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Top 5 Reasons LEO Academy Trust is Ahead in Educational Technology

Leo Academy Trust

In December 2023, LEO Academy Trust, a MAT based in the UK, and Dr. Fiona Aubrey Smith released an in-depth research project on the use of technology across all schools within the trust. Over the past three years, LEO schools have consistently outperformed national averages by 14-23% and the research investigated the impact of education and technology on this remarkable performance.

Her report, “Changing Learning. Changing Lives. What happens when EdTech becomes PedTech,” presented the findings on how technology has raised standards and transformed practices. This report is based on an extensive study that includes 4,500 survey responses, 606 documents, 154 observations, 65 interviews, 24 focus groups, and hundreds of hours of professional discussion and reflection. It offers a comprehensive analysis as a narrative, a series of findings, and a set of recommendations for the future. In this blog post, we at Quizalize want you to explore the top five ways LEO Academy Trust is revolutionising education and delve into the concept of PedTech.

What is PedTech?

In today’s rapidly evolving educational landscape, technology plays an increasingly pivotal role. One remarkable example of this transformation is the journey of LEO Academy Trust. By integrating a more pedagogical approach with cutting-edge technology, LEO Academy Trust redefines how students learn and teachers teach.

PedTech, or Pedagogical Technology, refers to the strategic integration of technology into teaching practices to enhance learning outcomes. Unlike traditional EdTech, which often focuses on tools and devices, PedTech emphasizes the pedagogical principles that guide the use of technology in education. It’s about using technology as an add-on and a core component that supports and enhances the educational process. PedTech aims to create a more interactive, personalized, and effective learning environment where technology enables better teaching and learning practices.

The Top 5 Highlights from LEO Academy Trust’s PedTech Revolution

1. Digital Transformation Journey

In 2019, LEO Academy Trust embarked on a bold digital transformation journey. Recognizing the potential of technology to enhance education, they equipped every Key Stage 2 child with a Chromebook. They provided on-demand access to iPads or Chromebooks for Early Years and Key Stage 1 students. This initiative, costing £12 per child per month, aimed to revolutionize teaching and learning across nine schools, impacting 4,500 children and 600 staff members.

This ambitious move set the stage for a comprehensive digital ecosystem within the trust. By providing consistent access to digital tools, LEO Academy Trust created an environment where technology seamlessly integrates into everyday learning activities. This initiative wasn’t just about providing devices; it was about embedding technology into the fabric of the educational experience, ensuring that both students and teachers could harness its full potential.

2. Impact on Learning Outcomes

The digital transformation at LEO Academy Trust has led to remarkable improvements in learning outcomes. The attainment gap between LEO schools and national norms has widened significantly. Over the past three years, LEO schools have consistently outperformed national averages by 14-23%. Moreover, the proportion of children achieving greater depth in reading, writing, and mathematics at LEO is more than triple the national average.

These outcomes highlight the effectiveness of LEO’s approach to integrating technology with pedagogy. LEO Academy Trust has created an environment where students can thrive by focusing on personalized learning experiences and leveraging digital tools to support various learning styles. The significant gains in student achievement demonstrate that when technology is used effectively, it can be a powerful catalyst for academic success.

3. Reduction in SEN Register

Another significant impact of LEO Academy Trust’s digital transformation is the reduction in the number of children on the Special Educational Needs (SEN) register. The number of students requiring expensive intervention programs has decreased by around a third. This reduction is attributed to the inclusive practices facilitated by digital technology, which have helped support diverse learning needs.

By leveraging technology to create a more inclusive learning environment, LEO Academy Trust has been able to provide targeted support to students who need it most. Digital tools have enabled teachers to identify learning gaps more effectively and implement personalized interventions. This proactive approach not only reduces the need for intensive interventions but also ensures that all students have the opportunity to succeed.

4. Teacher and Classroom Efficiency

The shift from paper-based to digital tasks at LEO Academy Trust has profoundly impacted teacher and classroom efficiency. This transition has repurposed teacher capacity, equivalent to adding 11 full-time staff members across the trust. Digital tasks have increased classroom efficiency by 23%, allowing more time for targeted and inclusive learning. This increased efficiency has contributed significantly to the gains in student attainment.

Digital tools have streamlined administrative tasks, freeing up valuable time for teachers to focus on instruction and student engagement. By reducing the burden of paperwork and manual processes, technology has allowed teachers to dedicate more time to planning, collaboration, and personalized teaching. This shift not only enhances the quality of education but also improves job satisfaction among teachers, leading to a more motivated and effective workforce.

5. Staff and Student Digital Proficiency

One of the standout achievements of LEO Academy Trust’s digital transformation is the high level of digital proficiency among both staff and students. Nearly 15,000 digital badges have been earned by LEO students, and almost 75% of staff have certified digital skills. This level of digital proficiency is typically seen in much larger multi-academy trusts, highlighting LEO’s commitment to embedding digital skills at the heart of its educational approach.

The emphasis on digital proficiency ensures that both students and teachers are well-equipped to navigate the digital landscape. For students, this means developing essential skills that will serve them well in their future careers. For teachers, it means having the confidence and competence to integrate technology into their teaching practices effectively. This culture of digital literacy is a cornerstone of LEO Academy Trust’s success, fostering an environment where technology enhances learning and teaching at every level.

LEO Academy Trust’s journey is a testament to the transformative power of PedTech. By strategically integrating technology into their pedagogical practices, they have created an educational environment that supports personalized learning, enhances efficiency, and drives academic success. The top five highlights from their journey showcase the profound impact that a well-conceived digital transformation can have on education.

As we move forward in an increasingly digital world, the lessons from LEO Academy Trust’s experience can serve as a blueprint for other educational institutions. By embracing PedTech and focusing on the pedagogical principles that guide its use, schools can create a more inclusive, effective, and engaging learning environment for all students. The future of education lies in the seamless integration of technology and pedagogy, and LEO Academy Trust is leading the way.

Embracing Best Practices

At Quizalize, we are committed to embracing and promoting the best practices in applying technology to education, particularly within Multi Academy Trusts (MATs) across the UK. Inspired by the remarkable success of LEO Academy Trust, we have developed a pilot program designed to bring similar transformative benefits to other MATs.

Our two-week pilot program has already been adopted by over ten Multi Academy Trusts in 2024 alone. It is tailored to support schools in leveraging technology to enhance teaching and learning, improve efficiency, and foster a digital proficiency culture among students and staff.

Join An Exclusive MAT UK Pilot Program

We invite you to join our pilot program and experience the benefits of integrating technology with pedagogy firsthand. By participating, your MAT can gain insights into best practices, receive hands-on support, and witness the positive impact on learning outcomes and operational efficiency. Check the Stour Academy Trust case study here.

Contact us to learn more about our pilot program and how Quizalize can help your MAT embrace the future of education. Our team is ready to guide you through the process and help you unlock the full potential of PedTech for your schools.

By participating in our pilot program, you can create a more engaging, inclusive, and successful educational experience for your students and teachers. Join the growing number of MATs embracing the power of PedTech with Quizalize.

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