If they embraced it instead of complaining about it... it'd go down better
Why would teachers (except perhaps ICT specialists) be told this stuff?
You've got to remember that IT is about 10%, if that, of their actual teaching provision and even then it's a case of "it should work". They don't care who provides it, how much it costs (unless they are paying from their own budget) or what will and won't run until the day they walk in and find it doesn't, won't or can't work.
Add to that they have the plethora of new government initiatives being thrown at them on how standing on your left frontal lobe while singing the British National Anthem in C minor has been shown to increase concentration, and the like.
Bottom line, to 99% of teachers IT is an arcane art form ruled by wizards and trolls (depending on whether it's working or not ) and they just don't have the time or rather the inclination to care or worry about the future. Thus, when it all does finally come in, they'll scream ruddy murder for about a week (if that) and then add it to the long list of other gripes and problems they have.
To be completely honest seeing the other half job hunting and noting the number of head teacher and SMT positions being advertised I think the biggest problem is going to be a total lack of leadership. IT is really not going to be their priority.
If they embraced it instead of complaining about it... it'd go down better
Here someone tries to put the fear of God into Teachers to try and start a groundswell against Managed Services and the disaster it will create not to mention the loss of our jobs..
and you try to pacify them by saying it’s not so bad….?!?
Oh crap now Grumbledook is trying to play sitting on the fence and it's not all bad and it might be quite good card.. :P
Christ you guys just kill any movement to support In House ICT
Last edited by Grommit; 12th February 2008 at 10:24 PM.
No .. I said the same I have on other occasions ... for some it will be better than what they have at the moment, for some it will make little difference (to either the ICT or the T&L that ICT has an impact on) and for some it will screw things up.
I am also pointing out, again, that we can point blame at lots of places, but if you are serious about trying to get some groundswell of support yo have to realise that this is the Govts answer to a problem
Come up with a better solution and people will listen. Jump up and down and moan and you will get ignored or laughed at. The only other option is to come out fighting and that involved unions. They are being surprisingly quiet. Teaching unions are not interested at the moment. A cynic might say (as one union person has said to me) that if the first few schools fail then they can use some of it to get a better deal for teachers. Teaching unions are going to be no help at this time.
Seriously ... come up with a plan, one that people can really see being worth giving a go, and you may be happy to get a response.
A few t-shirts suggestions for BETT 2009....
Businesses Siphon the Funds
Bleed Schools of Finances
Bankrolling Shysters and Fatcats
Buying Substandard Facilities
Buying Sycophants Ferraris
When I worked in industry my employer had a set of rules, or 'business conduct guidelines'. One of these rules was that you should never be disparaging about competitors. We were told that breaking this rule would result in disciplinary action and could lead to dismissal. However, we were also told how to ensure that our customers and prospective customers were well informed about our product strengths vs the competition by asking the right questions
Now, if you apply this philosophy to BSF, it says
Don't waste time knocking the suppliers or bidders or supporters who are promoting BSF, they are only doing their job..... all you will do is be accused of self-interest & trying to protect the status quo. Network Managers are often accused of being very protective towards 'their' networks..... I occasionally have to remind myself from time to time that it's not 'my' network it's the schools
I am not saying we should roll-over without a fight; we should be prepared to challenge all aspects of BSF in a critical, positive way.
There is nothing to prevent you from pointing out how well things work now, or allow you to ask searching questions about how things might work in the future. Cracks will appear in the polished solutions proposed if you probe hard enough. I do agree however that for some schools BSF will undoubtedly provide a better more professional ICT service.
Don't expect much support from the Trade Unions. There are too few ICT staff in the unions to make it a major issue. The Unions have their hands full with wage negotiations, Single Status, threats of litigation because of sex discrimination to worry about a few ICT staff..... the Unions will be happy as long as TUPE rules are followed.
Not knocking BSF bidders does not stop you from ensuring that the school leadership team at your school is well prepared to ask probing questions of potential suppliers or make sure that the Draft Output specification is packed with detail that will ensure your school gets the level of service it wants from a managed service provider. You may make it un-affordable in the process, but at least this will enable you to point out forcibly that schools will either have to pay more or accept less.
I seek every opportunity to challenge BSF; I try very hard to be constructive although it can be difficult at times.
If all of the head teachers in a LA were to agree that they wanted to maintain their ICT support staffing levels before the bidding process begins then the LA would have to take this into consideration.
There are changes happening in the BSF process; some LAs are making significant progress in convincing PfS that they have a greater role to play in delivering the managed ICT service. This is not being achieved by being negative towards BSF, but by showing how things could be done better by involving the LA in a greater capacity.
It doesn't matter what we or any-one else thinks. In the end all LT can see in front of them is a shiny new school with shiny classrooms and shiny ICT kit. Bugger the consequences!
My Head knew nothing about how BSF would affect the in house ICT delivery (primarily because they're not being told by the LA) and has said 'over my dead body will I sign up to that' but everyone knows that it's not the Head's decision in the end - foundation or not and that we'll get TUPED over regardless.
Teachers won't care in the main because in my experience they just don't. We're a different and much lower class and we should expect to be treated like dirt! So long as they keep their holidays and get paid more for doing less they'll remain happy(ish).
The first things that will be said is that we need to show how we are accountable and what impact we have within the school.
Senior Leaders & Teachers have OFSTED, we have nothing ... nought ... zilch ... zero ... not a sausage ...
When I previously raised about companies that might come into schools to do this sort of measuring it was shot down.
Now ... would anyone seriously like to tell me that they think that we should keep our jobs, not have any one above us who understands what we are doing, not have any meaningful way of measuring what we do and we still get to dictate the environment that staff and students work in?
I will continue to argue that BSF has good *AND* bad points, but people have got to wake up and understand that we would have a better case if some of the above starts to get addresses.
I know jobs are on the line, I know that this is going to be a nightmare for some schools ... I also know that there are things that can be done to limit damage and to try and stop heads having to screw over their staff because they are getting steamrollered by the LA.
The Govt is not going to back down on a massively financed, vote-winning education rebuild just because network managers and technicians are going to be screwed over. This affects many site staff too ... but they have had their jobs pushed around for years ... why should we be treated any different?
leco (12th February 2008)
So how about we start with... between now and July (coursework time, amongst other things) - let's remove all ICT and Email access from staff and students, and see what effect this has on T&L, exam results, attendance and general day-to-day running of the school.
Exactly - so what is the point in trying to get our point across? This counter-argues your own point made a few posts ago in this same thread - "Come up with a better solution and people will listen."The Govt is not going to back down on a massively financed, vote-winning education rebuild just because network managers and technicians are going to be screwed over.
They will not back down ... they will not stop the scheme. They will, however, allow schools more freedom to decide want they want and what they need. From chatting with a variety of people in different groups a common complaint is that the last thing Govt wants is for LAs to have total control of what happens ... have people seen what happens with PFI in some LAs? No wonder they want to try a more prescriptive model. At the same time that are also doing a more bespoke and individual model ... it is called the Academies network.
I just want to add a quote from the TES forum, from NWLG.
...innovation is seen as an expensive luxury. Standardisation affordable.
As I mentioned before..
The LEA employs a Uber Consultant that will go around to each school and make sure that all the schools that opted out of the Managed Services are meeting certain levels ..
Take Lambeth... that is a RM managed Service Borogh.. yet half the schools opted out and the same reasons are the same ones that the BSF raises... (loss of control etc)
So make sure that a school has a standard to remain In-House ie FITS... and than the Uber Consultant can watch over them and advise them...
webman (13th February 2008)
Think our place could be struggling for any IT support soon. We don't particularly want to be TUPED and as our recent job evaluations proposes cutting our wages to something we can't live off may not be here long. Of the three of us ones due to retire and the other two are looking elsewhere...considering what we do the school may be in for a shock well before BSF takes over.
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