Mansfield Woodhouse: Every student to get an iPad at Manor Academy

A pioneering Mansfield Woodhouse secondary school is to become the first in the county to issue an iPad to every student and staff member.

Manor Academy has ordered 1,200 of the devices for interactive use in lessons and at home.

All Manor Academy students will use iPads in lessons when the 2014-15 term starts.

All Manor Academy students will use iPads in lessons when the 2014-15 term starts.

The scheme will cost an estimated £150,000 a year, with the school asking parents to contribute £10 towards the cost of insurance.

Donna Trusler, who will take over as headteacher from Jonathan Hickman at the start of the new term, believes it will bring learning into the 21st century and ultimately save money.

“We want a system where everyone is included and we’ve been saving money for this for a couple of years now,” she said.

“It’s called ‘flip learning’ and is a relatively new way of doing things, but it’s had great results in the US and China.

“Traditionally 90 per cent of lesson time has been taken up by the teacher talking and only 10 per cent students applying their knowledge. Using iPads flips that over, with the teacher only speaking 10 per cent of the time.

“The teacher will no longer stand at the front of the room like in a traditional classroom. Students will sit in circular groups.

“The classroom has not really changed from Victorian times to 2014, yet the world has moved on. We need students to learn in a way that’s conducive to modern life and we believe this does that.”

Teachers have already been issued with their iPads so they can familiarise themselves with them during the summer break, and will also receive ongoing training.

Students will get their own devices in the first week of October, shortly after schooling resumes.

Parents will be encouraged to get involved in their child’s learning and free computer literacy courses are being offered to them.

Spare iPads will be kept on site at the Academy for cases where students lose or damage their machine.

Ms Trusler added: “Rather than needing to buy books, that can date in six months, we can now use up-to-date ebooks.

“Teachers can create their own e-books and videos and students can look back again at their own speed if they miss something.

“They can also contact teachers more easily if they are having a problem with their homework, and the dashboard also keeps track of their attendance and their progress.

“I think it will give our students an advantage and a head start when they get out into the real world.”