School 4.0 meets the growing demand for curricular frameworks for continuous professional development of teachers in the digital age. The project responds to the challenges of sustainable investment in education and training, aligning education and training activities on different levels with necessary technical implementation processes. Bridging the gap between teaching competences and school infrastructure, it will also design and publish pedagogically informed implementation models that will significantly contribute to sustainable investment, performance and efficiency in school infrastructure across Europe.
The main objective of School 4.0 is to enhance and to improve teacher education curricula in all stages of professional development.
The project focuses on teacher training curricula that aim at (a) developing the competences of teachers in teaching digital literacy / media pedagogy and at (b) developing digital competences of teachers for effective use of ICT in teaching. The second priority of School 4.0 is to provide stakeholders in school infrastructure across Europe with a solid basis of decision-making when investing in technology and implementing ICT solutions in schools. Innovation in learning can succeed only when professional teachers can use functioning and functional ICT infrastructure in schools. At the same time, rapid changes in technology challenge decision-makers to understand the success factors for effective and sustainable investments.
Governing bodies throughout the EU have issued strategies for the enhancement of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) infrastructure in schools and prepared large-volume investment packages. Several studies have been conducted on different implementation models of ICT in schools. School 4.0 links up the two interrelated dimensions of teacher education and school infrastructure in a transnational strategic partnership of European partners.
Establishing a transnational cooperation of decision-makers in teacher education and school infrastructure for the exchange of good practices for sustainable development of ICT competences in school education across Europe, School 4.0 brings together complementary partners from Germany, UK and Austria: (1) two institutions of higher education involved in initial teacher education, (2) two local authorities responsible for school infrastructure and for continuous professional development of teachers, (3) two alliances for the promotion of ICT in education, as well as (4) three schools.
Participants in learning and training activities are key players in teacher education and training in the field of ICT based learning. Participants from universities or teacher education colleges are key players in the development of curricula for initial teacher education study programs as well as vocational education training for teachers. The participating school authorities play a key role in the operational implementation of project results.
School 4.0 develops an integrated curricular concept for implementation of digital competences in continuous teacher education.
Drawing upon the maxim “pedagogy first”, the project also develops models for sustainable and effective implementation of ICT school infrastructure in different educational contexts, translating existing strategic frameworks onto the operational level. It results in the establishment of a transnational think tank of decision-makers in teacher education and in school infrastructure that will continue to impact on education policies across Europe.
Long-term objectives of the cooperation are (1) contributing to continual development of teachers’ digital competences and (2) contributing to sustainable investment, performance and efficiency of customized ICT solutions in schools across Europe.