Douglas Community School
Digital Learning Plan
This document records the outcomes of our current digital learning plan, including targets and the actions we will implement to meet the targets.
1.1 School Details:
Douglas Community School is an all-boys Community School located in the heart of Douglas in the southern suburbs of Cork City. Founded in 1926 as a Juniorate, Colaiste Muire became a full secondary in 1965. The Presentation Order passed the management of the school to the local community in 1974, creating one of the country’s first Community Schools. DCS also provides adult and community programmes. Our first class facilities, educational, recreational and sporting, are much used by the wider community.
1.2 School Vision:
We pride ourselves on the care we give to our students, and strive to develop each student as an individual in an atmosphere of co-operation and collegiality. The school welcomes students from all backgrounds, cultures and faiths and from across the spectrum of all abilities, including students with special educational needs. A very high proportion of students continue their studies to third level. The student cohort, which currently stands at 540 students, is reflective of the broad social and economic spectrum of the catchment area.
We work hard to develop the full potential of every student, so that they leave the school well educated, self-confident, articulate, and with life skills and attitudes that will enable them to live fulfilling lives and contribute to the wellbeing of society.
In DCS we aim to integrate technology into the student experience and foster an environment of support and innovation. School leadership will provide resources and cultivate a supportive and collaborative teaching and learning environment for integrating technology as a meaningful and effective part of the educational process. Students will leave our school as confident, creative and productive users of new technologies, including ICT, and understand the impact of those technologies on society.
1.3 Brief account of the use of digital technologies in the school to date:
All staff use an iPad for teaching and learning.
The school uses the GAFE Suite ( Google Apps For Education)
We currently have a pilot iPad class in Yr1. Students have purchased iPads through a school organised system which are specifically used in and controlled by the school. We will canvas each successive Yr1 intake with the intention of rolling out the use of iPads across all classes.
All classrooms have an Interactive Whiteboard with Apple TV linked to teachers’ iPads.
We have three computer labs with 84 desktop computers in total. One of these rooms has the Solid Works Programme installed and is used for teaching Design and Communication Graphics.
We have 2 highspeed broadband networks (200Mbs and 300Mbs) with 22 Wifi access points throughout the building.
Our SEN Department has both desktops and iPads at their disposal. A number of SEN students use laptops or iPads to support their learning.
We are moving swiftly to a paperless school as we now communicate to parents via VSware and SMS. All school reports and notifications are transmitted via digital technology.
We have a school website and use Twitter, Facebook and Instagram to communicate to our stakeholders and the wider community.
We currently use VS Ware to record student data, attendance, behaviour and assessment results. Parents can access VSware to view timetables, assessment results and behaviour.
Computer Studies in on our Senior Cycle curriculum.
TY students receive training in internet safety from a local business (Trend Micro) and they in turn mentor 1styear students.
Yr1 entrants will be digitally assessed using NGRT and PTM prior to attending and the full range of CAT4 testing will be applied at various stages to monitor student progress and ensure that teaching and learning suits the individual need of each student.
- The focus of this Digital Learning Plan
We undertook a digital learning evaluation in our school during the period January 2019 toMarch 2019. We evaluated our progress using the following sources of evidence:
A Core Digital Learning Group has been established to work on the development of the plan and the development of Digital Learning in the school. The group includes Pat Barry (Principal), Chris Hickey (D.Principal), Daithi O’Leary, John O’Leary, Brid O’Dwyer, Stephen Lynch(Digital Media,PR) Neil Bronks, Cian O’Mahony, David Hales (External IT Support).
An Analysis of DCS Usage of Google Classroom in the academic year 2018-19 was undertaken. This analysis focused on the teacher/student usage of Google Classroom and was compared to data gathered from the previous academic year.
An online attitudinal survey was conducted with the students in the Yr1 iPad Class with regard to their experiences.
An online attitudinal survey was conducted with the parents of the students in the Yr1 iPad Class with regard to their experiences.
2.1 The dimensions and domains from the Digital Learning Framework being selected
Domain 4 – Teachers’ Collective/Collaborative Practice.
2.2 The standards and statements from the Digital Learning Framework being selected
|Teachers value and engage in professional development and professional collaboration.||Teachers engage in professional development and work with colleagues to help them select and align digital technologies with effective teaching strategies to expand learning opportunities for all students.|
2.3. These are a summary of our strengths with regards digital learning
The school’s digital infrastructure is excellent.
A Core Digital Learning Group works towards embedding the use of digital technology in DCS.
Digital technology for teaching and learning is used in all classes.
Apple iPads and the GAFE suite are used extensively in all classes.
The move towards embedding the use of Google Classroom in all classes is progressing. Almost 40% of classes are receiving assessment/homework or classwork via Google Classroom. This represents an increase of 100% compared to the previous academic year.
The entire staff have received extensive internal and external CPD in digital technologies.
The entire staff have received inservice from VSware.
The entire staff have attended Apple Teacher inservice with our Apple provider CompuB.
The entire staff have engaged in Apple Teacher online digital training and a number have become Apple Certified teachers..
The entire staff have received three Google Classroom inhouse inservices provided by members of the Digital Learning Group.
DCS has a designated iPad class in Yr1 and intends to extend this programme in consultation with our stakeholders.
We are engaging with the CAT4 assessment modes to monitor and assess student progress.
2.4This is what we are going to focus on to improve our digital learning practice further
To embed and increase the staff usage of Google Classroom across all classes thus increasing the digital learning opportunities for our students.
To develop a BYOD policy.
To roll out the DCS School App and increase traffic on the school’s social media platforms.
To expand the pilot iPad class programme to a whole school approach for future Yr1 intake.
- Our Digital Learning plan
On the next page we have recorded:
- The targetsfor improvement we have set
- The actionswe will implement to achieve these
- Who is responsiblefor implementing, monitoring and reviewing our improvement plan
- How we will measure progressand check outcomes (criteria for success)
As we implement our improvement plan we will record:
- The progressmade, and adjustmentsmade, and when
- Achievement of targets(original and modified), and when
Digital Learning Action Plan
|DOMAIN: Domain 4 – Teachers’ Collective/Collaborative Practice.|
|STANDARD: Teachers value and engage in professional development and professional collaboration.|
|STATEMENT: Teachers engage in professional development and work with colleagues to help them select and align digital technologies with effective teaching strategies to expand learning opportunities for all students.|
|TARGETS: Teachers to engage with peers and cpd to develop a wholeschool collaborative digital learning structure which enhances digital learning opportunities for students.|
(What needs to be done?)
(When is it to be done by?)
|PERSONS / GROUPS RESPONSIBLE|
(Who is to do it?)
|CRITERIA FOR SUCCESS|
(What are the desired outcomes?)
(What resources are needed?)
|Embed and increase the staff usage of Google Classroom through continuous cpd, peer workshops, screencasts and tutorials.|
Develop a BYOD policy with input from the staff, student council, parents association and the BOM.
Roll out the DCS School App and increase traffic on the school’s social media platforms by increasing staff involvement in content creation and by increasing parental, community traffic.
Expand the pilot iPad class programme to a whole school approach for future JC intake by meeting staff/parents to provide info and feedback on the pilot group’s progress.
August 2019 and each subsequent school year commencement date.
|Management, Digital Learning Group.|
Management in consultation with stakeholders.
Management, PR Post Holder,
Management, Digital Learning Group
|Increase the number of classes engaging with Google Classroom by 20%.|
BYOD adopted by BOM and published to school community.
Successful roll out/take up of app. Traffic on social media platforms to increase by 10%
Increased uptake of the iPad initiative. The number of designated iPad classes to increase to at least 2 classes.
|Planning time to develop material and deliver cpd in Google Classroom. Management support for staff attendance at IT related cpd.|
Management planning and support for School App and iPad initiative.
(How are we progressing? Do we need to make adjustments? Have we achieved our targets?)
|Use data analytics from our IT system to continually monitor and periodically review in DLG the usage of Google Classroom in the school.|
Use of data analytics on school social media platforms and on School App to monitor progress in terms of traffic and usage.
Periodic attitudinal surveys of iPad students and parents re: experience.