In terms of ICT “Havering’s primary schools are leading the way for the rest of the country” – reports the NAHT Leadership Focus magazine

“The provision of ICT in the London Borough of Havering is starting to make tiny waves around the world.  It can be argued, with some justification, that Havering’s primary schools are leading the way for the rest of the country.  But some schools are taking it further and have been involved in collaboration with the Japanese Ministry of Education, which once would have been likened to ‘selling coals to Newcastle’.”  Joy Persaud examines the successes behind this in this month’s edition of the National Association of Head Teacher’s ‘Leadership Focus Magazine’…

Click to read the full article on pages 32-35 of Leadership Focus magazine

Japanese Ministry of Education enjoys more innovative ICT on its second day in Havering, London Borough

Japanese Delegates at The Brittons Academy

On Wednesday 3rd October 2012, a delegation from the Japanese Ministry of Education continued their visit organised by the Havering School Improvement Services’ ICT Team to explore the ways in which ICT is having a significant affect on whole-school improvement in Havering, London Borough.  

The morning was spent at The Brittons Academy, where delegates examined an array of technology in action including Apple Mac computers for music and film-making, Computer Aided Design and Computer Aided Making in Technology.  They also explored Brittons’ innovative approach to allowing students to bring their own devices to help them to learn, making use of the Academy’s site wide wireless network.  The delegates listened to the views of Principal Mr Robert Sheffield, Vice Principal Mr Richard Ayre and their colleagues and students about the successful ways in which they have engaged students in the development of the Academy’s ICT strategy.

In the afternoon, the delegation heard from the Havering School Improvement Services’ Principal Inspector Mr Grahame Smith and the Hsis ICT Team about ‘Whole School Improvement Through ICT in Havering and Beyond’.

Hsis Principal Inspector Grahame Smith shares the very successful Hsis approach to school improvement

Broadford Primary School Headteacher, Mr Malcolm Drakes then shared ways in which his school has transformed home:school engagement through the use of Twitter, FaceBook and a blog.

Broadford Primary Headteacher Malcolm Drakes explains the benefits of social networking tools to support home:school engagement

Delegates joined the Havering Primary ICT Network Leaders’ Meeting and ICT leaders from schools across Havering to experience how Havering schools come together with the Hsis ICT Team to share best practice.  Havering school and Japanese delegates were treated to a live demonstration on the use of a visualiser to support the teaching of geometry and a presentation by Dr Jun Takahashi of the University of Toyama on the subject of ICT provision in Japanese schools.  All delegates heard about the success of Switched on IC T from Mr Nigel Hooton of St.Peter’s Catholic Primary School, Romford.

St. Peter’s Catholic Primary School ICT Leader explains the approaches to Switched on ICT in his school to delegates from Havering and Japanese schools

The two days were full of sharing of ideas and information and continues the strong tradition of over five years of links between Havering schools, Havering School Improvement Services and the Japanese Ministry of Education and Japan Association for Educational Technology.  Long may it continue!

Japanese Ministry of Education visit Havering


On Tuesday 2nd October 2012, a delegation from the Japanese Ministry of Education consisting of representatives from 12 prefectures (local authorities) visited Scargill Junior School in the London Borough of Havering. The delegation were treated to a tour of the school where ICT was being used to support teaching and learning in every class. iPads, PSPs, visualisers, interactive whiteboards, iMovie, GarageBand, Flip cameras, the London Managed Learning Environment and more was being used confidently by pupils and staff in imaginative ways to impact on pupil outcomes. Headteacher Mrs Amanda Ireland and ICT Leader Mrs Karen Webley, ably assisted by the School’s Digital Leaders shared their thoughts with the delegation on the benefits of ICT. The delegation were very impressed at the array of ICT in action and were delighted to see the expressions of joy and interest on the pupils’ faces as they not only worked hard but had fun too.

On Wednesday, the delegation are off to The Brittons Academy to explore the Brittons’ approach to Bring Your Own Device…

Continue reading

Konnichiwa! Japanese Ministry of Education delegation choose to visit Havering to look at ICT once again

A high-level delegation of representatives of 12 different Japanese prefectures are coming to visit Havering.  Delegates led by Dr Jun Takahashi of the University of Toyama will visit Havering School Improvement Services, Scargill Junior School, Broadford Primary School and The Brittons Academy on the 2nd and 3rd October 2012 to examine the use of ICT to support teaching and learning.  This follows-on from the very successful visit of Ehime Prefecture to Havering in 2011.  This year the Japanese Ministry of Education has chosen to widen the group to include representatives from right across Japan.  The Havering School Improvement Services are honoured that Havering has been chosen for another visit.

Hsis ICT Adviser Dave Smith commented, “We look forward to welcoming our special guests – including their attendance and participation at the Havering Primary ICT Leaders’ Network Meeting on the 3rd October 2012, where colleagues from Japan will be sharing insights into ICT in Japanese Schools.  Our ongoing relationship with the Japanese Ministry of Education and Japan Association for Educational Technology has already borne fruit in terms of links between schools and the sharing of best practice.”

Engayne’s Digital Leaders show the way with ICT to delegates from the Japanese Association for Educational Technology on a visit to Havering LA

Mrs Stephanie Homewood and Engayne’s Digital Leaders share the Engayne Digital Leaders’ Blog with delegates from Japan

On Tuesday 10th July 2012 a delegation from the Japanese Ministry of Education and Japanese Association of Educational Technology visited Engayne Primary Teaching School, Havering to explore ICT within the School.

The delegation were met by Engayne’s Head Teacher Mrs Suzanne Ship, ICT Leader Mrs Stephanie Homewood and members of Engayne’s Digital Leaders’ group.  A tour of the school was provided to share some of the ways in which ICT is being used to support teaching and learning including:-

  • Kindles to support reluctant readers
  • Filming of puppet performances to support reading by pupils
  • Using GarageBand on Apple Macs to develop Olympic theme music
  • Creating 3D games about Europe
  • Learning directional language using programmable robots

Kindles in use to support reading

The Digital Leaders then explained that they help with the following tasks:-

  • Tracking ICT use via a record sheet to ensure equality of access for all pupils
  • Trial new software and equipment
  • Weekly laptop trolley checks
  • Fault reporting to ICT technicians
  • Emailing teachers about computer use
  • Training for pupils and staff
  • Attending staff meetings to help train staff and share ideas to improve ICT
  • Sharing good practice
  • Editing the Engayne ICT Blog
  • Attending Havering’s Collabor8 4 Change professional development event
  • Facilitating seminars at the BETT ICT Show
  • Welcoming visitors to the school

The Digital Leaders meet weekly with Mrs Homewood for a quick catch-up to explore tasks and attend after-school meetings to work on ICT-related tasks.  There is a formal application process for pupils to apply to help with ICT tasks.

The Digital Leaders commented that being involved in the initiative has allowed for the following outcomes… “It has helped to develop our confidence”… “I have skills that will be useful for the future”… “I’m more confident speaking to people”

There are plans afoot for Engayne Digital Leaders to present on the 2simple and Rising Stars’ stands at BETT 2013

The Japanese delegation were also interested in the School’s approaches to achieving the Naace ICT Mark twice, meeting with the School’s ICT Development Team including Mrs Jan Atkins, Mr Nick Clifford and Mr Stuart Easton during the visit.

Japanese delegates discuss the use of computer programming to support teaching and learning

For more information on setting-up a Digital Leaders’ group in your school visit

Dave Smith – ICT Adviser



Havering School Improvement Services





The Day the Japan Society visited Scargill Junior School

On Tuesday 26th June 2012 representatives of the Japan Society visited Scargill Junior School, Havering to talk to pupils about life in Japan.  This was part of a wider project linking Scargill Junior School with Ehime Prefecture, Japan through the Japan Society’s Open Classroom’s programme.

Scargill Junior’s ICT Leader Mrs Karen Webley is leading the initial links with Japan with the intention to work with the Havering School Improvement Services’ ICT Team to facilitate a larger network of Havering schools linking with Japanese schools.  The Japan Society then stayed on after-school to talk to the Havering International ICT Practice Group about opportunities to link with Japan through ICT.

An origami Samurai helmet as made by a pupil

Matt Devanny of the Japan Society challenges Scargill Junior pupils to explore fascinating facts about Japan