The views of this article are the perspective of the author and may not be reflective of Confessions of the Professions.
Teachers Are Spending Their Own Earnings On Technology Resources, Despite £10 Million Government Edtech Funding Programme
RS Components has surveyed teachers across the UK to get their views on educational technology, its impact on everyday learning and whether their schools are investing enough. The full ‘State of EdTech’ report can be found here.
Despite the launch of a £10 million UK government strategy for EdTech in schools last year, there are still gaps in funding left by a decade of budget cuts. With more than 1 in 10 (14%) teachers admitting they’ve never heard of EdTech and over half (54%) of public school teachers saying there is a lack of training available, many teachers aren’t being given the resources to adapt to this new way of learning.
Here are some key findings from the report that you might be interested in:
£10 million of Government funding has been allocated to EdTech, yet 37% of teachers have spent around £40 on supplies for students due to a lack of funding, and over half (54%) of all teachers revealed that funding and resources for EdTech have actually been cut at their school. As a result, teachers may be left without the right resources to teach, meaning their pupils may be missing out on developmental opportunities within education.
More than 1 in 10 (14%) teachers have never heard of EdTech with a further 36% saying they have heard of it but don’t know what it is. As a result, teachers may not be equipped to implement technology, leaving schools at risk of investing thousands of pounds into EdTech that fails to provide additional value.
Regular use of technology in the classroom has more than tripled compared to 10 years ago, when only 1 in 5 teachers were using technology to help aid their teaching. With 4 in 5 teachers currently using EdTech in the classroom, any funding issues majorly affect syllabuses, from primary through to tertiary education levels.
Music, Design & Technology and IT are the subjects where EdTech is propped up by teacher contributions the most. These subjects often rely on EdTech to be taught to a modern standard, whether that be through music software, design programmes, or coding developer packages.
The UK EdTech sector is expected to reach a value of £3.4 billion by 2021, but areas of the UK are falling behind, with Northern Ireland having the least access to EdTech. The findings reveal that 3 in 4 (75%) of teachers in Northern Ireland said the children they teach don’t have enough access to EdTech, with the North East, West Midlands and Greater London also struggling.