Queen Anne’s School has been awarded the prestigious Microsoft Showcase School Award acknowledging the extensive digital teaching and learning that has become integral to the school’s approach. The girls’ school, based in Caversham in Reading, became one of just 24 schools in the UK and 460 worldwide to be recognised by the international tech giants as leaders in digital learning.
Head of E-Learning Thomas Lange is delighted with the digital journey at Queen Anne’s: “The willingness of the staff and students to constantly adapt and improve has driven the success of our digital innovation. We look forward to sharing our experiences with the wider community and continuing to improve teaching and learning with 21st century skills.”
Over the last four years Queen Anne’s has led the way in its innovative approach to teaching teenagers with 10 teachers now having achieved Microsoft Expert Status, 30 at Microsoft Innovative Educator level and more in the pipeline. The students also take ownership of their e-learning development with seven Student Digital Gurus providing leadership across the years.
Headmistress Julia Harrington praised the girls and staff for their work saying: “The school has to demonstrate leadership in four key areas; teaching and learning that is fit for purpose in the 21st Century, innovation, leadership and inclusion. This award will enhance the development of life-long skills including computational thinking, critical analysis and problem solving.”
The girls celebrated the achievement by taking part in a Microsoft Skypeathon with Vice President of Microsoft Anthony Salcito who connected with the girls via live video call in the school’s newly built multi-purpose recital hall. Mr Salcito talked with the girls about working at Microsoft, the future of technology in education and the changes technology can bring to the wider world. Jennifer King, Microsoft UK Lead for Education, also visited the school in person to present a plaque marking the achievement.
However, the celebrations don’t stop there and there are plans over the coming weeks to continue the Skypeathon with some of the school’s partner organisations including digital ‘meetings’ with Red Earth Education in Uganda, UN representatives in Bonn and GotheGym School in Dusseldorf.