Scone Grammar School Case Study

Scone Grammar School is a leading coeducational, independent, P–12, Anglican school providing a Christian learning community which recognises the uniqueness of every student and delivers outstanding education in the Upper Hunter Valley in Nsw, Australia.

Challenge

Technology is a powerful tool that can support and transform education in many ways, with a new mission to enable modern education, Scone Grammar School engaged CrossPoint to help design, deploy and implement an E-Learning and communication strategy that would lead to greater collaboration, improved engagement, inspiring education and offer staff and secondary students the ability to access files and connections instantly from anywhere.

Solutions

After a comprehensive audit of the existing IT environment, undertaken by Paul Carnemolla – Education Practice Lead at CrossPoint and ICT advisors to a number of schools across Australia, CrossPoint developed an ICT strategy for the school including the implementation of an innovative E-Learning strategy based on the deployment of Microsoft Office 365 and Teams. Supported by an ongoing focus on improving teaching practice, Scone Grammar students and staff can now collaborate online from virtually anywhere through Microsoft Teams for every class from Years 4 to 12, online assignments and OneNote class notebook enables students to submit work at any time and from any place and to receive feedback from their teacher in real time. Lessons on OneNote allow students to work at their own pace and provide teachers visibility to track students’ progress anywhere, anytime and align their direction when required. If teachers or students are away, they have the ability to catch up on work outside of the classroom as all learning content is accessible on any device 24/7. Anecdotally the implementation of Microsoft Teams is the most advanced implementation of Office 365 across any school in Australia.

Students and teachers regularly utilise Microsoft Teams to participate in video learning, the Teams application empowers teachers to unlock creativity, promote teamwork and provide a simple and safe experience for students and teachers. The class teams are automatically updated when a new student arrives, leaves or changes class through an automated synchronisation process with the school information system.

Dan Bowen, Technology Strategist (Education) at Microsoft has enjoyed pushing the boundaries with Scone Grammar School and their IT Consultant, Paul Carnemolla from CrossPoint Technology Solutions.“It has been great to work with the leadership team at Scone Grammar School (SGS) to push boundaries around digital transformation. We’ve seen it positively impact the students, staff and the community. SGS have innovated and been progressive in their use of Microsoft Technologies to empower students and staff to achieve more and get ready for the world of work and the future.”

In addition to the implementation of Microsoft Office 365, Scone Grammar School replaced all on premise network storage with OneDrive and SharePoint, leading to greater accessibility and security due to files being stored on Microsoft’s Office 365 cloud-based students. Microsoft Intune was used to implement secure, enterprise-grade Wi-Fi authentication using certificates instead of usernames and passwords resulting in password changes not affecting Wi-Fi connectivity. The addition of a self-service portal from Intune also allows administrators and users to remote wipe devices if they are lost or stolen. Paul Carnemolla, a qualified teacher of science and senior physics and a former President of the Australian Science Teachers Association shares insight into the benefits of implementation “Students and teachers are able to access the same content on school-owned computers and iPads as well as personal devices including mobile phones. Internal email has been gradually replaced with Microsoft Teams chat allowing teachers and staff to easily connect in real-time”.

Outcomes

Scone Grammar School now has an innovative platform for inclusive and collaborative learning through a transformational eLearning strategy. Microsoft Teams is now their prime means of internal communication and collaboration amongst staff with SharePoint providing an accessible and secure means of file access.

Scone Grammar School now utilise sophisticated infrastructure with a stable and reliable network offering students and staff a more secure and supportive learning experience. Paul Smart, Principal, Scone Grammar commented “It’s accessible and it’s providing students with a way of connecting that is easy and more aligned with the environment they’re likely to be a part of beyond their school life. This approach to utilise technology and innovative learning helps us to engage, inspire and stretch our students to be the best learners they can be”

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