An Apple for the teachers – ATLP leaders receive technology accolade

Two tech-savvy teachers from Mere Green and Slade Primary Schools, part of the respected Arthur Terry Learning Partnership (ATLP), have been appointed Apple Distinguished Educators.

The ADE is a relationship programme focused on educational excellence and leadership.  Mere Green’s and ATLP’s technology lead, Terri Coombs, and Sam Scadeng, Slade’s history and geography lead, are the first partnership primary school Apple teachers to achieve this status, having revolutionised teaching and learning across their schools and the learning trust.

Sam Scadeng and tech-savvy pupils from ATLP’s Slade Primary School

The pair faced strong competition from thousands of applicants across Europe for the coveted ADE place.  They are now part of a global community of education leaders and innovators pioneering Apple technology in and out of the classroom.

Terri Coombs and Apple-loving pupils from Mere Green Primary School

As an ATLP leader and Specialist Leader of Education for the Arthur Terry National Teaching School, Mrs Coombs collaborates with primary schools across the partnership, which are using Apple technology to improve teaching and learning and work-life balance for teachers.

She said:

I’m delighted and honoured to be part of this pioneering programme, because I can bring even more ideas and innovation to our classrooms. It’s an exciting time for us and I look forward to being part of a global network of Apple Distinguished Educators.  Our schools have embraced new technologies that enhance teaching and learning, with authentic learning opportunities that prepare children for their future. We’re embedding this across our trust and creating a culture of open learning for everybody and efficient ways of working in schools.”

Mr Scadeng has led Slade’s one-to-one iPad revolution in class and supports teachers across school to enhance teaching and learning by using technology. He is also used to performing at the highest level, as a former England Deaf Rugby international.

He said:

I am thrilled to be joining a global network of teachers and educators. ADEs foster innovation in education by promoting powerful ideas and developing content to enhance teaching and learning – all of which we can bring back to the thousands of children in our partnership. Our schools are known for having cultures of improvement – It’s a fantastic feeling to know that Terri and I can now add to that even further.”

In July, Mrs Coombs and Mr Scadeng will attend the first ADE training institute in Amsterdam. ADEs share how they are using Apple technologies to transform teaching and learning in their own institutions. By participating in informative general sessions, hands-on workshops and shared project teams, ADEs return home with a shared sense of purpose as they develop content and powerful ideas for improving teaching and learning.

Anna Balson, ATLP’s executive headteacher (primary) said:

Terri and Sam are exceptional leaders who’ve transformed teaching across our MAT primaries. They have brought our IT vision to life and engaged, children, families and staff. The impact is phenomenal – pupils are producing work to an even greater standard; teachers are benefiting from the flexibility of ‘smart’ technology and all of that has had a significant impact on outcomes.  We’re all proud of them. They are real ambassadors for this partnership and their ADE status means they will provide even more opportunities for our children to excel.”  

 Impact snapshots:

 How Apple technology is at the core of ATLP’s advances in teaching and learning

Since 2018, ATLP’s Mere Green and Slade primary schools have been trialling a 1:1 device solution in key year groups.  At Mere Green every child in years 2, 3 and 4 has their own iPad for teaching and learning, and this will continue to grow over the next two years to include years 5 and 6.  At Slade year 5 have been pioneers and will grow the project a year at a time.

iPads have been an enabler for Mere Green’s SEND children – it has narrowed the gap in attainment and progress through a wide range of teaching and learning strategies that utilise the device’s capabilities to support the children in previously unattainable ways.

In year 3, the iPads have been an enabler in promoting engagement and independence. With the opportunity to create more varied content, children have more flexibility and ownership of their learning, which increases engagement. When children are more engaged they are more willing and able to take greater pride in their work and achievements, which can also be showcased immediately with parents at home who can positively reinforce successful messages. Providing children with the ability to be successful in a media that suits there learning style allows them to create content that gives all aspects of learning a purposeful meaning. The year 3 project has been including in a case study written by


Slade Primary School: “iPads aren’t substitutes for traditional methods, they’re enhancements. I can navigate my children through a lesson at the click of a button while maintaining excellent engagement and BFL.”

Using technology has captured unmotivated pupils imagination and brought them back to what matters – the learning.”

Wider impact:

William MacGregor School has recently started a 1:1 project with year 3 and Scotch Orchard School is planning to deploy devices in June 2019. Four primaries across the partnership are beginning to use iPads to enhance teaching and learning.