This year's SETT show

This year's SETT show is bigger than ever with more than 3,000 visitors expected. For the first time, the Scottish Education and Teaching with Technology conference is extended to cover early years and further education. The seminar programme has been extended accordingly, taking the number of seminars to more than 100, and there are 95 exhibitors at the accompanying exhibition.

Two government ministers will attend the show this year. Deputy Education Minister Nicol Stephen will open it, while Education Minister Cathy Jamieson will make a special visit to the Masterclass conference(see page III).

Keynote speakers include Alan November, an American specialist on educational technology who entertained hundreds last year with his inspirational ideas for using ICT with the young, and UK guru Stephen Heppell, director of the Ultralab centre at East Anglia Polytechnic University.

So, there will be lessons from the United States and England. Meanwhile, Scotland's own strategy moves steadily ahead. It's not clear yet what will happen now that the New Opportunities Fund for ICT training has come to an end; a lot remains to be decided in the wake of the post-McCrone agreement on continuing professional development. The big news this year is the launch of Masterclass, which will see 600 key figures trained to support teachers in their classrooms and advise them online.

Online communities are something to watch. Heads Together, the new community for headteachers (see page VII) will also be launched at the conference. As Scotland's national schools intranet gears up for 2004, the Executive is looking to these online communities to serve as models for other areas of interest.

As the Executive forges ahead with its plans for a digital Scotland, past investment is already paying off. From the toddlers at Scaraway Nursery in Glasgow's east end to young film-makers at Kilgraston in Perth, the buzz word now is digital.

Gillian Macdonald, editor of SETT 2002 and assistant editor, TES Scotland

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