Technology in Schools
Alberta’s education system is a leader in the use of technology in teaching and learning. New information technologies create options for how teachers teach, how students learn and how classrooms look and operate.
Examples of Alberta’s innovation in learning technology include such initiatives as Emerge One-to-One Laptop Learning, Technology in High School Success, Provincial Approach to Student Information (PASI) and LearnAlberta.ca.
Learning and Technology Policy Framework (2013)
To enable the vision of Inspiring Education, Alberta Education consulted with more than 1,500 Albertans from across the province to develop a new Learning and Technology Policy Framework. This document provides leadership and strategic direction for government and school authorities to develop policies for the innovative and effective use of technology in K-12 schools. The policy framework identifies five policy directions: Student-Centred Learning, Research and Innovation, Professional Learning, Leadership and Access, Infrastructure and Digital Learning Environments.
Safety of Wireless Networks in Schools
The Ministry of Education occassionally receives inquiries from parents and school authority staff regarding the safety of wireless networks in schools. Education continually monitors the information available regarding wireless network safety. Based on the evaluations of such organizations as Alberta Health, Health Canada and the World Health Organization, Education has developed the Wireless Networks and Safety Fact Sheet. This fact sheet aligns with Alberta Health's own fact sheet: WiFi in Schools.
Technology Briefings for School Authority Senior Leadership
Alberta Education, in consultation with the College of Alberta School Superintendents (CASS), is developing a series of Technology Briefings to help school authority leadership become familiar with emerging technology trends. The first briefing, released in April 2013, aims to help superintendents and other school authority leaders prepare to make effective, well-informed decisions about Cloud Computing that will support student learning. The second briefing, released in September 2013, explores the importance of considering Digital Citizenship at the district level. In May 2014, a third briefing was released on the Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) approach to student access.
Digital Citizenship Policy Development Guide (August 2012)
This guide is intended to help school authorities develop their own unique digital citizenship policy, based on the needs of their students and schools. The guide follows the framework set out by the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE), that advocates educating students about appropriate online behaviour. The online Digital Citizenship Needs Assessment Tool is also available.
Bring Your Own Device: A Guide for Schools (June 2012)
A province-wide community of practice developed this guide that examines the use of Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) models in schools. It looks at the potential opportunities and benefits, as well as the considerations, risks and implications that arise when schools allow students and staff to use personally owned devices.
iPads: What are we learning? (March 2012)
In Fall 2011, Alberta Education hosted the one-day iPads – What are we learning? event for school authorities exploring the use of iPads in schools. This report summarizes the findings of the day and how Alberta schools are using iPads for learning.
An updated copy of the Wireless Local Area Network (WLAN) Best Practices Guide is now available. The Guide, originally developed in 2007 to provide Information Technology staff in schools and school authorities with technical advice on implementing wireless networks, has been updated to reflect advancements in wireless network technology.
Recent Technology Initiatives
Baseline Technology Assessment
Alberta Education has contracted with IBM Canada Ltd. to conduct a two-phase Baseline Technology Assessment for all public, separate, Francophone and charter school authorities in the province. This is the first time the province has conducted such an assessment, and the results will be critical to help inform effective decision-making by all education leaders.