Ballagh National School awarded Digital School of Distinction Award
There are over 3,000 primary schools in Ireland and Ballagh National School, Kilrooskey, Roscommon is in the proud and unique position of being one of only 220 schools to have achieved Digital School of Distinction status nationally. The Digital Schools of Distinction award is a flagship programme to promote and acknowledge best practice and excellence in the use of ICT to deliver the best educational experience for pupils at primary level. It is a nationally recognised award and is accredited by the Department of Education.
In Ballagh National School every pupil from Junior Infants to Sixth Class gets opportunities to succeed in a creative and safe digital environment. On a daily basis technology is integrated into our teaching and cooperative group work sessions. We have a wealth of digital resources and applications which include our school website, interactive whiteboards, I pads, laptops, digital camera, visualiser and software to enhance pupil learning. We are a smaller school and have the advantage of a greater pupil to ICT access ratio.
To achieve the award the school had to self – evaluate and were externally assessed and validated on fulfilling and excelling in identified criteria within the areas: Leadership and Vision, ICT Integration in the Curriculum, School ICT Culture, Continued Professional Development, Resources and Infrastructure.
The benefits of becoming a school of Digital Distinction include 1,000 euro worth of printing material for the school, the Digital School flag, Award plaque, a HP wireless printer as well as technical support and opportunities for networking with other digital schools.
We would like to sincerely acknowledge the assistance we have received from a variety of people without which this award would not be possible – the staff, pupils, parents and Board of Management of Ballagh National School who are always willing to embrace new technologies and innovations. The commitment of our very active Parents Association and local community, whose fundraising efforts and proceeds have always enabled the purchase of the most current technology including laptops and I pads. We would also like to thank Mr Noel Sheeran who motivated us to apply for this award.
Becoming a Digital School of Distinction is a tremendous honour for our school and it gives deserved recognition of how the whole school community working together can ensure the use of technology in our classrooms. It impacts positively on pupils’ learning experiences and is highly motivational as we look forward to embracing technology further in our classrooms in the future.