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AV and Multimedia Related Thread, Interactive Whiteboard Install Height? in Technical; Hi folks, I've got war breaking out between our Site Team and a teacher because the latter wants an interactive ...
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    Gongalong's Avatar
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    Question Interactive Whiteboard Install Height?

    Hi folks,

    I've got war breaking out between our Site Team and a teacher because the latter wants an interactive whiteboard moved higher but the former says it's against "working at height" rules.

    Annoyingly the board in question is at 0.9m from floor level, whereas most of the others are at 1m. Although in this case the teacher wants it moved up 30cm.

    Is anyone aware of any guidelines or even legislation about heights that interactive whiteboards should be installed at?

    TIA

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    NikChillin's Avatar
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    If our teachers want them moved up or down we do it, if the previous teacher was 6 foot 5 and their replacement turned out to be 4 foot 11 there would obviously be problems. Anyway, the board is fixed to the wall so I don't think the regs apply. It needs to be use usable and bureaucracy for the sake of 30 cm seems a bit petty to me.

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    plexer's Avatar
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    Can the teacher reach the top area of the board without stretching? will they still be able too if it were moved up?

    What working at height rules?

    Ben

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    TechSupp's Avatar
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    But then again if its an Interactive Board, should not the factor as to its height be the height of the kids who 'should' be using it as an interactive tool. If they are not using it, take it away and replace with a whiteboard. Much cheaper dont think that would involve H+S.

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    surely occupational health would suggest that it be at a comfortable working height for the person that needs to use it? I think your site team sound like they are coming up with an excuse to not have to move it.

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    What model IWB is it?

    I'm not aware of any H&S rules on this for the IWB. I think from memory BECTA brought in a rule that projectors should be no lower then 2.1m from the ground.

    Just comes down to common sense really, whats the point in having an IWB and not being able to reach the top of it?

    But on the same note, if the students can't see the bottom of the IWB from the back of the classroom this could also be reason to raise it.

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    'Working at Height' only applies if you can hurt yourself falling from it:

    A place is 'at height' if (unless these Regulations are followed) a person could be injured falling from it, even if it is at or below ground level.
    Source: http://www.hse.gov.uk/pubns/indg401.pdf

    They might be referring to H&S guidelines about having to lift heavy things above head-height, but there are no H&S regulations I am aware of that cover having to lift something as light as a whiteboard pen.

    Back to the real question: if the primary user of the board can reach the top and bottom edges without having to bend down or use a step, it doesn't need moving. If this is not the case, it does need moving.

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    I would ask the site staff to justify the reason why they are bringing working at height in to it as am sure you could argue a similar health and safety point about a board being mounted too low as it would involve bending and potential damage to the teachers back. Perhaps the site staff are not allowed to use ladders!

    There are a couple of aspects to an interactive whiteboard and getting the two to marry up well can be difficult, that is using and viewing. If the board is low enough for children to use then it may well be too low for teachers and to be seen at the back of a classroom. If it is high enough for a teacher or to be seen at the back of a classroom then it is possibly too high for children to use. This of course depends on age of the children, year 10+ it is likely to be the other way round, low enough for the teacher and high enough for the children ;-). An expensive alternative is to get a whiteboard lift, but this assumes you have a short throw projector and a hefty chunk of spare cash.

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    Quote Originally Posted by plexer View Post
    Can the teacher reach the top area of the board without stretching? will they still be able too if it were moved up?
    Just to add a bit more background, this is a Science room. The kids all sit on the high type of stool, so the kids at the front block the kids at the back from seeing a large section of the board.

    IME the average height teacher can only just reach a board installed at 1m height, and that's when they're stretching to reach.
    Quote Originally Posted by plexer View Post
    What working at height rules?
    County Council guidelines.
    Quote Originally Posted by TechSupp View Post
    But then again if its an Interactive Board, should not the factor as to its height be the height of the kids who 'should' be using it as an interactive tool. If they are not using it, take it away and replace with a whiteboard. Much cheaper dont think that would involve H+S.
    The teacher has done some "user testing", and from that has deduced 1.2m from ground is the best balance for students being able to see and use. I'm sure that some students will not be able to reach :-/
    Quote Originally Posted by Oaktech View Post
    surely occupational health would suggest that it be at a comfortable working height for the person that needs to use it? I think your site team sound like they are coming up with an excuse to not have to move it.
    No comment :-)
    Quote Originally Posted by Educare_AV View Post
    What model IWB is it?
    An SB680.
    Quote Originally Posted by Educare_AV View Post
    I'm not aware of any H&S rules on this for the IWB. I think from memory BECTA brought in a rule that projectors should be no lower then 2.1m from the ground.
    I've heard BECTA quoted before re. projectors also, in the context of brightness (therefore distance from the screen, but that will depend on the lumens anyway).
    Quote Originally Posted by Educare_AV View Post
    Just comes down to common sense really, whats the point in having an IWB and not being able to reach the top of it?
    But on the same note, if the students can't see the bottom of the IWB from the back of the classroom this could also be reason to raise it.[/QUOTE]
    Yep, the latter.
    Quote Originally Posted by AngryTechnician View Post
    They might be referring to H&S guidelines about having to lift heavy things above head-height, but there are no H&S regulations I am aware of that cover having to lift something as light as a whiteboard pen.
    This is specifically about having to use a step ladder or stool to reach something when it's not necessary.
    Quote Originally Posted by AngryTechnician View Post
    Back to the real question: if the primary user of the board can reach the top and bottom edges without having to bend down or use a step, it doesn't need moving. If this is not the case, it does need moving.
    As per above it's re. the students being able to see what's projected, and trading off with using it.
    Quote Originally Posted by sjatkn View Post
    There are a couple of aspects to an interactive whiteboard and getting the two to marry up well can be difficult, that is using and viewing.
    Yep exactly that.

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    If the IWB was installed at 1.2m this would bring the top of the IWB to 2.46m which in my opinion would be unreachable. I personally wouldn't suggest installing any higher then 100cm maybe 105cm max.

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    Another alternative to allow the IWB to be higher up and still be usable is to have a dias built for the users to stand on or get a fold away one (Whiteboard Step Up | Whiteboard Step | Loxit).

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    plexer's Avatar
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    Anyone standing on that to access the IWB would be classe as working at height.

    Ben

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    There height adjustable board mounting options - not cheap but they are out there.
    Mounting a board so high just means that you cant use all of it - it is logical to have the board at a height that allows you to reach all areas of it so that you can utilisemore of the surface.

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    Gongalong (21st November 2012)

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    plexer: there-in lies the rub I suspect.

    petetownsend58: any rough idea on cost? The other issue would be the projector of course.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gongalong View Post
    Hi folks,

    I've got war breaking out between our Site Team and a teacher because the latter wants an interactive whiteboard moved higher but the former says it's against "working at height" rules.

    Annoyingly the board in question is at 0.9m from floor level, whereas most of the others are at 1m. Although in this case the teacher wants it moved up 30cm.

    Is anyone aware of any guidelines or even legislation about heights that interactive whiteboards should be installed at?

    TIA

    There is no legislation about the height of whiteboards - just recommendations.

    To be fair it's the teacher using the whiteboard, so we normally enquire as to who is using it and find a happy medium between the reach of the teachers and a sensible height for the students looking at it.

    The "working at height" bit, I presume they mean building regulations where light switches have a max height of 1.2m.

    Doesn't apply to whiteboards as there are alternative options ie wireless slates.


    Regards,

    Jeff

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