The recent quarantine measures have forced a sudden experiment in distance learning. According to the UNESCO there are an astounding 1'589'837 students in Switzerland that are now learning from home. Teachers are working to provide distance learning, but are hampered by the tools available and the training required to understand the tools.
Solution: We propose using existing free and open software such as learning management and web conferencing systems (for example Moodle and BigBlueButton) to improve outcomes during this period of distance learning, while avoiding privacy issues that are presented from using tools from the big players. Missing functionality can be developed as plugins for those systems and shared with the education community.
Feasibility: These tools exist and are readily available. What is needed is the effort to link them and provide training.
From federal and cantonal authorities, our recommendations are :
- Compile and give access to teacher to "ready to use content". DIP (Département Instruction Public) would approve "ready to use content" by topic through existing channels such as head of content in cycle d'orientation
- Organize a MOOC for teachers: Teaching with Moodle and BigBlueButton
- Compile a list of service providers if schools don't want to host Moodle themselves
From a transversal perspective our recommendations are :
- Data security: Introduction of the existing (for higher education) SWITCH edu-ID in primary school and mandatory school could link many existing educational resources.
- Guarantee uninterrupted operation & long-term data backup : can be allocated by canton ( 1 canton during 1 month is managing the operation)
- Missing functionality such as linkage to email / calendar / videoconference can be developed as plugins for open source education software and shared with the education community.
Prototype of Open source LMS Moodle
- User: test.student
- Pass: Test.student1!
- User: test.teacher
- Pass: Test.teacher1!
Team Challenge #76, Infrastructure for distance learning gathered scientist and parent Alysha, mentor Disha, teacher and parent Servane, e-learning guru Martin.