St Peter’s Girls’ School Case Study
Ease of access is equally important. All our resources are now available through Box of Books, and this has made such a significant difference as all connections to educational content and platforms are housed in the one place.
Lisa Hollis, Head of Library and Information Services approached the transition to identify a new vendor systematically. She explained: “The first steps were to evaluate what digital resources we were currently using, down to the specific chapter being used in classrooms. We then examined options with publishers to see if they could provide similar content that would marry up with what our teachers wanted to use in their curriculums. We trialled the resources and explored different resource delivery platforms, including Box of Books. It was quite a lengthy process and involved representatives from all the options coming in to talk to the Teaching and Learning Committee and Digital Technology administrators. I wrote summaries of the pros and cons and asked for teacher feedback seeking consensus on the options provided. This led to the development of our current model.”
The decision was made that Box of Books was easiest when accessing and navigating content plus offered the most integrated option including instant links to the interactive components we were looking to use.
The trial played a large role in gaining that consensus. “We had a few faculties who were originally reluctant to embrace the new direction. By offering the trial and insisting every faculty engage with the chosen platform, this changed a lot of people’s minds. After the trial, they saw what was available and were on board with the change. The trial reassured teachers that what was being delivered was relevant to their students and teaching practice. The decision was made that Box of Books was easiest when accessing and navigating content plus offered the most integrated option including instant links to the interactive components we were looking to use”
We asked how the school evaluates technology providers in general, and Lisa explained: “What’s critical to us is the speed of delivery. When rolling out a new service we don’t want delays. Integration with existing systems is also important, particularly in digital environments. We require Single Sign On simply because we’ve been through the process of allocating passwords and all the issues around that, with attempts to change the password in the past blocking users out of the system. It created such a challenging experience compared with now whereby we have SSO across all our digital content suppliers. Cost is another factor. We always attempt to minimise the cost to parents so we don’t overburden them financially. Hence, a lot of research went into finding the best value for money model during the selection process.”
Lisa noted that the successful schoolwide adoption of the platform boiled down to teacher instruction, ease of access and customer support. “The transition to Box of Books was seamless for students, however, having teachers on board with the changes and providing teacher inservice was key to the successful adoption.” Box of Books provided Professional Development training in person to teachers at St Peter’s Girls’. Additional training continues to be available via webinars and on-demand through an extensive collection of how-to videos and help articles.
“Ease of access is equally important. All our resources are now available through Box of Books, and this has made such a significant difference as all connections to educational content and platforms are housed in the one place”
“Finally, the ability to make the user responsible for their own access and being able to point them to the help button, means I’m not seeing multiple students nor teachers at my desk asking for my assistance. All users know they can click a button and get a response and have their personal problem resolved by expert staff. Since the changeover to Box of Books, it’s quite rare and unusual for me to become involved in resolving issues”
When asked what advice she’d give other schools considering Box of Books, Lisa suggested: “If your school already has a digital strategy, Box of Books is an ideal platform. It’s easy to use, fully integrated with most systems and provides access not just a flat text but all the interactive components which make a huge difference to student engagement and learning.” She added: “This is a great platform, visually appealing and easy to navigate, which enables users to mark resources as favourites. Box of Books has considered all the aspects our school needs in a content delivery platform.”