Knetic Education

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Exciting news - From March this year The Learning Technologies Innovation Team will become Knetic Education

Mark and Jane are highly experienced teachers who over the years have gained accreditation in a number of areas. Because of this we are able to offer you the highest quality support. We work on a cost recovery model so the team is only able to exist thanks to the subscription fees paid by Sunderland schools. We are proud to say that this means that the service is truly owned by you. Whether you buy in or nit we can work with you but naturally our subscribers get the gold standard from us. If you want more information on the benefits of subscribing take a look the the article below.

Team Accreditations Include


adobeeducationtrainer As Adobe Education Trainers we deliver training in Adobe products like Photoshop & Premiere to students and teachers.

get  We can give advice to schools who are thinking of going for their ICT mark

Lead-Practitioner-FINAL We are Lead Practitioners with the Specialist Schools and Academies Trust -
We also deliver training around the country for the Teacher Effectiveness Enhancement Programme. 

RTC As an RTC we deliver courses that help teachers to make the best use of Apple technologies for learning


As CEOP Ambassdors we are traiined to deliver CEOP accredited e-safety training



AET Schools who have bough devices qualify for free training through the Apple Education Trainer programme. You can also buy in Apple developed courses through this programme for your school.


 Given that this is a great period of change for schools, and there are real challenges faced in moving toward the Computing Curriculum, School Improvement have agreed to make a salary contribution too. We are both delighted to have this opportunity to work with School Improvement to develop the service further.

Things are really looking up for the team now, our ICT coordinators update meetings are becoming more and more popular, we have a number of schools and making use of our ICT audits, support for schools introducing mobile devices has really taken off and schools continue to make use of our e-Safety advice and training.

This is not the end of the story however, like any service we rely on you buying in for us to be able to continue. From looking at how we have operated over the past year it seems that schools are most likely to book us a month or two before they want to use us. As you can imagine this makes it difficult for us to demonstrate that we have enough take-up of the service long term. If you think that your school will want to make use of our services in the coming months please get in touch. We would also like to offer all schools a free needs assessment meeting where we will come out and spend an hour or so discussing your vision for using learning technologies and how we can support you to achieve this. Please contact us if you feel you would benefit from a discussion.

We have big plans to grow the service moving forward in the light of feedback we have had from schools. we are currently:-


  • Working with ICT leads to produce a new computing curriculum for Sunderland Schools
  • Establishing our base at Monkwearmouth School to allow us to have classes in and run CPD courses
  • Re-launching our Apple Regional Training Centre with training specific to schools who want to use Apple technologies in the classroom
  • Establishing a mobile device user group to support schools making use of iPads and other devices


What Happened to Sunderland City Learning Centres?


ICT brochureIn March of 2013 the City Learning Centre at St Roberts closed and the functions of the CLC became part of the services offered by the new Learning Technologies Innovation Team.

As a CLC team we have had many happy years working with teachers and learners from the schools in Sunderland and we look forward to continuing to do so as the new Learning Technologies Innovation Team.

The team will be responsible for giving advice and support to schools wanting to embed technology in teaching and learning. We have been heavily involved in writing the new ICT services to schools document - Click the image if you want to read it.

This will include:

  • Working with headteachers and senior managers to help shape schools vision for integrating learning technologies
  • Delivering exemplar lessons to learners, both in school and at a specialist venue
  • Providing CPD for teachers, both in school and at a specialist venue
  • Providing a service where schools could access a supported loan of equipment for a specific project.
  • Facilitating networking meetings for subject specialists
  • Keeping schools up to date with developments via the Learning Hub
  • Facilitate sharing of information and good practice via the learning hub.
  • Facilitating collaborative projects between schools

The direct school's services - those where we work with individual schools are available by buying (day) blocks of service credits. These can be used by the school in whichever way they choose. Examples may include, e-safety training, advice on iPad deployment or teaching exemplar lessons in schools. There are also indirect services that can exist as a function of maintaining funding for the team.

These services include facilitating subject leader networks, coordinating collaborative projects, delivering CPD and keeping schools up to date via the Learning Hub.


In response to a lot of questions we have had - and to help you match our new services to the old ones we've put together a FAQ


faqThe CLCs offered a comprehensive CPD programme - where will I find courses ran by the new Learning Technologies Innovation Team?

All of our courses are now advertised via the CPD booking system here

We used to really love coming to the CLC to do activities with our learners - where can we go now?

The CLC buildings have gone but the team responsible for delivering those activities, and the kit to support them, are with the Learning Technologies Innovation Team. We will be initially operating from the ICT unit at Moorside and are able to come into schools to work with your learners. We are in the process of looking for a new venue to work from that will allow you to come and visit us. We are hoping that our new venue will be equipped to deliver the activities in the spirit of the CLCs

We could always count on the CLC team for impartial advice about creative use of technologies for learning - can we still do that?

The Learning Technologies Innovation Team offer exactly the same impartial advice as we always did and we strive to keep up to date with the latest technologies. We want schools to be in the best place to make informed decisions about technologies which will give you the best possible exeriences for your learners. Since we don't sell a product we are able to be truly impartial. Our services are driven by your needs  and we regularly consult with schools to ensure that the services are exactly what you want. Other advice we can offer includes long-term ICT visioning, procurement advice and general guidance on using ICT to enhance learning.

Many schools have benefitted from our end to end approach.

Initial Advice & Visioning - Support With Procurement - Installation and Configuration - Training For Teaching & Learning - Ongoing Support & Guidance

Just to give you an idea recent requests for advice and support have included:-

  • How can we safely use of social networks to improve communication with parents?
  • How can we use mobile devices to streamline the process of creating learning journals in early years?
  • How do I get my year sixes to be more safe online?
  • What are the issues we might face when deploying mobile devices?

There is no charge for an initial meeting to discuss your needs. All we ask is that you show a commitment to the service by purchasing additional service credits.

I relied on the CLCs to borrow equipment to use in the classroom can I still get access to it?

We are continuing to offer a equipment loan service. In order to access the service the requirement is that you have bought at least one day service credit.
This will entitle you to two unsupported loans of equipment - or better still we can bring out the equipment and work with you for a day. This way you get the equipment and also have access to a member of the team to support it's use in the classroom. Want to run a film-making project with the class? We'll bring out the kit and teach you and your class the skills to get you started and leave it with you for the project. All equipment loans are subject to a full replacement for breakages agreement.

The CLC helped us create our school website. What happens now?

The ICT unit will continue to host websites for a small annual charge and the members of the Learning Technologies Innovation Team will work with you to ensure that staff have the necessary skills to keep it up to date. We will even work with you to ensure your site really works for the school by giving advice and training on how you can use it to extend learning beyond the classroom. For more detailed advice on your school website click here

I was always able to call the CLC for advice how do I get in touch with the Learning Technologies Innovation Team

The good news is that we are taking the phone number with us to our new venue and will continue to have the same email addresses. As we manage the Learning Hub, you can get in touch through the contact us link too.

So what happened to the CLCs and all of their equipment? 

Direct Government funding for the CLC initiative came to an end in 2010 when the coalition government came into office and BECTA were shut down.

After having various unsuccessful discussions with schools about how to fund the centres, the decision was made to close Southmoor and transfer ownership of the CLC building to the school for use as a performing arts block. The equipment was moved to St Roberts CLC to facilitate it becoming a Teachers' CPD centre, and to the Futures Centres at Harraton and Pallion to allow them to continue some of the CLC like activities with learners. Surplus equipment was offered to schools. The equipment from St Roberts is being used to continue to provide a central service to all schools in the City.

Didn't you have a lot of macs and do Apple training what is going to happen with that?

RTC logoThe CLCs have always been an Apple Regional Training Centre and we continue to have that status. We have appropriate hardware so that we can continue to support schools who want to make use of Apple technologies in the classroom. In fact, a high percentage of our time recently has centred around supporting schools who want to introduce iPads. We will be advertising courses to help people to see the potential of using Apple technologies in the classroom.

The CLC used to deliver Teep training what will happen to that?

Members of the Learning Technologies Innovation Team are committed to working closely with the SSAT to deliver Teep training. As highly experienced trainers, we have been all over the country delivering Teep to schools. We also use the Teep methodologies in our own teaching. If you want to know more about how Teep training could help develop teaching and learning in your school contact a member of the team of visit the Teep website.

How do the service credits work?

We are aiming for a cost recovery model. The existence of the team relies on us raising enough funding through service credits to maintain us. Service credits can be bought in blocks of days and used however you want to use them. For example you could buy two days, use half a day for an e-safety twilight, half a day to work with your curriculum lead to help you put together an ICT development plan for the school and a day for us to come out and deliver a control activity with your learners. The system is entirely flexible and the cost of a day's service credit is £300. Buying one day's credit also gives you access to our equipment loan scheme.

How do I get in touch?

Wer have maintained the St Roberts CLC phone number 0191 561 3490 and our email addresses. You can contact us via the contact us link on the Hub.


ICT has now become Computing

The DFE have just published the response to the consultation on changes to the subject of ICT. The report, published on the 3rd of May, confirms that the subject will be changing its name as well as confirming the temporary disapplication of the National Curriculum.

It is envisaged that the new subject title will reflect appropriately the content included in the revised programmes of study for the subject which are more ambitious and rigorous than the existing (and now disapplied) programmes of study for ICT, and place much greater emphasis on teaching the principles of computational thinking and practical programming skills. Changing the subject name to computing is in keeping with the views of the largest group of respondents to the consultation and of key organisations such as the Royal Society, BCS – The Chartered Institute for IT, Microsoft and the Royal Academy of Engineering. 

Read more: ICT has now become Computing

Is your website working for your school?

Website Example

A good website can work wonders for your school. We want all schools to have a site that not only provides statutory information to parents and the local community but also provides a vibrant showcase for life in the school.

For many years we have been looking for a website solution that allows schools to design a site that meets their individual needs.

We settled on an open source content management system - the same one that powers the Learning Hub - because of it's rich features and capability to be customised. What are you currently using for your site? Could you be due an update?

Ask yourself if your site does the following:-

  • Includes DFE Key information
  • Is flexible enough for your to decide exactly what features you want
  • Can be updated from anywhere with web access without the need for specific skills or complicated software
  • Has a calendar to help people keep track of what is happening
  • Has a blogging area where each class can learn together and showcase what they are doing
  • Has a photo gallery with slide-show that gives a real window into life in the school
  • Can be updated when you are out and about from any device - How about from Derwent Hill using your phone?
  • Is capable of integrating with social sites like Facebook, Youtube and Twitter
  • Your learners can write content but it doesn't go live until it has been checked
  • Every member of the school community can take a role in updating and maintaining the site
  • The look and feel of the site can be changed in an instant
  • Key documents that you send out can be delivered via the site
  • Hides your school email address away so you aren't plagued with SPAM
  • Provides a map so people can find you easily
  • Articles can be added by anyone in the same time it would take you to write an e-mail

If it doesn't then you may want to consider having a site through us.

We appreciate that every school is different and you all have unique needs. We will work closely with you to plan and develop the site, design your template, train key staff and when you are ready help you to launch the site to the outside world. We can even help you get teachers and learners on-board to develop content too.

We already have a number of schools who are using the system like St Anne's Primary and Seaburn Dene Primary both sites are really good examples of how schools have used the system to make their sites a vibrant showcase for the school community.

There are other benefits too one school office manager commented:

"Since having the site calls to the office for information have been seriously reduced. Although it took me time to put the information up the site is now saving me time."

For an informal demonstration of the website features contact the ICT unit and book a meeting with a member of our Learning Technologies Innovation Team.


New Service Catalogue Launched

ICT brochureWe are excited to announce that the new ICT services catalogue for schools has been launched. The new services have been developed as a result of extensive consultation with schools about what they need.

The catalogue Sunderland ICT Services to Schools sets out our plan to deliver a whole new range of services alongside the familiar services you have come to rely on. New services include the ability to buy additional service credits for the services of our new Learning Technolologies Inoovation Team. These can be bought as blocks of days and used for the team to run CPD sessions for staff, lessons with learners or work with leadership and management to develop the strategic vision for using technology for learning in your school.

Some schools have already begun to make use of the Learning Technologies Innovation Team. Recently we have been involved in:-


  • Providing advice and support for schools looking to make use of Facebook and Twitter to improve parental engagement
  • End to end support for the deployment of iPads. From initial advice, through support with procurement, to CPD for staff and examples of classroom use.
  • Delivering e-safety training to staff and students
  • Supporting schools in producing a vision for using technology for teaching and learning
  • Support with applying for the ICT Mark
  • Design development and planning of school websites
  • Providing advice on imporving wireless connectivity

The team are also responsible for coordinating the Primary and Secondary ICT groups and providing information to schools via the Learning Hub.

We will shortly be contacting you with a survey. We are trying to find out whether anyone has any planned spend for subscription services (Education City, Espresso etc.) or hardware (PCs, iPads, wireless etc.) the aim is to look at combining purchasing to get a better deal for Sunderland schools.

We hope you will set aside time to read the catalogue and consider which services you feel would be of value to your school. Pricing for services is contained in the LA SLA document.

Get a copy of Microsoft Office for home use for £10

Boxshot_-_Office_Professional_2010The Council has purchased a licence for Microsoft Office that extends to home use by employees. If you work for Sunderland council and have a sunderland schools email address you are entitled to a copy at a reduced rate of £10
The copy of office you buy can only be installed on your home computer.
To sign up for the scheme you need to send an email from your work account to Phoenix software (the address is in the attached document) expressing your interest They will send you a special code and a link to purchase and download the software.

Further information about the scheme can be viewed here