Newington College Case Study
I’m very grateful for the support I’ve received from BoB, especially the initial setup of the booklists. We push the digital texts through our LMS. Students use that integration to access their BoB library, without having to log in.
We asked Trent Driver, Deputy Head (Academic), about the school’s philosophy, “Our view is that digital resources should broaden and deepen the experience that students are having, irrespective of whether that’s a website, video or LMS. We would like to work with people who put education first and a quality experience at the forefront.”
“We wanted to move forward with a digital platform that would meet school standards and requirements, including long-term sustainability, so we’re not faced with the situation of retraining every couple of years. We’re also conscious that we like to do things our way. We have just under 1400 boys on site, and they’re not unlike kids in other schools; however, we run our educational programs in particular ways and we need to work with people who are sensitive to that and fit in with the ways we want to deliver education and best practise.”
We wanted to move forward with a digital platform that would meet school standards and requirements, including long-term sustainability, so we’re not faced with the situation of retraining every couple of years. We saw multiple ways Box of Books could support our goals and provide a richer experience for students consuming resources compared to other platforms.
Box of Books provided a blended purchasing model to Newington, allowing the school to purchase digital texts for all students, and for parents to elect to ‘top up’ that purchase with a physical textbook. Trent notes, “We saw multiple ways Box of Books could support our goals and provide a richer experience for students consuming resources compared to other platforms. We were impressed by the integration with our LMS and the way we could pair the school purchase of digital through BoB with the optional delivery of hardcopy for parents who want their sons to consume content that way.”
Jenny Diab, responsible to the Deputy Head for resource administration, worked with the BoB team to ensure a successful implementation. Jenny described the selection process, “We formed a group of eight staff from key departments – from heavy users to IT administrators who would be managing the program, to senior teams managing content.” Suppliers were invited to tender and went through an evaluation process, including a trial of the product
Trent described the benefits of the trial. “It’s really important for us to put ourselves in the position of a student, a staff member who might have varying digital literacy and be able to see how a platform works for them, supports them. We’re aware of the pressures on teachers, particularly time pressures, and the various systems they’re asked to use.” Jenny found value in seeing the platform capabilities firsthand “It’s the little things that made the difference in the end. The attention to detail was outstanding.
Jenny described the end-to-end supply from booklisting through to parent sales, licensing and physical delivery. “I’m very grateful for the support I’ve received from BoB, especially the initial setup of the booklists. We push the digital texts through our LMS. Students use that integration to access their BoB library, without having to log in.” Parents can choose to supplement the digital book with a physical text. “The delivery of the physical texts was seamless – I thought it would be a nightmare. Being the first year you learn by your mistakes and we haven’t had many and it’s been a big rollout.”
Trent noted that “when you think about the complexity of all the elements; the supply of hard copy and digital texts, and all the permutations that come up with just under 1400 boys and the different moving parts, it’s a complicated outcome. The ongoing communication with the BoB team has been pivotal in making the rollout very smooth.”
When asked about what factors are considered critical to successful adoption, Jenny identified staff training. “We have a very strong ICT model and push training throughout the year. Having an intuitive, user friendly interface is also critical. In terms of support for teacher professional development and product usability, BoB is clearly at the forefront of the digital market for textbooks.”
Trent’s advice to schools considering Box of Books is to “look very closely at their integrations with your other systems. A resources platform works best when it is well integrated. For those schools moving from traditional text delivery to ebooks, test the water for staff and community comfort around the move and have strategies in place to ensure staff and parents have an understanding of the benefits of the change.”