The School Leaders’ Summit, part of the Education Show, is a chance for School Leaders from schools across the country to learn, network and share educational best practice. A combination of case studies, panel debates and networking opportunities, the Summit covers a wide range of topics, which are obstacles facing school leaders today. Subjects include overcoming life with levels, using pupil premium effectively to raise student attainment, and using technology to enhance learning.
The Digital Leader led session entitled ‘Case Study: Creating a student digital leadership team and handing power to the students’, explored how transferring authority to the students by creating student Digital Leaders has transformed the way in which technology is used across Highfields School. The session also explored how to create a successful Digital Leader programme as well examined how to maintain momentum and how to hand over ownership of the programme to the students.
As always, the students were a credit to the school and had a wonderful, albeit exhausting, day. The students were also invited to take part in a ‘Meet the presenters’ session at the end of the day in which they explained what it means to be a Digital Leader.
Here are some the key points from their presentation:
Tips for creating a digital leadership team
- Build up suspense - Present the idea of Digital Leaders, put up posters – create a buzz to kick start campaign!
- Invite students to apply (Letter / Video – Be creative) Ask students to write an application or create short 1 min video on what makes them a Digital Leader.
- Draw up shortlist – Interview candidates (even better if student led). Interview process makes students feel they have earned role.
The role of Digital Leaders
- Support staff and students with the use of technology.
- Promote e-safety.
- Report to school governors.
- Test out new equipment and resources.
- Improve their understanding of technology.
- Share their knowledge and skills with others.
How to maintain momentum
- Keeping students interested by providing different challenges / responsibilities
- Planning for each half term – different focus / project
- Using badges / levels – Students aim to become experts in chosen field (Encourages ownership)
- Ensuring weekly scheduled meetings / appointments
- Entering competitions / participating in digital initiatives (e.g. BBC School Report, BAFTA Young Game Designer)
How to reward / recognise achievements
- Badges (Physical & Digital)
- DL OpenBadges (18 Level 1 – 3 badges mapped out to a Digital Leader framework)
- Trips (e.g. Education Show, BETT, Big Bang Fair)
What's in it for students – Quotes from student Digital Leaders
“When I’m training my teachers, I feel like I’m giving something back!” – Caitlin (Year 10)
“I felt respected when I spoke to school governors.” – Ashwin (Year 9)
“Being a Digital Leader has helped build my confidence.” – Suha (Year 8)
“I was terrified when asked to produce a video for a local business however, looking back, it was a amazing experience and something I can put on my C.V!” – Aaron (Year 10)