Planning how to use technology in a school is a bit like planning to build a house. If you don’t have a clear strategy in place then the final build might not fulfil what you need, and in a worst case scenario not even be remotely usable.
With technology being used in so many parts of the school, it is important to have a strategy so that everything works together properly, enhancing your teaching and learning approach.
A digital strategy should contain a plan of what you want to achieve and why, cover a period of years, and tally with financial and budget opportunities and pressures. To ensure longevity, it is essential that the right investment in defining and communicating your digital strategy is made from the outset.
A good digital strategy in education will include the following:
A digital vision
All journeys start with a destination in mind. Your digital vision is about imagining what the desired destination looks like. An effective vision also illustrates the benefits to be obtained along the way as we work towards achieving the destination.
Short, medium and long term goals
Once a vision for your school’s digital future has been agreed you need to identify the strategic goals that are needed for achieving the vision. It is important that the selected strategic goals have been arrived at through the collection of evidence and analysis of trends, trajectories and influential signals that shape the present and can inform the future.
A plan for execution
Strategic objectives will only deliver digital transformation if they embed with the school’s improvement processes. This requires an approach that maintains accountability for achieving each objective and supports the delegated authority that enables objectives to be achieved. In addition, there must be meaningful milestones so that the organisation’s progress towards the objectives can be evaluated.
A communication strategy
To be effective, endorsement needs to come from the top of the school leadership team and the messages need to be aligned with your vision and values. Your school’s digital strategy should show how digital practice will support and enhance what you are already aiming to deliver as an organisation.
An evaluation process
It is important to measure your progress against your targets, so set out key milestones along with dates. SMART targets are a good way of doing this so your goals need to be:
The thought of developing, implementing and then overseeing a digital strategy in education might seem daunting, but it doesn’t have to be - the project management skills needed are the same as for any other project a school might take on. However the impact of a good digital strategy in a school can be huge, impacting not just teaching and learning, but the whole school community.
If you would like to find out more download our ebook “Delivering a successful digital strategy”. We share advice from a wide range of experts on how to build a robust plan.