The schools will represent Australia in the top tier of the Microsoft’s Partners in Learning Schools Program as Mentor Schools – two of only 32 in the world.
They were selected to join the program as they are viewed as leaders in technological innovation in the classroom and their education models have been replicated in other schools.
Both schools will now be responsible for mentoring five Pathfinder Schools over a 12 to 24 month period. They will receive technology expertise from Microsoft, development tools and educational models, and online and in-person training.
East Butler Primary School deputy principal Denise Jeffs said staff prided themselves on giving students the best opportunities for the future and providing them with valuable digital skills needed to succeed.
“To be recognised by Microsoft as a Mentor School and as a global leader in using technology in education is a fantastic achievement for us,” she said.
“The program gives us the opportunity to encourage other schools to implement and use technology in a meaningful way in the classroom, and learn from other Pathfinder and Mentor Schools around the world.”
The school implemented a student-run monthly broadcast news report that sits on the intranet for students, teachers and parents to access.
Focus on technology in drama studies is also key with students having access to green screens and movie-making software to express their ideas in a paperless learning system.
Waggrakine Primary School has placed emphasis on engaged learning beyond the classroom.
Students take learning to new places with new people allowing them to develop skills they need in the digital world. They are also involved in planning and direction of their learning at school.
Principal Elisabeth Turner said technology in the classroom was critical in helping to support opportunities for teaching students.
“Being recognised in this way and taking our status on the Partners in Learning Innovative Schools Program to the next level is a fantastic accomplishment for our school,” she said.
Photos from top: East Butler Primary School students using the Kodu Game Lab; working with notebooks in class; and making green screens.