Staffing costs aside, ICT represents one of the largest elements of a school’s budget, so it is no surprise that when savings need to be made, spending on both equipment and software comes under scrutiny.
But with the role of technology as a teaching tool and in society at large growing all the time, the trick is delivering savings without damaging pupils’ education or putting them at a disadvantage in the world outside school.
One solution is open source software, moving away from proprietorial systems where users pay for a licence. This is the route taken by Pool Academy in Cornwall, which has moved four of its six servers to the free CentOS Linux platforms. Windows is still in place on end-users’ screens, ensuring pupils are familiar with systems they will encounter outside school.