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MLE Matrix

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Dimensions Visioning Scoping Planning Implementation Maturity/ Sustainability
Educative Purpose (establishing the "Why?") Does the school have a current vision?
Does it anticipate the needs learners will have in 20 years? 50 years?
Is there agreement among the community of the school about the vision, mission and educative purpose of the school/centre? Is there a clear articulation of the school/centre’s educative purpose and beliefs about learning that is referenced throughout the planning process? Is the school/centre’s educative purpose revisited as the development occurs, and referred to regularly as decisions are made.Is the educative purpose of the school/centre regularly reviewed and communicated to ensure they are widely acknowledged /owned?
Learner focus What are your beliefs about a learner-centred approach to learning? What needs to be different for learners in the digital age? Who are the learners that the proposed MLE is being designed for? Are their needs identified? Where is their ‘voice’ in the process? How are the ideas and needs of learners incorporated into the planning process? Does the design of the MLE give learners agency in the way they learn and interact? How will learners continue to be a part of the design and development of the MLE?
Teaching and learning What are the pedagogical beliefs and practices that underpin teaching and learning in the school/centre? Does the community agree on what is fundamental to learn? What are the current pedagogical practices in the school/centre? Are these consistent with the beliefs about effective teaching and learning? Which may need to change? Are the pedagogical beliefs and practices articulated and used to inform learning space design? How might these be prototyped in your current context? Does the actual design of learning space enable the pedagogical aspirations of staff?

Do all staff adhere to the articulated pedagogies?
Is there a regular process of review to ensure that pedagogical beliefs and practices remain enabled in this space when staff leave etc.?
Learning space design What are your understandings about the relationship between pedagogy and space? What other models are you looking at to ensure thinking takes account of what is possible? How are the current learning spaces configured? How are they used? In what ways do they, and their use, aid or hinder effective learning and teaching? Do the designs reflect current thinking about flexibility, openness and ‘fit for purpose’? Is there a team set up to review the designs? How might prototypes be used to ‘practice’ with?/td> Does the actual use of space match the design intention? What modifications/iterations may be necessary? Is there an ongoing review of how learning spaces are used, with an opportunity to rearrange them as required?
Networks How is the potential of ‘connectedness’ realised in your school/centre? What relationships currently exist with other individuals/groups? How can these help deliver wide and deep curricula? Which aspects of learning will we offer ourselves and which will we offer via networks? Is your network being used practically to provide the depth/breadth of learning experiences for students, and for accessing peer review of your MLE process? What process will we use to ensure our on-going needs are met via networked provision? How will you sustain these relationships?
Finance / funding What funding will be available for new development? Where from? What opportunities are there for partnerships? Where is funding currently committed? What supplemental and ongoing costs are involved? Where is there potential for savings or re-allocation? Has consideration been given to funding required for all aspects of the MLE, including ongoing resourcing and operational costs? Is the development of the MLE being completed within budget? Is there contingency for unexpected omissions or emergent opportunities? Are there processes in place to ensure funding is in place for repairs, maintenance, replacements and renewals?
Furniture and equipment What furniture ‘works’ to achieve your vision, and what doesn’t? Why? Are you aware of the range of alternatives that are now available? Can you try some out? Is there an inventory list of all current furniture and equipment? Will furniture and equipment enable flexibility or standardize practice in the MLE? Consider flexibility, adaptability, robustness and durability. Is F&E adaptable to emergent need, and enable flexible use of the learning space? Are learners and/or teachers able to initiate these changes? Is there an ongoing process to review the use made of F&E, with the opportunity to change and adapt as appropriate? Does this inform a regular replacement process?
Technology/ICT How are digital technologies changing the way learning and teaching occurs in schools/centres? What are the digital competencies you want your learners to have? Have you completed an audit of current IT investment. What is working? What isn’t? At what level is the current competence of staff? Is there a process for assessing how ICTs can support your vision for learning? Does this inform investment in services, infrastructure, and PD? Are the ICTs that are implemented supporting the agreed learning needs and pedagogical approaches? Does all technology use ensure the principles of ubiquity, agency and connectedness are met?
Environmental sustainability How might the local environment, weather, landscape, and history influence the design decisions for the MLE? Are there particular areas of sustainability and environment that are issues in the current context? What environmental design features are to be incorporated in the MLE - how do they reflect the local context? Does the design give thought to natural light, energy efficient lighting, heating and use of water, solar panels and sustainably sourced materials? How will you gather data on sustainability and energy use? What systems will you use to review the school/centre’s energy & water use etc. to improve efficiency?
Civic presence How will you want your school/centre to be profiled in the community?

What community cultures/assets/resources would you like to be able to make use of and have available to your students?
What profile does/will your school/centre to have in the community?

What community cultures/assets/resources do you currently make use of?
How will the physical presence of your buildings reinforce the profile in the community you want to achieve?

What partnerships will you enter into regarding use of community cultures/assets/resource?
How does the use of colour, signage and environmental planting enhance the profile of your buildings?

What logistical considerations are required to effectively use shared cultures/assets/resource?
How will you use evidence to assess and improve your use of community cultures/assets/resources? (Communities, groups, libraries, learning centres, pools etc.)
Process elements Visioning Scoping Planning ImplementationMaturity/ Sustainability
Change leadership Does the whole school/centre community understand why there is a need to change? Can this process be led internally, or do you need an external facilitator? Who are the leaders in the school/centre currently? Is there anyone with specific experience in change leadership? Design and building/project management? Is there a clearly articulated plan for change that is communicated to all stakeholders, that identifies roles and responsibilities, and is adaptive to change? Have you chosen the right systems, structures, tools and support to enable people to implement the change? Is the process iterative? Can stakeholders ‘see’ their contributions to it? What processes will you use to review the effectiveness of the change, and make recommendations for improvement?
Collaborative Culture What does collaboration and a collaborative culture look like in a MLE? Why is it important? How can it be created? What examples of collaborative activity currently exist within your school/centre? How will staff, parents and students be involved in the process? What processes will be used? What protocols and strategies need to be developed to support collaboration? How can the built environment be organized to promote collaborative activity ahead of individualism? How will collaboration be practiced, supported and maintained? By teachers? By students? Are collaborative approaches modeled in all of the ways learning occurs and teaching is done? Are collaborative approaches used as a matter of course in all aspects of the MLE? Are students, teachers and parents empowered to participate in collaborative ways?
Community engagement Where is the key drive for the MLE coming from? How does it reflect the needs of the community? Is there a clear community consultation plan that will ensure all school voices are represented? Are you using a comprehensive approach (tool) to capture the voice of the whole school/centre community and use this to inform the planning process? Are all stakeholders informed of how planning decisions have been made, and can see how their feedback has been taken into account? Is there a plan for an ongoing cycle of consultation with the school/centre community?
Professional learning and development Is there a shared understanding of what makes for effective PLD, and why this is important for staff working in a MLE? Have you completed a review of current staff needs, competencies and aspirations? Where are the gaps? What PLD process will ensure staff will be able to work effectively in the MLE? Is there an effective PLD plan in place? Does it reflect the different needs of staff? Are there suitably qualified/ experienced people available to lead this? Are all staff participating in PLD to prepare for teaching in the MLE? Is this underpinned by a practice of professional inquiry? Is the review process informed by the reflections of staff, students and community to ensure the iterative MLE development, and is it linked to setting personal and school/centre PLD goals?
Evaluation & self-review Is there agreement on the vision and values for the MLE? Is there a shared understanding of the ‘why’? Has a clear case for the MLE initiative been established? Does the plan for the MLE initiative meet expectations, and can it be achieved within the budget and timeframes? Does the design of the MLE enable the sorts of learning espoused in the school/centre’s educative purpose and values? Is there sufficient flexibility in the MLE to accommodate changes in preference and approach by teachers and students?

Download a copy of this matrix (PDF, 1.6MB)


Success measures

What are the measures you will use to assess how well your MLE is suited to supporting learning in the 21st Century?


  • is learning able to happen anywhere, at any time, at any pace and with or through any device within the MLE?
  • does the physical environment demonstrate sufficient flexibility and open-ness to allow this to happen?
  • does the technical environment support ubiquitous access to the internet for all, with and through his/her own device?
  • does the design for and facilitation of learning encourage this?


  • do students have ‘the power to act’ in the MLE?
  • are all learners empowered to make choices and decisions about how, where, what and when they learn?
  • are learners a part of their own learning support network within the MLE?
  • Is the design of the MLE adaptive to learner needs and ambitions?


  • is the MLE a part of a network of provision?
  • do staff value being networked as a part of their own professional learning?
  • does the activity of the MLE embrace and enable learning at home and other community facilities?
  • does the activity of the MLE have global reach?
  • does the MLE enable and support the learning of the whole community