Edtech procurement is broken

1. Do we need to do as much of it as we do?

  • Would that investment be better made into people and services to support the design of creative digital pedagogy in an environment of technical restraint?

2. How does it align with contexts, values, purposes?

  • These are, or should be, the things that drive our design of learning and teaching. Who are our students, where are they, what do we think they need to learn and engage with? What values underpin our approach?
  • What did we think education was for? How would we translate this into functional requirements and score them?

3. How do we plug the ethics/standards gap?

  • Procurement of educational technologies needs to be aligned with ethical practices and clear standards.


Some further recommendations (not mine)

  • Education stakeholders need a standard to understand and choose edtech products with ease
  • There is a lack of benchmarks and standards across the edtech sector at national levels
  • Unregulated market increases the liability risks for schools
  • There is an overall need for a transparent communication across the board
  • Roles and responsibilities with regards to edtech products remain unclear
  • Schools do not necessarily have the expertise and they cannot always afford it
  • There is a need for all edtech companies to adhere to commonly agreed policies, terms and conditions within national contexts
  • If problems are generated due to technologies, technologies should partially be able to solve them, too
  • Edtech products should be licensed to operate in educational institutions

(Edtech procurement matters: It needs a coherent solution, clear governance and market standard, LSE Dept of Social Policy)

I wrote in 2018 about the changes that I could see coming in educational technology, the challenges that posed.

“We are making decisions about operational activities, that have far-reaching ethical and behavioural consequences, without an adequate framework in which to consider these concerns… …this is stuff that’s coming at us, and there are risks if we deal with it retroactively”

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