The SMATA School Plan
One of the things that drove the development of SMATA was a belief in the power of information, especially information that came from observation: small data.
But there are ethical considerations. Data should be used for the benefit of the person who it was collected about. In other words, if you capture observation data, you are ethically obliged to act on what it shows you about the learner.
This is why there is no sharing function built into the SMATA app. The observation data it collects is, first and foremost, for the teacher and the student. As much as possible it needs to stay in that cycle between those two enactors of learning for the data to have an impact.
Big data is great for driving strategy
Leaders don’t need the same information as teachers. To help them guide school strategy, it’s trends that are important, and so this is what the web portal gives them: big data, derived from small data.
Observation data from teachers is anonymised and crunched into learning analytics. See where the learning is rich, where it’s variable, where there is little growth, and where there has been the highest growth. Use this information to support the professional growth of the staff and set strategic directions.
The web portal also allows the uploading of student rolls so setting up the app is easier. And coming soon is the ability to preset classrooms and personalise learning areas within the portal, as well as filter the analytics so that the big data analysis can become more finely grained.
And sharing? Yes, it’s coming. We are working on a teacher section of the portal so they can access all their observation data and easily share it with home and turn it into reports or learning stories. Watch this space.