25 March 2022

Meldrum Academy Scoops Top European Award for Digital Education Practices

Meldrum Academy, in Oldmeldrum, Aberdeenshire, has become one of the first schools in Europe to achieve European Digital Schools Awards status.

Launched last year, the Digital Schools Awards European programme was created to encourage and recognise innovation, collaboration and skills development in digital technology amongst schools. It is backed by the European Commissions’ Erasmus+ programme, national government bodies including Education Scotland and leading technology companies led by HP.

Only 90 secondary schools across Europe were selected to take part in the initiative which is being piloted in five countries namely Ireland, Lithuania, Scotland, Serbia and Slovenia and it is the first of its kind to be available across the continent. 

Meldrum Academy is the first school in Scotland to receive the award which recognises and celebrates best practice in digital education.

To achieve European Digital Schools status, the Aberdeenshire based school had to demonstrate strong leadership in digital education and provide sufficient access to resources and infrastructure. Their school culture, professional development strategies and teaching practices were also assessed as part of the submission.

The European Digital Schools Awards requires schools to use the European Commission’s SELFIE self-reflection tool to assess their digital learning and teaching practices and identified areas where improvements can be made.  As part of the programme, teachers were given access to expert support and resources to help them develop their digital curriculum and ensure pupils are given the skills they need to navigate the modern world.

The European Digital Schools Awards programme also intends to open up dialogue across borders and create a growing community of digitally competent schools, where teachers can share learnings from different education systems.

Ian Jackson, Head Teacher of Meldrum Academy said: “To be one of the first schools in Europe to receive this award is a fantastic achievement, which our whole school community is very proud of.

“Both our teachers and pupils have worked incredibly hard, and in particular during the pandemic, to develop and embed digital learning into the curriculum. Ensuring that our pupils have access to the equipment, resources and support to develop their skills and literacy in this area has been top of our agenda for some time, but the European Digital Schools Award programme has given us the momentum to drive forward new strategies.

“The European Digital Schools Award has opened up channels for collaboration, both within our
school community and with counterparts in other countries, which will allow us to build close working relationships with educational professionals across Europe.”

“We are very proud of the achievements of our school, and we will continue to share best practices with others across the continent.”

Anna Doody from Digital Schools Awards said: “We know that schools across Europe have taken great strides in recent years to integrate digital practices into their teaching, and one of the most important and valuable aspects of the European Digital Schools Awards is the ability to network with counterparts in other parts of the world.

“By connecting schools, we hope to bring attention to innovations happening elsewhere in the continent and encourage collaboration by opening more channels for knowledge sharing across borders.”

To find out more, schools are encouraged to visit awards4selfie.eu