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§ Designated ‘Training School’ under Better Training 2001 initiative

§ Supporting Student Teachers Training

London 19th November 2001. Birkdale High School, Southport, has implemented Promethean’s ACTIVboard and video conferencing technology to create a ‘Virtual Learning Environment’ to support Newly Qualified Teachers (NQT’s). Promethean’s combined ACTIVboard systems and video conferencing technologies are enabling student teachers to spend real time with experts and principle education examiners whilst getting hands-on teaching experience.

Working with an intake of 60 graduate teachers progressing through their Post Graduate Certificate of Education (PGCE) at Edge Hill College, Ormskirk, Birkdale have found Promethean’s integrated system technology invaluable, Graham Fletcher, Birkdale’s Better Training Co-ordinator says, “The prospects of this virtual learning environment provided by Promethean’s ICT technology are vast. Our students, examiners and mentors are all actively involved in ensuring that innovative methods of teacher training are not only achieving better results, but are encouraging an increasing number of graduates into the profession.”

At the centre of the government’s initiative for improving education is the need to attract graduates into teaching, the DfES (Department for Education & Skills) are supporting this remit by encouraging schools, like Birkdale, who undertake teacher training to explore the delivery of dynamic lessons across the curriculum using Information Communications Technology (ICT). Birkdale High School’s work in this area has earned them ‘Training School’ status.

Birkdale were awarded ‘Better Training 2001 School’ as part of a £2 million initiative by the DfES. The school put forward a bid to enhance teacher training focussing largely on ICT outside school time. The bid consisted of 3 strands:

1. Video Conference – Using Promethean supplied video conference technology and interactive whiteboards to link English ICT teachers and examiners – providing lectures and Question and Answer sessions.

2. Internet – Using the internet as a teaching resource for training teachers.

3. On line support – A chat room where trainee teachers can go outside school hours which is visited by teacher mentors who can help with solving teaching problems/lesson plans etc.

Lee Hornby, Promethean’s product manager says “ It is always a pleasure to create technological solutions which support the innovative delivery of learning. We will continue to work with Birkdale and endeavour to support their vision of ‘Tomorrow`s Teachers’.”

About Birkdale High School

Birkdale High School is the only all boys’ 11-16 school within the Sefton Education Authority. Situated in the southern area of Southport, the school has an excellent reputation and is over-subscribed. The 880 pupils on roll are drawn from all areas of the town and beyond.

The school has very high educational standards, firm discipline, a caring ethos and sporting tradition. This is reflected in the school receiving an excellent OfSTED report in spring 2001 and being recognised in Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector of Schools Annual Report as an outstanding school. Further recognition has been the award of Beacon School status, Investors in people and Sports Mark Award.

About Promethean

Promethean is dedicated to the development and supply of ICT solutions as teaching tools in the classroom to accelerate learning gains across the whole curriculum. Based around the world's most advanced whiteboard/software combination, Promethean's systems create an interactive teaching environment that enables multimedia delivery to whole class groups.

Solutions include: Videoconferencing (codecs and peripherals), Interactive Whiteboards, Wide format displays for data and video, Multimedia software, all encompassing solutions for presentations, education, training, collaborative working, distance and flexible learning.

For more information, photographs and interview opportunities contact:

Donna Shaw
Marketing Communications
Promethean Ltd
Tel: 01254 298511

Rachel Argyle
BlueBird Associates Ltd
Tel: 01491 842940

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