Picking up the guitar again, knowing that my friends were by my side and an audience had travelled to see us made me feel a mixture of nerves and excitement. It had been years since our last performance as we had become tired of life on the road but if Take That, Bros and the Spice girls could get back together again, why couldn’t we? We’re not everyone’s cup of tea but by working together, in harmony, we knew we could play something special for the people who like what we do.
Understanding our strengths
You may be wondering why I’m talking about band life but actually, it has quite a close relationship to what we do at Concero. Each member has a different job; one person plays the guitar, somebody else drums and a couple of us sing but we all have the same goals. We all want to create music that people enjoy and we all want to have a good time. At Concero, we have different roles too. Some people research the best products on the market, some people build and install infrastructure in schools and some people back up important documents to the ‘mysterious’ (unless you’ve read Ben and Chris’ great articles) Cloud. What’s important is that we all have the same vision, to make the best possible teaching and learning environments for MATs (Multi Academy Trusts) and schools.
Striking the right chord
How ICT is working in the background to make life easier for MAT CEOs, teachers, parents and pupils is a vital part of achieving that vision but of course, what happens in the classroom matters too. That’s where I come in. My role is mixed but a large part of it is supporting teachers to create an impactful curriculum that makes use of technology to come up with powerful, yet flexible lesson plans that strike the right chord with pupils and parents alike.
Of course, technology isn’t all roses. The more mature will have all dealt with ‘the blue screen of death’ and the forever spinning wheel indicating a loading application that never loads. Even as those problems started to fade, new problems arose. With the dawn of social media, the ever-growing e-commerce sector and the rise of streaming services came trolls, predators and fraudsters. These people aren’t new but their anonymity has risen and their opportunity for destruction has grown.
Staying in tune
It’s not something to be frightened of but it is something to be aware of. As long as you understand the tricks that can be played and you keep your technology ‘in tune’, so to speak, safety online shouldn’t be a problem. Having said that, it can be hard to know the best practices, which is why a major part of my role is training teachers, parents and pupils in hazard recognition and prevention.
EPICT (European Pedagogical ICT Licence) and 360 online safety mark
Ofsted recommend that every school has at least 1 teacher accredited in EPICT and we agree; it is the clearest and most effective way to learn about e-safety currently available. That’s why part of my role is training between 1 and 6 teachers to gain that qualification. For subject leaders, the 360 online safety mark also makes a big difference so alongside helping parents to navigate online risks and showing pupils how to stay away from unwanted online attention, I guide staff members to the full 360 safety accreditation.
And My Father Dwelt In A Tent
All of this is part of the service with Concero as we believe that online safety is as important to the teaching and learning environment for MATs and schools as any other technological provision. To find out more, you can contact me or anyone at Concero directly. If you prefer, you can come to one of And My Father Dwelt In A Tent’s gigs and have a chat afterwards. You don’t have to dance but we think you might anyway!