Off Islands Pupils Could Get Lessons By Videoconference

New Five Islands School, due to open in September

School pupils on the off islands could be taught from St Mary’s at times from next year.

The new Five Islands School will be one of the first educational establishments in the UK to adopt a state-of-the-art videoconferencing system.

Headteacher Bryce Wilby told us the technology, developed by Microsoft and partners Logitec, is much more advanced than regular webcams or Skype.

It will allow individuals or groups of pupils to see each other on a large screen and to participate in lessons. The system could even be expanded to allow specialists teachers from the mainland, such as music tutors, to interact with pupils at any or all of the school bases.

The technology will also allow recording of online lessons, staff or governors’ discussions for later playback.

Bryce thinks it could even be expanded for community use, such as access for business calls and consulting with medical experts on the mainland.

It’s hoped the new system will be up and running in time for the start of the new school year in September.