NZEALS conference presentation

Today I had the opportunity to make a presentation to the NZEALS conference being held in Tauranga. I was in Wellington at the time, participating in the DEANZ conference, but took the opportunity to make the link to Tauranga via video conference (thanks to the folks at asnet).  The NZEALS committee had asked me to share my thinking about the future direction for education in NZ, focusing on blended learning, the role of online communities of practice in this, and the emergence of networked schooling models. The essence of my message was that we must move our thinking beyond the … Continue reading NZEALS conference presentation

Pedagogically Driven..#2

Pedagogy driven View more PowerPoint from Derek Wenmoth I presented the model shown in the slideshow above to a group of teachers representing most of the secondary schools in Christchurch yesterday. The event was held by the GCSN, focusing on our strategic planning for the year as we look at the possibilities of working together in a fibre-enabled network, with video conferencing facilities now available in each of their schools.  The concept of how we make pedagogically driven decisions about technology investment is a question I encounter regularly in the work I do – and I shared this framework in … Continue reading Pedagogically Driven..#2

Demand-side study released

The Commerce Commission has today released the second of three issues papers relating to the uptake of high speed broadband ahead of a public conference in February 2012. The paper is in two parts and examines the potential demand for high speed broadband from the education and health sectors   I was one of those interviewed for the education paper by the author, Ernie Newman, and am impressed with what he's done to bring together a broad range of perspectives and thinking to deliver a concise and clear view for a way forward.    Key conclusions reached in the education … Continue reading Demand-side study released

Shaking Up Christchurch Education

As the war drew to a close, the Bretton Woods conference was the culmination of some two and a half years of planning for postwar reconstruction by the Treasuries of the U.S. and the UK. U.S. representatives studied with their British counterparts the reconstitution of what had been lacking between the two world wars: a system of international payments that would allow trade to be conducted without fear of sudden currency depreciation or wild fluctuations in exchange rates—ailments that had nearly paralyzed world capitalism during the Great Depression. (source: Wikipedia) Over the past month or so it's been my privilege … Continue reading Shaking Up Christchurch Education


An article in this morning’s Herald titled “Hate your work? Then bring your own PC” comes as a timely reminder of one of the big issues schools will face in the coming few years – the provision an support of computer equipment for staff and students. I see this as the convergence of two key drivers: the increasing cost to schools of providing students with access to up-to-date computers, and of maintaining these and the software installed on them; and the increasing personalisation of all things in education, including the choice of where, when and with what students (and teachers) … Continue reading BYOC

Connecting Communities

Over the past couple of weeks I’ve been pre-occupied with events here in Christchurch, and participation in various groups and projects aimed at providing assistance to schools here in the wake of the earthquake. This has involved everything from working at a local level to make online resources available, and provide support for teachers developing online courses, through to advocating for the fibre connections to schools, discussions around the development of an NEN and the future development of the VLN! On Monday I attended a hui in Ashburton in support of the work of the Cantatech and Westnet clusters as … Continue reading Connecting Communities

Resources for Canterbury Schools

There’s been a lot going on here in Christchurch over the past couple of weeks since the 6.3 earthquake wreaked havoc in our city. Our schools are now gradually opening up again, but many face difficulty in gaining access to resources that are no longer accessible in buildings that are out of bounds, or exist on servers or laptops that still lie in ruined buildings. In addition, we have a large number of students who must be catered for during times they are not physically at school, including students who are sharing schools for half days, or others who are … Continue reading Resources for Canterbury Schools

Learning without limits

This morning I attended the Ministry of Education’s Learning Without Limits seminar in Christchurch. Around 100 principals, teachers, BOT members and other interested parties came to hear Douglas Harre and Marg McLeod from the Ministry of Education share an update on the progress being made towards the government’s plan for ultra-fast broadband in schools. The basis of the vision is: 97% NZ schools (99.7% of students) will have access to UFB (100megabits/second) by 2016 3% remote schools will have access to fast broadband (10Mbps) by other means eg.satellite or point-to-point wireless Crown Fibre Holdings (CFH) and Local Fibre Companies (LFCs) … Continue reading Learning without limits

Towards the networked school….

I spent quite a bit of today working on an introductory section to a handbook that will be published shortly for New Zealand schools that are already or are interested in becoming a part of a Learning Community Online on the Virtual Learning Network. The diagram above is a summary of a section in what I’ve been writing that attempts to summarize the changes we’re experiencing in moving from traditional teaching and learning environments towards the concept of the networked school in a virtual environment. You can download a PDF version of the diagram and explanation here:  The emerging Networked … Continue reading Towards the networked school….

GCSN website launch

I had the privilege of attending the official launch of the Greater Christchurch Schools Network website yesterday afternoon at Burnside High School – attended by around 200 principals and education leaders from Christchurch schools, plus various representatives of the local business community who have been supporting this endeavour, including enable networks and the Canterbury Development Corporation. CORE Education also got a profile for the contribution it has made to the development of the GCSN community. Guest of honour was Minister of Education, Anne Tolley, who spoke positively about the potential of fibre connectivity to schools and the ways in which … Continue reading GCSN website launch