Spannerman's Edublog

  • The end of ICT my friends

    It's a while since I put pen to paper. I wrote weekly for seven years about IT in education. It barely seems possible that there was that much to say about the subject but, as is the way of things, eventually there was nothing left to say, and so...

  • Cloud ghost schools

    In February Prof Sugata Mitra picked up a $1m prize in LA from TED. What exactly this bloke called Ted was doing in La La land is not totally clear but although he himself comes from Cloud Cuckoo land he is clearly a generous sort. Thus ended my...

  • Michael Gove and the death of schools computing

    It has taken me awhile to think through this blog and it’s a little complicated so bear with me, I think it is worth the effort. Part 1 It starts with a press release from our leading examination board OCR ( their words, I have no...

  • The Spreadsheet and BYOD anarchy

    I’ve been reading reviews of the fate next year of ICT and Computing in schools. Depressing is not a strong enough word to describe my reaction. Michael Gove, the original swivel eyed loon, abolished New Labour ICT only to find his...

  • BYOD in schools: Knocking loudly on the door

    As we brace ourselves for this season’s round of smartphones it is becoming obvious that the little devils are getting just a bit useful and connectivity pretty acceptable. The ‘life companion’ motif is ringing true. Better...

  • Technical Baccalaureate: It might actually work

    From this September the Department of Education will launch a new qualification called the Technical Baccalaureate or Tech-Bacc for post 16 education. It combines a vocational A-Level-equivalent qualification, such as BTEC IT, Engineering or...

  • Could Maggie have stopped Microsoft?

    Margaret Thatcher’s first year as Prime MInister was marked by the release of Clive Sinclair’s ZX80 personal computer followed shortly by the BBC Micro. Within two years the Department of Education and Science had introduced its...

  • Strike and Skype will take your job

    Teachers are currently not a very happy bunch. In fact they are planning to take quite a lot of industrial action to express just how unhappy they are. Teaching is a profession that in the greater scheme of things enjoys security, pay,...

  • Education, 3D printing and all that

    Is anything moving in the education-IT market? Well yes, sort of. It’s not moving in the way that pressurised magma does not move much before the top blows off the volcano and it will move in the way that magma moves just after the top has...

  • When BYOD went to college

    It’s nearly 18 months since my Chromebook and Galaxy SII came to college to become my wireless ‘work’ computers. The motivation was simple: the college had a good campus-wide wireless and inconvenient XP wired desktops; the...

  • Computer Science in schools (postponed again)

    Two weeks ago we heard that Michael Gove had added computer science to the EBac. The EBac of course was the new certificate of education which was to replace GCSEs. The EBac made English, science, maths, a modern language and (tada!) computing...

  • MIS-management data: Evidence based policy does not work

    Just out of interest I searched for Big Data ‘trending’ in education. Why? Because last year I searched for Cloud and the year before it was Tablets. Fashion, but sure enough at the BETT computer show for education next week I can...

  • Problem Solving: Solutions by RM, Capita and Ubuntu

    Over Christmas I stimulated my brain, specifically my left brain’s inferior frontal gyrus, para-hippocampal gyrus, and parietal lobe as well as my dorsal rostral anterior cingulate, amygdala, the left and right parietal lobe, the thalamus...

  • Virtual Learning... why?

    Two figures produced in 2012 impressed me mightily, as both are all-time records. The first, is that world production of carbon dioxide has hit an all-time high and the other is that HIV reached its highest ever level in the UK. I first...

  • eBook revolution postponed

    I love the dinky screens (especially that square one), the sharp text, the battery life and the storage capacity. I don’t love the union between hardware and ebooks that the major vendors are so keen on, for Kobo, Kindle and Sony...

  • Computing in schools - an exercise in futility

    I’ve done a fair bit of thinking about this business of teaching computing in schools and I think the new proposals have got a simple thing quite wrong. The reinvention of ICT at GCSE to include 27 different qualifications is symptom of an...

  • Why we buy computers we do not need

    NESTA* reported this week that schools are wasting millions of pounds buying computer equipment that they have no real idea what to do with and which end up sitting on shelves. They cited the current craze for tablets. It was ever thus (oops...

  • The Ctrl-V generation

    Last week, bang went the A level resits hard on the heels of modular GCSE’s demise. This week, he gets rid of 25 percent of the Department of Education (mostly HR and IT... shorter acronyms go first it seems) and is of a mind to scrap GCSE...

  • Capita ONE is watching you

    Not so very long ago, the previous Government set out to build a giant children’s database which would contain all sorts of information based around the issuing of a Unique Pupil ID that would follow them for life. This data would be...

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