was a first – that all the meetings were virtual via Microsoft Teams. Over twenty colleagues attended and have had their Assessor status extended until the end of August 2023. So, thank you all for your support for Naace and NaaceMark. If you are an Assessor and weren’t able to attend – don’t worry we have a third and final session booked for September. If we haven’t already contacted you, please contact to check on your status and availability for the final event in the series.

Amongst other things we covered the following topics in our events:

  • Changes to the content of the SRF recently introduced.
  • Feedback from the first set of Virtual Assessment Visits (VAVs) introduced to allow schools to be assessed during the difficult times of the Covid situation
  • Establishment of an Assessor Community

The overwhelming sense was that VAVs have been a good idea (allowing for the occasional technical hitch) but bring forth slightly different pressures on both schools and assessors – so having heard from the Assessors, we’d really like to hear from schools who have hosted a Virtual Assessment Visit – what are your thoughts please? If you’d like to send them to Phil Blackburn (email address above) that would be great. If you could indicate if you’d be happy to write a short piece for this newsletter as part of your communication that would be wonderful – thank you in advance.

We’ll be starting the Assessor Community in the next couple of weeks so please look out for the emails if you attended one of the updates.

Phil Blackburn, Andy Murden, Gavin Hawkins
Members of the Board and Assessors

[ICTRN] Women in Technology - June 24th 5-6pm - free event

If you are engaged in research you may want to sign-up for the Women in Tech Campfire event with three ground-breaking and influential women and learn first-hand about their technology journeys.

Our panel will highlight the industry’s opportunities, challenges and potential rewards from an insider's view of this rapidly changing business environment, including education and training routes to building a successful tech business.

Joining us on the night will be:

  • Sarah McNabb: UK Market Advisor at Enterprise Ireland
  • Shilpa Shah: Programme Director for Deloitte Delivery & Women in Technology Leader
  • Charlene Hunter: CEO & Founder of Coding Black Females
  • Shilpa Shah: Programme Director for Deloitte Delivery & Women in Technology Leader
  • Charlene Hunter: CEO & Founder of Coding Black Females

This event is online and organised by Campfire - the cultural division of media agency

Tickets are free and a place at the event can be reserved here

Nadya French Podcast

Our most recently recruited member of the Board of management, Nadya French features in a podcast on the Coding Black Females website alongside Tessy Mosindi. I think many will enjoy the informality of this chat between an established practitioner and someone fairly new to teaching. This dialogue provides insight to some of the practical day-to-day issues that face those in the classroom, but also reminds us that teachers are fully aware of the wider issues that impact on the curriculum.

Worth a listen.
Third Millennium Learning Award- Pause for Review

Following our recent review of the SRF we are now about to conduct a review of 3MLA. The review will necessitate the suspension of training of 3MLA Guides, who assess the submissions from schools, until the review is completed. 3LMA does not require schools to notify Naace of their intent to submit an application so we need to ensure that we have Guides available from those schools that have been working on submissions.

If you are at a school that is working on a 3MLA submission, can you please let us know of your intention to submit an application for assessment so that we can ensure that Guides are available to assess your submission. There is a danger that schools that do not inform us are unlikely to have their submission assessed until after the review is completed, and we would like to avoid that circumstance.

If you are planning to begin an 3MLA submission can you please also let us know so that we can keep you informed as the review progresses.

We will be grateful if you would complete the following form to let us know your intensions if you have been considered submitting an application using this form.

London Tech Week

Naace are excited to be taking part in London Tech Week in September. Our chair, Laurence Boulter, will be participating in a lively panel discussion around Blended Learning. Details can be found below:

Virtual event date: Wednesday 22nd September
Panel Discussion: Blended learning / Digital + Hybrid Classrooms (School Audience)
Session times: The panel will be pre-recorded ahead of the event, followed by a live virtual Q&A taking place on Wednesday 22nd September.
The Northern Celebration of Education 2021

Join Schools North East and partners for the third Northern Celebration of Education from the comfort of your own desk or home!

Due to Covid-19, CelebrateEd - the Northern Celebration of Education 2021 has been transformed into a two day online event with a wide range of on-demand sessions to accompany the live sessions.

Celebrate and showcase the best in classroom practice across the North of England in a practitioner – led virtual space where you will be enthused and energised.

Think celebratory atmosphere, thinking space, debate, research-informed new practice, and connecting with peers from schools across the North.

Find out more here.

Naace is grateful to the organisations in the edtech industry for their continued support.

Thank you to:
CREATE Education
Elementary Technology
KAZ Type

Details of all our Sponsors can be found on the website here.
Naace - The Education Technology Association

The Naace Board of Management welcomes contact from Members, Sponsors and anyone else who is interested in the work of Naace.

Follow for updates

Email Marketing by ActiveCampaign