It must be a quiet news day because I found myself featured in the newspapers this morning. The Scotsman newspaper had me joining the ‘Global Elite’ and the Dundee Courier had an article claiming that ‘The Force is with Former Teacher’.
I am used to reading about, seeing and hearing my ultra-high profile colleagues Derek Robertson (who I thought was just brilliant on BBC Breakfast, Radio 5 Live, BBC Manchester, BBC Scotland and Reporting Scotland last week) and the ubiquitous Ewan McIntosh (who has the energy and dynamism to feature simultaneously across BBC Learning, GuardianUnlimited and The Economist).
The story behind my appearance in the press started with a meeting last summer with Milton Chen, GLEF CEO, arranged by the late Tony van der Kuyl. Milton was fascinated by the work LTS is doing around computer games for learning, the live web/web 2.0 and of course Glow. His view was that LTS’ work in these areas is of international significance and that we are leaders in the field. Considering the global reach of GLEF I took this as praise indeed and have used the endorsement as a stimulus for us to continue further along the path of innovation.
So although I am really delighted at a personal level with this prestigious honour it really does the recognise wider achievement across LTS and beyond. The wonderful thing about Glow is that it is not any one person’s property. There are many hands implicated in taking Glow to where it is now. Crucially John Connell, Stuart Robertson, Neil Macfarlane and for a while Jim Buchan along with their bosses in the senior civil service (as their bosses the government ministers) for taking the early risks. Local authority staff at all levels for helping to develop the specification and sticking with the project through thick and thin. My colleagues within LTS, including Marie Dougan and Paul Campbell, for all the ingenuity and creativity that it took to turn a crazy idea into a practical reality. The commercial companies, especially RM the eventual winner of the contract, that we worked with to move from specification to working solution also deserve considerable credit. I would even want to thank our few (but sometimes fierce and often misinformed) critics as they made sure we were never complacent and took nothing for granted.
In a very Scottish way I want to pass on my congratulations to all those who have worked with LTS to bring innovation into Scottish classrooms, helping in a small way to ensure that future generations get the best education in the world – a Scottish education.
I might just pause briefly this evening and have a small glass of something to celebrate our success. I think the toast has to be ‘ may the force be with you – each and every one of you’ (: