Friday, 12 October 2012

Learning In Digital Wales 3

This is the third post in a series looking at the National developments in Wales to promote the use of digital technologies and resources for learners aged 3 to 19.
  1. Task & Finish Group Review
  2. Ministerial Response
Lots of work in the background by government officials, interest groups, practitioner panels etc led to an invitation to tender for developing an 'All Wales Learning Platform' affectionately titled Hwb.

The contract was awarded in September to Learning Possibilities
(see their News Item:

A series of meetings with key stakeholders are scheduled during the next few months to outline details of the proposed platform.

The National Digital Collection of teaching and learning resources will be accessed via the Hwb. The development of a system for unique learner IDs has been mentioned and this would provide a huge step forward in learner transition and progression.

An iTunes U channel will also be created to showcase the best courses available in Wales.

The National Digital Learning Council for Wales will oversee the direction and development of these initiatives plus other longer term plans. The council met yesterday for the first time and members include:
  • Dr Tom Crick (Senior Lecturer in Computer Science, Cardiff Metropolitan University and Computing at School),
  • Janet Hayward (Headteacher Cadoxton Primary School, Vale of Glamorgan),
  • Sue Burnett (University of Glamorgan, RCT),
  • Maldwyn Pryse (Estyn),
  • Geraint James (ADEW ICT, Director of Education, Conwy),
  • Simon Pridham (Headteacher Casllwchwr Primary School, Swansea),
  • Hannah Mathias (St David’s College, Cardiff),
  • Peter Sishton (eSkills UK) and
  • Chris Britten (Headteacher Ashgrove Special School, Vale of Glamorgan).
Professional experts and "associate members" (ie students) will also be involved from time to time. I'll post in a month or so with details of the team of 'Digital Leaders' who will work directly with schools and teachers.

Things seem to be moving quickly and so they need to if The Minister is to have a Hwb to unveil in December. I have seen the 12th December mentioned as a possible date.

I'm not given to superstition but 12/12/12 seems to have a rather eerie feel about it.
At least that gives us 9 days before the end of the 'Fourth Mayan World Age' on 21st December when cataclysmic* events have been predicted.

I guess another interpretation could be that the cataclysmic* event is happening 9 days early in Wales - hold on to your hats - only time will tell.

TGIF (only 11 more to go - possibly !-)

*note - some writers see the translation from the Mayan not as cataclysmic but as transformative (hope on the horizon?).

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