Kirkby High School students get hands at the ready for high-tech voting system WITH PICS

Published on: Tuesday, 24-June-2014

Knowsley based Kirkby High School is introducing a novel electronic voting system to ensure every students has a say on important school issues.

The hand held devices will be used by students in assemblies and classrooms enabling them to answer group questions quickly and in confidence. The lightweight device can be used to cast a vote based on a series of questions listed on a slide presentation, with each pupil clicking a button corresponding to their response.

Kirkby High School headteacher Bill Leyland said the technology brings a new dimension to teaching and learning, helping to stimulate group activities and engage each individual student.

“We are very pleased to be introducing this new technology which is a useful and fun teaching aid,” said Mr Leyland. “The tool can be used in many different scenarios and presents a unique way of sharing information. They can be used to increase student engagement and knowledge retention by driving interacting with the subject matter.

“In the school environment it is also a useful device to encourage the opinions of those students who prefer to stay quiet in groups. It is important that pupils learn how to participate and stay engaged in group discussions.

“It is also fundamental to our ethos at Kirkby High School that we treat each and every pupil as an individual. We greatly value the opinions of all our students. With the simple tap of a button we can gain a general consensus on key school matters which affect students, from school lunches to extra-curricular activities.”

Kirkby High School recently recorded the best GCSE results in its history. The number of pupils posting five or more GCSE grades A*-C including English and maths rose by more than 8pc to 43.3pc.

The school is currently operating an “open door” policy to all prospective students and parents to showcase its offering and make introductions to teachers.

The college recently announced a six-figure investment in science, humanities and IT facilities. Mr Leyland said the voting system was the latest move in his drive to make widescale improvements since taking up the post in January 2013.

He said the new voting device presented another key benefit allowing students to answer questions anonymously.

“Research into the use of these voting systems within schools has found that many pupils like the discretion which comes with the technology. They can essentially make their own private decisions, without pressure from others. It is essential that our students understand the importance of being able to communicate their own opinions. The technology can also play a vital role in helping our teachers free up more time to devote to students and help their development.”

For more information or to arrange a site visit at Kirkby High School visit the website www.kirkbyhighschool.net or phone 0151 4778710.