In just two months, the focus of the education community will be firmly on Bett 2013 and the technologies that are set to inspire future generations to success both in the classroom and beyond.
Ahead of the event, Capita SIMS (stand B250) have released the results of a survey which reveal that 91 per cent of local authorities reported over 75 per cent of their primary schools now use a management information system (MIS) to spot any patterns of poor attendance.
Graham Cooper, Head of Product Strategy at Capita SIMS, explains: “The government has put an increased focus on primary schools to stop unauthorised absence. There were 54 million missed school days last year and the absence rate in primary schools increased to 4.7 per cent. The earlier a school can address poor attendance, the less likely it is to continue into secondary school.
“By using an MIS to monitor attendance, you can very quickly spot any children that are developing a pattern of absence. The latest developments in MIS technology also mean you can immediately see if any changes to attendance are affecting the pupil’s progress. This is invaluable as it allows teachers to spot where problems are developing and step in early before they have a long-term effect on a child’s performance.
“I have met many teams in local authorities and schools that are united by the positive impact their MIS has had on being able to intervene and improve behaviour.”
Wistaston Green Primary has seen a significant improvement in its attendance rate which it directly attributes to its MIS. Linda Davis, the school’s headteacher, explains: “Armed with accurate and easily accessible data, we are able to identify which groups show a pattern of absence. This enables us to develop strategies to support improvement.”
Other findings included:
- 64 per cent of local authority staff disclosed that more than half of all primary schools were using technology for the effective recording, analysing and reporting of pupil assessment.
- A significant number of respondents disclosed that technology was being used for the effective recording, analysing and reporting of special educational needs (SEN), with 56 per cent revealing that more than half of all primary schools were experiencing the benefits of using technology to monitor this group of pupils.
The survey was completed by 108 respondents at a Capita SIMS conference attended by IT and MIS school support teams from local authorities. SIMS is used by over 22,000 schools and more than 120 local authorities across the country. It allows schools and local authorities to enter details about numerous aspects of a child’s school life and then brings all this information together to help teachers and school leaders raise achievement.