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How international schools are responding to education technology by Diane Glass

I’ve just returned from the GESS Dubai conference, where I was presenting to international schools and to education suppliers. One of my sessions was a panel session which included the Executive Principal at Al Yasat Private School in Abu Dhabi Jake Madden. His school has around 1,200 students and follows a US curriculum.

During the session, Jake discussed the opportunities and the challenges that education technology creates for the school: “This is a vexed sword for schools,” he told the audience, explaining that, like many schools, Al Yasat uses one-to-one devices, and a plethora of apps and online platforms for student and teacher learning. However, he said that there’s a growing bank of research now illuminating some of the impact on learning outcomes if schools rely too heavily on technology. “We try to use a mixed approach to ensure a balanced learning programme, particularly in the younger grades,” he said.

Where the school is enhancing its technology, is for tracking and evaluation. “We are increasing our teacher use of technology to harness the learning data gathered across school,” he explained. “From monitoring attendance, to analysing instructional focus, to parental contact, our intent is to be better informed,” he added.

 

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