New Zealand is
due to the recent
introduction of high-speed broadband Internet
to schools across the country.
The New Zealand Information and
Communications Technology Strategic Framework
for Education states that all students should be
able to access information and communications
technology at school and have the opportunity to
become confident and capable users.
To help, New Zealand’s Ministry of
Education funds a program called the
Enrollment for Education Solutions (EES),
which allows schools to provide licensed
programs for software. The Ministry also runs a
dedicated video conferencing bridge and other
e-learning services for schools.
Technology is also being used for innovative
professional development for K-12 teachers. The
University of Auckland’s Faculty of Education
uses a webcasting platform called Mediasite by
Sonic Foundry to meet e-Learning requirements
in schools across the country. The program offers
professional development across all regular
curriculum areas, and a new bilingual webcast
program is also offered to educators who teach in
the indigenous language, Te Reo Maori.
A variety of other technologies are also being
used in New Zealand schools. The TELA laptop
scheme, for example, gives laptops to all teachers
to enable them to integrate e-Learning into all
their programs. This initiative gives educators
the opportunity to access a leased laptop for
three years, with the Ministry of Education
funding two-thirds of the total cost. Interactive
whiteboards are being replaced by interactive
flat screen TVs in some schools, as fast-speed
broadband rollout is introduced nationally.
Cost for schools to access technology
continues to be a challenge, but in today’s 21st
century classroom, technology is a necessity.
Mark Dashper is a facilitator for Faculty of
Education at The University of Auckland, New