Globally, over 1 billion children enter classrooms to further advance their education, but with the pandemic creating a seismic shift across the sector with little to no warning. It has resulted in the sector embracing technology to enable continuity through the use of various platforms and resources.
The current e-learning solution acts as an enabler of innovation, along with providing heightened risks which need to be considered across the sector.
Some of the innovative aspects include:
Supporting a global youth population to embrace digital transformation earlier on, thus preparing them for the new way of working.
Providing access to a global virtual hub of peers from whom education providers and students alike can learn and share from.
Offering access to education for those who are or have been unable to have access to classrooms.
Providing a more cost-effective and accessible solution to education.
The challenges which the sector needs to consider include:
Enhancing and managing its IT infrastructure, along with having access to skilled resources
The need to purchase laptops and software in order for the virtual transition to continue
The need for education providers to be aware of cyber-bullying
Use of technology requires the collation of data and sensitive information, which is at risk of cyber-attacks
Managing online risks and the increased potential of ransomware
Reliance on internet access and speed which may vary depending on geographical positions
The need for providers and students to educate themselves on the use of such digital platforms
The education sector has overcome the challenge of the restrictive movement measures through the adoption of technology solutions; however, the protection and prevention of cyber-attacks is a crucial risk which needs to be effectively monitored and managed through the development of governance and risk mitigation strategies.
Inevitably industries have been disrupted and forced to transform, with the education sector not being immune. The sector has responded remarkably, displaying bold and resilient leadership in innovating their current operational models in less than a month, whilst enabling continuity.
Whilst the initial period of continuity is almost over, with providers and students now adapting to the new order, the next phase of growth for education providers will focus on restoration of its servicers once the movement orders are relaxed.
Academics and leaders should utilise this time to introspect and assess their models, given the sector will become much more globalised and multi-dimensional in structure. It is time to rethink the tech transformation plan for schools, who will become much more digital and connected, enabling its students to access a wider pool of resources and knowledge. The challenge for the sector is to both navigate the tech landscape, whilst enabling virtual solutions for its students in a safe and secure manner.
Take a look at the National Cyber Security Centre’s practical tips for everyone working in education!View here
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