+ Post New Thread
Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 16
BSF Thread, "Playground Bullies" - Private Eye (24th July) in United Kingdom (UK) Specific Forums; Interesting little article in there about a report on BSF by "Policy Exchange, a right leaning think-tank" based on interviews ...
  1. #1

    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Surburbia
    Posts
    2,178
    Thank Post
    74
    Thanked 307 Times in 243 Posts
    Rep Power
    115

    "Playground Bullies" - Private Eye (24th July)

    Interesting little article in there about a report on BSF by "Policy Exchange, a right leaning think-tank" based on interviews with a variety of "stakeholders"

    The article alleges that "when a draft was leaked to PfS ... it resorted to dirty tricks to silence the criticism ... Interviewees were leaned on to tone down or withdraw their remarks, with the implicit threat that their businesses or careers would suffer if they did not". It goes into more detail.

    There's a PDF of the presumably toned down report PDF here.. Worth a look, although I suspect some of you will take exception to some of what they say on why ICT should be detached from BSF.

  2. #2
    conehead's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Posts
    189
    Thank Post
    30
    Thanked 13 Times in 10 Posts
    Rep Power
    16
    I like this bit.

    BSF is a bit like buying a new TV –
    the new set looks great when you put in the corner of your sitting room,
    but it’s the programmes that actually make you want to keep coming back for
    more – and after a while, you forget that you have even got a new telly! If the
    programmes haven’t improved in the meantime, everything goes back to how it
    used to be.”

  3. #3
    Diello's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Kent, England
    Posts
    1,064
    Thank Post
    112
    Thanked 228 Times in 128 Posts
    Rep Power
    74
    Not bad... "This one-size-fits-all approach to ICT is potentially harmful for
    education, driving out innovation. Some schools have been developing their own
    ICT systems and programmes, experimenting with innovations such as mobile
    technology. In such cases ICT is a critical part of changing the way they teach, and
    schools should be free to explore what works for their pupils. Some headteachers
    who have tried to opt out of the managed service but have been blocked by PfS
    are considering taking this to judicial review."

    ...it's good to see this sort of thing starting to come more often.

  4. #4

    broc's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    England
    Posts
    2,046
    Thank Post
    104
    Thanked 401 Times in 265 Posts
    Rep Power
    150
    I think the report sums up Partnership for Schools pretty well

  5. #5


    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    8,202
    Thank Post
    442
    Thanked 1,032 Times in 812 Posts
    Rep Power
    339
    never thought I'd see myself agreeing with a right wing think tank

  6. #6

    broc's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    England
    Posts
    2,046
    Thank Post
    104
    Thanked 401 Times in 265 Posts
    Rep Power
    150
    Quote Originally Posted by CyberNerd View Post
    never thought I'd see myself agreeing with a right wing think tank
    I have to say I agree with you; the trouble is the Govt will dismiss this report outright because of its origin and the fact that it is so critical of what has been/is a flagship policy of theirs.

  7. #7

    GrumbleDook's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Gosport, Hampshire
    Posts
    9,935
    Thank Post
    1,341
    Thanked 1,783 Times in 1,106 Posts
    Blog Entries
    19
    Rep Power
    594
    Funny since the ideas for a lot of the Academy program, BSF and Specialist Schools had originally come out of right wing think tanks! Glad to see the report is out there but there is still a big element of blame management going on here.

  8. #8
    Face-Man's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    London
    Posts
    577
    Thank Post
    11
    Thanked 58 Times in 40 Posts
    Rep Power
    70
    This is a worrying report on lots of levels that would appear to be supporting the use of abacus in schools and going back to the "good old days"

    Just as the Government has failed to back up the link between buildings and achievement, so too has it failed to provide firm evidence that ICT raises attainment, and failed to provide good suggestions of how to change practice to support teachers using new technology in schools.
    The government doesn't need to show ICT raises attainment just as it doesn't need to show using a pencil/pen does. ICT is just a tool an everyday basic need for education. I'd have like to see them produce this report without some ICT education !!

    Now there conclusions about the BSF programme may or may not be correct but with such a negative view of the potential for the use of ICT in schools I think they are best heed this quote
    The past is a foreign country; they do things differently there. Leslie Poles Hartley

  9. #9
    torledo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Posts
    2,928
    Thank Post
    168
    Thanked 155 Times in 126 Posts
    Rep Power
    48
    Quote Originally Posted by GrumbleDook View Post
    Funny since the ideas for a lot of the Academy program, BSF and Specialist Schools had originally come out of right wing think tanks! Glad to see the report is out there but there is still a big element of blame management going on here.
    that's not a surprise at all, as BSF is a PFI project it stands to reason that as a vehicle for more private sector involvement and a method to off-balance sheet spending it originates from such think tanks.

    the trouble is, it was wholly unnecessary. The govt. can and should have run budget deficits and not worried about how it was going to 'afford' these ambitious school and hospital building projects. Complicating the issue with a PPP just all seems a bit pointless when you look at the current enforced budget deficit and debt as a % of gdp numbers [which have broken all previous voluntarily implemented fiscal rules]

    The interesting thing is if BSF wasn't PFI what would the ICT element look like, each school individually have given the extra cash to choose as they saw fit ? Or would that never have been an option irrespective of how BSF was to be funded. IT probably would have ended up that too many vested interests at play and the inevitable award of such contracts to private sector MSP's, the whole big is good approach seems to have pervaded public sector procurement.

  10. #10
    Butuz's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Wales, UK
    Posts
    1,579
    Thank Post
    211
    Thanked 220 Times in 176 Posts
    Rep Power
    63
    Quote Originally Posted by torledo View Post
    The interesting thing is if BSF wasn't PFI what would the ICT element look like, each school individually have given the extra cash to choose as they saw fit ?
    This is what I have always said - if they gave us the 1.5 to 2 million per school, we would transform ICT in Education too - only we would make a much better job as we would actually implement what each individual school required, and we wouldn't all be wasting Millions on Consultancy, politics and Legal rubbish - we would actually put the money straight into the classrooms!!!



    Butuz
    Last edited by Butuz; 17th August 2009 at 09:26 AM.

  11. #11

    sparkeh's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Posts
    6,748
    Thank Post
    1,275
    Thanked 1,651 Times in 1,106 Posts
    Blog Entries
    22
    Rep Power
    506
    Quote Originally Posted by Butuz View Post
    This is what I have always said - if they gave us the 1.5 to 2 million per school, we would transform ICT in Education too - only we would make a much better job as we would actually implement what each individual school required, and we wouldn't all be wasting Millions on Consultancy, politics and Legal rubbish - we would actually put the money straight into the classrooms!!!
    I can't say that I totally believe that to be true. Some schools would do a better job and some would wouldn't. I could show you number of schools where money is bably invested in a whole range of projects, for a whole number of reasons. Giving the money directly to the schools does not automatically equal good, sound investments.

  12. #12
    Face-Man's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    London
    Posts
    577
    Thank Post
    11
    Thanked 58 Times in 40 Posts
    Rep Power
    70
    Quote Originally Posted by sparkeh View Post
    I can't say that I totally believe that to be true. Some schools would do a better job and some would wouldn't. I could show you number of schools where money is bably invested in a whole range of projects, for a whole number of reasons. Giving the money directly to the schools does not automatically equal good, sound investments.
    I agree a few schools I know have wasted thousands of pounds on kit nobody uses. Also the other problem with giving school the money direct is that there is no incentive to work together. While good schools do share practice and ideas there is still a reluctance to share staff or resources and genuinely raise educational achievement for all students. For example I heard of a school in Sheffield that had a wonderful solution and employed 7 technicians but want to opt out of BSF as they would be given an inferior solution. Fair enough you might think but why was that model not the one that was repeated across the other school. Why wasn't time and effort not put into an enterprise solution that replicates this best practise ? had this school been involved with the BSF planning process ?

    I suspect that in every area there is a local school that is getting lots of the challenges of BSF right without the money. BSF would be so much better if these schools were allowed to create cooperatives that meet educational output specification in a sustainable manner. Yes that may mean buying managed elements to the service from third parties and there would have to be performance indicators and somebody with whom the buck stopped. An ideal solution would be a non profit organisation outside the politics of a local authority that could take a ten year plan for educational ICT achievement as it goal and look to transform the way school is done so it is fit for the 21st Century.

  13. #13
    torledo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Posts
    2,928
    Thank Post
    168
    Thanked 155 Times in 126 Posts
    Rep Power
    48
    Quote Originally Posted by Face-Man View Post
    I agree a few schools I know have wasted thousands of pounds on kit nobody uses.
    can't a manged service provider make the same mistakes ?

    except their mistakes are multipled x number of times if they get it badly wrong as far as solution selection.

    I don't know, just asking the question. I think what you really need is to employ people at school level with the right experience in procurement and solutions delivery. Ofcourse it would probably mean upping the pay to attract this calibre, and possibly a bit of hand holding of the school senior mgmt during the recruitment process, but atleast these people are then on the payroll......which i've always preferred, direct job creation.

  14. #14
    torledo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Posts
    2,928
    Thank Post
    168
    Thanked 155 Times in 126 Posts
    Rep Power
    48
    Quote Originally Posted by Face-Man View Post
    . An ideal solution would be a non profit organisation outside the politics of a local authority that could take a ten year plan for educational ICT achievement as it goal and look to transform the way school is done so it is fit for the 21st Century.
    what ? a quango ?

  15. #15

    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    London
    Posts
    3,156
    Thank Post
    116
    Thanked 529 Times in 452 Posts
    Blog Entries
    2
    Rep Power
    124
    Quote Originally Posted by Face-Man View Post
    I suspect that in every area there is a local school that is getting lots of the challenges of BSF right without the money. BSF would be so much better if these schools were allowed to create cooperatives that meet educational output specification in a sustainable manner.
    I'm sure you're right. The scary thing is that I remember the early days of IT in schools and you're describing the kind of thing that was going on back then. Does anyone else remember ILECC (London), AUCBE (Hertfordshire) or any of the other LEA based groups that encouraged schools to work together to develop systems and resources?

    They were all scrapped back in the 1980s when central government decided it was better to let schools directly manage their own money. That meant there was no money available to fund LEA organisations and they all folded.

    I doubt we'll ever see this sort of working again; George Osborne was talking last week about how a Conservative government would save money in schools by paying private companies to provide even more services at a lower cost than employing people directly. This doesn't suggest that we'll see anything better in educational IT whoever's in power after the next election.

SHARE:
+ Post New Thread
Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Similar Threads

  1. Replies: 2
    Last Post: 11th August 2009, 11:08 AM
  2. "Print Limit Pro" or "Print Managent Plus"
    By burgemaster in forum Windows
    Replies: 24
    Last Post: 10th June 2009, 09:32 AM
  3. "Error 403" & "Moved to here" message
    By tech_guy in forum Windows
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 24th January 2008, 01:07 PM
  4. Proxy switch "proxy on" & " proxy off" software
    By GavRob in forum Network and Classroom Management
    Replies: 20
    Last Post: 30th July 2007, 10:05 PM
  5. Replies: 6
    Last Post: 28th September 2006, 07:06 PM

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •