The Spanish Autonomous Communities are required to comply with the general organisation of the education system defined by the national Ministry of Education, but they still have considerable discretion in implementing the educational policies that best suit their own specificities. As such, they are directly responsible for the policies and actions undertaken to integrate new technologies into their educational systems. They are also very directly involved in implementing these initiatives in terms of creating educational resource portals and other kinds of portals (hosting school platforms, messaging among teachers, platforms for collaboration among teachers, etc.), advice and technical support, and so on.
Accordingly, regional initiatives, sometimes in association with a national initiative, have dealt with infrastructure and school connectivity, ICT training for teachers and pupils, creating digital learning resources and integrating ICT into the curriculum. Especially in Andalusia and Catalonia, strong emphasis has been placed on online training for teachers in the pedagogical use of ICT, on digital learning resources and on technical support that relieves teachers of such concerns. These two Autonomous Communities have moreover opted for open source technology rather than proprietary systems.
Overall, 40 to 60% of state schools in Andalusia and Catalonia use a virtual learning platform. Those responsible for these policies say they are satisfied with teachers’ participation in and contributions to these systems, even if their use is developing steadily rather than massively; they emphasise, however, and regret, too low participation by pupils and very limited parental participation. Interest in the administrative use of platforms, which support for example information provision in real time relating to all the schools in a region, is growing rapidly and being consolidated in Andalusia, although this does not seem to be a priority in Catalonia.