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Self-Paced Staff Development with Workspace Skills

Canopy Education and St Patrick’s Academy, Dungannon partnered to support staff digital skills development to enhance teaching and learning. The goal is to have all staff demonstrate Google Workspace competency through the use of Workspace Skills.

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St Patrick Academy, Dungannon in Northern Ireland works hard to be a centre of excellence for the 21st century & aims to be a modern school with traditional values. Strategic Leader of Digital Learning & Communication Google Certified Trainer and Coach, Danielle Mckernan looks after the technological skills of the school’s 90 staff members.

The Challenge

In the fall of 2021 Danielle noticed the surveys used to help guide digital skills professional development often left blind spots; staff underestimated themselves or only had limited knowledge of familiar tools. Danielle wanted to approach PD in a different way, using Workspace Skills, a series of interactive tutorials, to teach staff how to use Google Workspace tools efficiently & effectively.

The Solution

All staff completed the tutorials both independently and in focused staff meetings creating a shared experience. Danielle was able to look at the skills data for everyone, break it down into departments & develop targets to provide specific support to those who needed it. A support model developed as those with more experience & skill were able to provide support to colleagues.

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The Results

There has been an increase in confidence and use of Google tools across staff; staff are keen to take the GCE Level 1 exam as a result. Danielle noted that some staff loved the competitive element, while others worked quietly on achieving badges. Individual and departmental celebrations have helped develop the school community. Overall there
has been an increase in staff independence with technology.

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