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Digitization goes to school

Digitization goes to school: making a lasting difference for students at Ekeberg

Learn more about how digitization is helping to transform education at Ekeberg School: helping to better prepare students for a changing digital world.

Digitization has transformative powers. Administrators at Ekeberg School in Norway’s Holmestrand municipality have seen it for themselves. Their school had a solitary computer room and a single set of tablets distributed among 330 students. They were at risk of failing to meet the country’s academic standards—with some of the students finishing primary education while still lacking basic technology skills.

A turn-around here was achieved in part thanks to wise investments in modern IT. Recognizing that a lack of access to modern IT at the school had created significant gaps in the future opportunities for its students, work began on ensuring that Ekeberg School was properly equipped to better prepare children for the future labor market. Cooperating with Atea, the Ekeberg School became a future-focused, digital-friendly place for learning.

“The most important thing we did at Ekeberg was to raise competencies among employees,” says Charlotte Angelskår, Educational Advisor to the Holmestrand Municipality. “Ensuring quality digital learning materials played an important supporting role in that undertaking.”

The state’s Grade 7 standards set an important goalpost for this project. It requires that students be able to demonstrate—among other things—the ability to perform targeted searches using search engines, provide source references using digital content, and present their work digitally.

Improving communication between administrators and advisors

Tom Gjertsen, Atea’s Regional Director of Buskerud, Telemark and Vestfold explains how important it was throughout the project for the team to work both closely and openly with the Holmestrand Municipality. “As the strategic advisor throughout this and other digitization processes, we’ve learned a lot about working with professionals in education and healthcare. A really important step here is to ensure that day to day work gets communicated clearly between administrators and technical people.”

On the Holmestrand project, Atea brought in two seasoned business architects: Arild Fevang and Amund Sivertsen. They implemented a process in which meetings were scheduled regularly with the municipality's school management to review how IT could be used more widely. Following Atea’s recommendation, the municipality also hired an ICT supervisor who in turn was able to secure additional digital initiatives.

Creating a timely learning environment

The Holmestrand municipality wanted to create a digital learning environment that could be integrated fully into all subjects. Thus, computers were purchased for all students at the Ekeberg School, as well as tablets and digital boards for all classrooms. “All of this means an increase to learning outcomes, implemented in a timely manner,” says Angelskår. Teacher training is another important component of creating this bold new digital learning environment at the school. “We want to go beyond the textbook, beyond local boundaries and beyond borders,” Angelskår adds. “Ultimately, it means that the students will be motivated and prepared to meet the future and an ever-changing workplace.”

Adapted from original post on Atea.no

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