Digital Strategy for Schools (2015-2020) Launched in Mercy Inchicore

The ‘Digital Strategy for Schools (2015-2020), Enhancing Teaching, Learning & Assessment’, which includes a €210m investment in digital technology in schools, was launched yesterday by Minister for Education and Skills, Jan O’Sullivan, TD, at Mercy Secondary School in Inchicore, Dublin.

The Education Minister Jan O’Sullivan has said it is the biggest ever investment in technology in schools, with more than €200m to be spent over five years.

O’Sullivan has said it (the Digital Strategy) aims to bring all schools up to a good standard, although it is not yet known which ones will get a share of the funding.

“We are going to take the time next year really to figure out what is best, I mean different schools are in different places,” Minister O’Sullivan.

“Some of them do not have high speed broadband at all, others do, some have a lot of IT equipment, others do not. So we are going to work out what each school needs.

“We don’t have a set amount for each school at this point.”

Among the key points of the Digital Strategy are:

  • Dedicated multi-annual funding to schools to invest in technology
  • Build on the successful roll-out of high-speed broadband to every second-level school by investing in high-speed wifi networks in every school
  • Integration of digital skills in the curriculum and in assessment
  • Develop opportunities for students to take an in-depth ICT course at Leaving Cert, as well as embedding digital skills within other subjects
  • Promotion of the use of e-portfolios at primary and post-primary level
  • Provide enhanced digital content to schools, including working with cultural institutions, sporting bodies and other to expand this range of resources
  • Embed ICT skills as part of initial teacher education and ongoing training for teachers
  • Work with stakeholders to promote safe and responsible use of the internet and social media, including providing new resources to schools to better prevent cyber-bullying