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Soundbyte 261: Another Brick in the Wall

25 September 2016

Every September since the year 2,000, the Scottish Learning Festival (“SLF”) has been held at the SECC (Scottish Exhibition & Conference Centre) in Glasgow and each year this conference attempts to inspire better teaching and learning by helping to create a confident teaching profession for the 21st century. This year saw myself, Denise and Hans pitch up a Summar.io stand, where we introduced our vision of a personalised, self-directed education environment, that supports education for all through engagement.

soundbyte-photo-01Education in Scotland had been changing over the last three years by way of a government program called: “Curriculum for Excellence,” which is simply known locally as: “CFE!” CFE attempts to focus a public (government) delivered education system for all, which prepares Scottish young people for their future outside school, no matter if this means higher & future education (university or college) or a job. CFE is more than just about educating students to pass exams but tries to develop our young people for what follows after school.

Where CFE has not delivered the promised success in Scotland; is in how lesions are prepared and delivered; both inside and outside the classroom! Teachers still stand up and present their lesion in a traditional practice going back hundreds of years and of course, this is where Summario can help! We (Luminis) therefore used SLF to present a vision of how education could be delivered in a different way, an inclusive way that engages our young people and therefore involves each and every student in their own education. Using our technology, we can lead students on a journey of learning, supported by the teacher but more of a coach, a subject-matter expert who ensures his or her class gets the most out of their subject in a highly personalised manor.

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On Wednesday morning, Hans delivered an inspirational presentation, where he reminded everyone that the world is changing faster than education can handle it! In a recent report by Deloitte, they describe a future where 286,000 Dutch young people will lose their job at least once in the next ten years due to some type of automation. Take this to the UK and it is more like 1.2 million young people so our education system needs to change and this must start with teachers supporting students to learn, rather than just teaching. As I think about my first YouTube video, there is only one song that comes to mind and it has to be: “Another Brick in the Wall,” by Pink Floyd. For me: this hit first released in 1979 has a lot in common with what we are trying to do with Summar.io. Our technology having the ability to free students from an education system that simply turns out more of the same and in today’s ever-changing world; that is no longer god enough!

So, what next for Summar.io here in the U.K.? Very simply we have three target markets:

1. Secondary education Scotland;
2. Secondary education England &
3. Commercial education and compliance.

The UK is a United Kingdom of four separate countries, all with their own government: England, Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales. With England and Scotland currently having the most active education markets, this is where Luminis will be dedicating our time with regards Summar.io in the UK. On top of this we will also target the private sector (commercial) and compliance based education and training markets, where there will be short term opportunities for us.

So the hard work of post conference in Scotland starts now! We’re taking a top down approach to Summar.io in partnership with interested parties such as: Microsoft and Google, with the support from the Systems integrators and of course Scottish education community, including the Scottish Government, local education authorities and schools. Our presence at SLF started with Hans’ inspirational speech and this has catapulted Luminis and our vision into the news so Summar.io got noticed this week! We therefore have a window of opportunity to grasp a desire for a change for the better system of education in Scotland, where the government have just announced a £100m fund to improve education through the digital medium.

As I close this soundbyte, I couldn’t finish without mentioning BREXIT and the simple fact Hans’ constantly reminds me that I am no longer a European. To be honest, I lost all my inspiration at that point so turned to another song with an education theme, which this time reminded me why the UK does so badly every year at the Eurovision song contest. I hope you don’t enjoy “Teenage Life,” by Daz Simpson and if you’re interested (probably not), this song came 19 out of 24 songs, when Greece hosted the Eurovision Song Contest in 2006.

Graeme

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