Deep inequalities in digital access still exist
According to the report, the digital divide is the biggest challenge school districts face.
Thirty-one percent of survey respondents said it was their biggest obstacle to maximizing student success this school year, followed by the impact of the summer slip (26 percent), a lack of technology training for teachers (13 percent) and a lack of district-wide technology and resources (6%).
Although delivering education through technology is a top priority for many regions, they will need to ensure equality and accessibility are their top priorities, according to the report.
explore: Find out how K-12 leaders ensure students in rural areas have access to Wi-Fi and devices.
When making technology investments, provinces should embrace simplicity
Regions will also need to be intentional about their technology investments in the growing educational technology market, especially amid budget cuts, according to the report. To simplify the decision-making process, school and district leaders can look at the techniques teachers already swear by.
Promethean found that 77 percent of survey respondents felt that desktop computers and laptops were the most used technology in their schools. Meanwhile, more than half (52 percent) chose interactive whiteboards or whiteboards, followed by tablets (39 percent).
Related: How can interactive displays enhance collaboration in the classroom?
Technological training for teachers is a must
Effective technology training will also be crucial moving forward. 43 percent of survey respondents said schools need to prioritize teacher training in technology to make distance and hybrid learning successful, according to the report. Meanwhile, 34 percent of teachers said their school lacks a formal technical strategy.
The report notes that “an effective implementation strategy begins with ensuring that all trainers are qualified and confident in the solutions they are expected to use, from interactive displays and 1:1 devices to software that supports online learning.” “Moreover, schools need to offer continuing professional development opportunities using educational technology to help teachers master developments in classroom technologies and abilities.”
Read more: How can schools improve teacher training for successful distance learning?
Educators continue to embrace innovation
Promethean has also found that teachers welcome innovation. The majority (69 percent) said they were “constantly striving to innovate” using technology.
The pandemic has also accelerated digital transformation in schools, which is rapidly shaping what education will look like and how it will be delivered in the coming years. Eighty-two percent said that combining the use of technology, traditional resources, and teaching methods is the most likely trend they will see in the next ten years. More specifically, respondents expect to see the largest growth in distance learning (63 percent), virtual learning (54 percent) and online content and resources (50 percent) in schools over the next three years.
According to the report, “In a post-COVID world, the classroom is no longer confined within four walls.” “Edtech will be the key to expanding even further.”