Staff and parents at Kimi Ora School share the benefits e-portfolios provide for engaging families with students' progress and for transitioning students from the school to a day base.
When we enrol a child, we believe that we’re enrolling a family and the key relationship with a family is the partnership that exists between school and home. e-Portfolios are an integral part of that partnership by allowing families to participate in ongoing formative assessment.
Having the e-portfolios, I think, has really been so beneficial to our relationships with our families. Every single kid arrives in a taxi everyday and goes home in a taxi everyday so we don’t have mum dropping them off and being able to catch-up like I guess you do in mainstream, and e-portfolios have meant that we can catch-up.
Its immense, it gives us a real rare insight into what actually Joshy does at school. Previously in the previous 20 years of his education it was in the form of a written journal that used to come home with him everyday but now with the e-portfolio we can actually, my wife and I and sister can hook on and virtually see what Joshy does on a day-to-day basis. Things that we’ve never imagined or he never does at home. It’s a fantastic tool.
Blogger enables us to make everything that we put on there completely private to everyone unless we’ve specified. So initially I specified me and my parents as the admin so we have the right to change and chop around everything we want and that meant that they could then, you know, send the email to invite family members or friends or whoever they wanted to which worked out perfectly. I’ve got one parent who’s actually opened it up to public for anyone to see because she wants to share it with anyone else who has a special needs child out there that might benefit from it.
It’s a very very simple tool to use and we’ve actually sent the link to family, friends, Joshua’s old school and they’ve all hooked on as well.
One of my young men at the moment we’re transitioning to a day base that he’ll be attending next year so the e-portfolio as of next term will then be opened up to the people that are working with him at the day base as well. So they can, for example, see what he looks like in his standing frame and see, you know, how do we get him into it or how do we get him into his pacer they can see all of that. You know, writing down a certain activity that he might do is all-good on paper but actually for them to see it means they know exactly what they’re doing.
Friends and family can actually now see Joshua doing what he’s always done and now they can actually visually see it and also, it also highlights what a fantastic school Kimi Ora is with having such a resource and such a fantastic school. People actually see for themselves through the images on the e-portfolio. It’s amazing; it’s a major talking point amongst our family and friends