Cheap, reusable and accessible IT for schools

Right. What’s the definition of a really good bit of primary school IT? Is it ambitious and over-arching, integrating dozens of systems, forcing new behaviours all over the place and generally rending the fabric of reality? Or is it something really simple and quick to build that benefits the whole school community, costs nothing and can be re-used indefinitely? Here’s an example: Matt Johnson, switched-on deputy head at Fair Field Junior in Radlett (where I’m a parent governor) has put together a page at the school web site that uses Twitter, some Javascript and MMS photos to track a school trip.

Year four have gone to an activity centre in Staffordshire and Mr Lock, one of the supervising teachers, is twittering and sending photos from his phone. Result: more engaged parents, a fascinating and permanent real-time record of the trip as it unfolds and a system that can be reused every time the school goes away. The page is here and you can follow the trip on Twitter at twitter.com/fairfieldtrip.

I wrote about one of Mr Johnson’s earlier Twitter projects—which is still running because the cost of maintaining it is essentially zero—here.

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