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Before promoting 'workload-saving' tech, we should speak to the experts – teachers themselves, says NAHT

Today, as the Department for Education publishes its Ed Tech Strategy, school leaders’ union NAHT welcomes the development of a national strategy and urges the government to speak to teachers themselves about the ways in which technology can add to, as well as reduce workload.

James Bowen, Director of Policy at school leaders’ union NAHT said: “Some technology has had a positive impact on the classroom and has enhanced learning, but it is vital to take a strategic approach to its use.

“There are many examples where technology has inadvertently added to teacher workload, rather than reduced it, so it is welcome to see the Secretary of State putting workload reduction right at the heart of his plans.

“The use of tracking software often means that schools end up analysing data in a myriad of different ways, not all of them useful. Interactive whiteboards have seen many teachers spending their evenings designing all-singing and dancing slides to add the ‘wow factor’ to every lesson. And plain old email, when not used proportionately, can play havoc with your work-life balance.

“If technology companies are interested in helping to tackle the workload issue through IT, then the first thing they need to do is spend time listening to teachers. School budgets and teachers’ time are already at breaking point. We need to be sure that new technology genuinely makes teachers’ lives easier and demonstrably adds to pupils’ learning experiences before splashing the cash on shiny new kit.”

Press and Media contacts:

Steven George
NAHT Head of Press and Media
01444 472886
07970 907730

Rose Tremlett 
Senior Press Officer 
07545 354363

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