(Posted by Fiona)
This term’s network meeting took place last Thursday (18th Nov) and proved to be a full and interesting afternoon. The first guest speaker was Diana Monahan, Kirklees Sensory Impairment Service who gave a presentation on adapting computers for visually impaired children. The excellent introduction had us all simulating impaired peripheral vision, which really brought home the challenges for children with this type of visual impairment. Diana explained the different types of visual impairment, and how computers can be adapted as appropriate for individual children. Here is the presentation and some useful information and handouts:
Helen Daykin from Espresso gave an update on the latest features in the product. She showed how straightforward it is to extract videos from Espresso to use in pupils own work, or to embed in a learning platform. She also demonstrated the latest search tools, which allow teachers to locate relevant lesson resources more quickly. Espresso are currently offering a free trial of the full product for Kirklees schools. See the flyer below for full details:
The final guest was Andrew Flowerdew from Innovicity. Andrew first worked in Kirklees as a consultant for Tribal on the BSF project. He also works with other LAs across the country. Andrew explained the changes to school email accounts which will happen over the next few months. All Kirklees schools will be switched over from the current Squirrel Mail system to Google Mail by the end of January 2011. Accounts will be set up for free for teachers with the email address email@example.com; it will also be possible to set up pupil email accounts for a charge, schools can have pupil accounts set up for £100 so long as they express an interest by the end of the month. Staff accounts will be put in relevant groups such as office, head and ICT to ensure that people receive relevant emails from Kirklees.
Andrew also demonstrated Moople, which is a portal to access the new email system. Moople also provides another way of accessing free online applications and Google Apps for Education.
For further information on Gmail for schools contact Tim Green in the ICT Projects team:
The next meeting will take place on Thursday 10th March 1.15 – 4.15 pm. An agenda will be sent to schools several weeks before.