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BSF Thread, Hull BSF goes to RM (Research Machines) in United Kingdom (UK) Specific Forums; Originally Posted by Face-Man None of the money (for the MSP) is made on stuff it is all made on ...
  1. #31

    broc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Face-Man View Post
    None of the money (for the MSP) is made on stuff it is all made on CPD and cutting wages.
    They do make money from work for the client that is/was not part of the original contract too, lots of it.

    That's why outsourcing suppliers like to keep the contracts as vague as possible, and why they employ contract managers to minimise cost & maximise revenue after the contract starts.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Andycat View Post
    In my case it's ACTUAL Music, not IT and music. as in Recording it, playing it and conducting it! Sorry if there's confusion.

    So you think making music in the school choir etc was part of your Strategic IT role and is the reason you are not being TUPE'd? I repeat - GET REAL - it's because your core ICT related parts of your role are not needed by the managed services provider and not that the school desperately needs you as some form of Simon Cowell!

    If you want to be a music/drama teacher then go and do the training, get qualified and apply for a job but don't think because you work in a school and can sing Westside Story you are part of the teaching team.

    Let's face it, BSF schools do not need some form of ICT informed client once the schools are built - that's what the Head and his teachers should be. They employ the managed services provider to be the expert and so long as they adhere to the contract (which again they largely self monitor and report) the LA and school doesn't interfere. If a school decides to create such a post they have to fund it themselves and with increasing pressure on school budgets this isn't likely to be a long term solution.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ROBOCOP View Post
    So you think making music in the school choir etc was part of your Strategic IT role and is the reason you are not being TUPE'd? I repeat - GET REAL - it's because your core ICT related parts of your role are not needed by the managed services provider and not that the school desperately needs you as some form of Simon Cowell!

    If you want to be a music/drama teacher then go and do the training, get qualified and apply for a job but don't think because you work in a school and can sing Westside Story you are part of the teaching team.
    50 % of my role is just that, music and theatre, hence the non TUPE. Schools choice.

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    Face-Man's Avatar
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    I know of an LA that has two schools one has not nominated any staff to be TUPEd as they want to retain them and are changing the JD as appropriate another that has nominated 10 members of staff (half of whom have limited ICT in their jobs) because they don't want to be responsible for them with the way budgets are getting cut (though the possible MSP has turned these back to the school and said think again). So alot does boil down to the heads/SLT thinking.
    I've also heard about a school who six months before the MSP took they upped the wages of the network manager think that they would only have to pay it for six months only for the MSP to hand them a bill for the difference between the two each month because when they had done the calculation for the offer to the school the salary was x so x was in the contract not x+y.

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    Yes, every BSF is different, as is every School and every Borough's approach.

    Apparently there are 2 schools in our Boroughs not taking BSF IT, but ARE part of the project.

  6. #36

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    Quote Originally Posted by ROBOCOP View Post
    Let's face it, BSF schools do not need some form of ICT informed client once the schools are built - that's what the Head and his teachers should be. They employ the managed services provider to be the expert and so long as they adhere to the contract (which again they largely self monitor and report) the LA and school doesn't interfere. If a school decides to create such a post they have to fund it themselves and with increasing pressure on school budgets this isn't likely to be a long term solution.
    I would be willing to speculate that at some point schools will realise they still need someone to assist SLT with ICT advice in areas such as

    Managing their MSP contract (& not rely upon the LA)

    Advising the Leadership team about curriculum related ICT matters

    Evaluating & recommending the adoption of emerging technologies that are relevant to their school

    All of these areas have potential budget impacts, so can schools afford not to take them seriously?

    Let me ask the question; Would your school be happy to delegate these responsibilities to the LA, the MSP, or any of the hordes of consultants that circle overhead?

    In my experience, commercial clients of outsourcing companies certainly take these responsibilites seriously and employ contract managers and their own ICT 'advisors' to make sure they are not having the wool pulled over their eyes.

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    Quote Originally Posted by broc View Post
    I would be willing to speculate that at some point schools will realise they still need someone to assist SLT with ICT advice in areas such as

    Managing their MSP contract (& not rely upon the LA)

    Advising the Leadership team about curriculum related ICT matters

    Evaluating & recommending the adoption of emerging technologies that are relevant to their school

    All of these areas have potential budget impacts, so can schools afford not to take them seriously?

    Let me ask the question; Would your school be happy to delegate these responsibilities to the LA, the MSP, or any of the hordes of consultants that circle overhead?

    In my experience, commercial clients of outsourcing companies certainly take these responsibilites seriously and employ contract managers and their own ICT 'advisors' to make sure they are not having the wool pulled over their eyes.
    Most MSP "offer" these rolls as part of the service as they are also bidding to "transform" teaching using ICT by providing CPD programs. This is where BSF is different from a managed service procurement undertaken in the past. With BSF the ICT should work so that the educational ICT expert can put their energy into change management and getting the kit used well. If they are in the contract at the begining with targets ie x amount of staff trained and using ict to teach then the schools know how much it cost from day one. The problem is that budgets are likely to be cut and so schools may find they are paying for a service they can no longer afford.

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    Quote Originally Posted by broc View Post
    I would be willing to speculate that at some point schools will realise they still need someone to assist SLT with ICT advice in areas such as

    Managing their MSP contract (& not rely upon the LA)

    Advising the Leadership team about curriculum related ICT matters

    Evaluating & recommending the adoption of emerging technologies that are relevant to their school

    All of these areas have potential budget impacts, so can schools afford not to take them seriously?

    Let me ask the question; Would your school be happy to delegate these responsibilities to the LA, the MSP, or any of the hordes of consultants that circle overhead?

    In my experience, commercial clients of outsourcing companies certainly take these responsibilites seriously and employ contract managers and their own ICT 'advisors' to make sure they are not having the wool pulled over their eyes.
    It's not the schools ICT contract - the contract is between the Managed Service Provider and the LA with a lesser 'sub-agreement' between the LA and schools which doesn't really have any contractual weight but outlines how each party relates to the other, lines of communication, joint responsibiities and the suchlike. Schools need to realise that if ICT is installed and managed under BSF it is no longer theirs - they are just 'users'. If they choose to retain a load of ex-ICT staff and change their JDs then they need to justify this to the LA (Children and Young People's Services) otherwise they won't get this allowed for in their annual budget and the allowance they used to have to pay them when they did ICT will now be gone and paid direct by the LA to the BSF provider as part of their Unitary Payment.

    I know I rub people up here the wrong way but believe me I know an awful lot about this and when I say people need to wake up I mean it most sincerely - some of you have been locked in your server rooms too long and coming out with stuff like 'the head will look after me' or 'I didn't take this job to be forced to work to dealines or not do nice little hobbies with the kiddies' shows an appaling lack of reality.

    Schools cannot opt out of ICT under BSF unless they either turn into D&B Academies or the LA and PfS decide to not go down the traditional LEP procurement route and all schools are procured under NAF which means ICT and FM doesn't have to be included (but still could).

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    We are in the process of starting to get ready for our induction into the BSF programme. There seems to be an awful lot of waffle and very little fact in these BSF ICT threads.

    How many schools have done a 5 year cost analysis of the BSF programme? To include staffing (including staff that are needed to be employed to do the work the MSP can not or will not!), the MANY exclusions from the contract etc etc. What is the value of your current estate (how much of that estate, training and development has just been thrown away?)

    I have said on other BSF threads that many staff outsourcing deals are often related to reducing the costs of pensions schemes not about providing better value for money services!

    There are limited examples of schools opting out of BSF and still getting money, and there some examples of schools refusing BSF funding. From what I can see there are possibly good reasons for schools with mature well developed ICT systems to refuse the funding!

    At my own school the head and governors are getting very involved in the whole BSF process and are asking all affected parties(PfS, LA and school staff) to provide them with information on the costs and benefits of the BSF programme.

    Anyone care to share facts about BSF. I am in process of pulling together a charging/cost model for BSF and would be interested to get input from other schools.

  10. #40

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    Quote Originally Posted by ROBOCOP View Post
    If they choose to retain a load of ex-ICT staff and change their JDs then they need to justify this to the LA (Children and Young People's Services) otherwise they won't get this allowed for in their annual budget and the allowance they used to have to pay them when they did ICT will now be gone and paid direct by the LA to the BSF provider as part of their Unitary Payment.
    School budgets are based upon the number of students on roll, weighted by social & economic factors; staffing levels, roles & responsibilities are decided by the school leadership team & governing body. If a school chooses to employ someone with responsibility for ICT it is up to them...... they don't need to justify this to LAs.

    In the 14 years I spent as a school governor I do not recall any funding ever being provided by the LA for ICT support.... apart from the money for MIS the LA handed over to the school & immediately demanded back as a levy for their central Education IT support service.....

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    Quote Originally Posted by broc View Post
    In the 14 years I spent as a school governor I do not recall any funding ever being provided by the LA for ICT support.... apart from the money for MIS the LA handed over to the school & immediately demanded back as a levy for their central Education IT support service.....
    Though not directly from the local authority alot of ICT money does "pass through" their hands ie: Harnessing Technology grant. Becta Local authorities - Funding - Harnessing Technology Grant - Harnessing Technology funding 2010-2011 guidance for local authorities

    It is up to local authorities to determine the basis by which the Harnessing Technology grant is allocated to individual schools. This arrangement is intended to give local authorities flexibility to use funding to target local priorities. At its most straightforward, distribution can occur on a per pupil basis. However, there may be benefits to adopting a more strategic approach in which a local authority targets schools facing particular challenges or circumstances to receive a greater proportion of funding.
    School governors do have the say on how their school is run and who is employed and whether to sign up for BSF or not (quite rightfully too). But Local authorities do have a responsibility to account for how tax payers money is spent in their authority and have been known to claw back underspend from schools and audit their accounts.

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    Quote Originally Posted by monkeyx View Post
    How many schools have done a 5 year cost analysis of the BSF programme? To include staffing (including staff that are needed to be employed to do the work the MSP can not or will not!), the MANY exclusions from the contract etc etc. What is the value of your current estate (how much of that estate, training and development has just been thrown away?)
    My school was similarly concerned and in order to convince schools the LA undertook a extensive TCO to evaluate whether BSF represents value for money. It came out that the schools on average (some invest more than others) spent more per pupil on ICT than was proposed by the BSF process and so would save a considerable amount of money. However it has to be remembered there is a large capital investment at the beginning from PFS that schools would not get otherwise and you are not really comparing like for like but I would expect all LA entering into BSF to do this as a minimum.

    Legacy equipment and training should also be given a value (replacing perfectly good switches just because they are not cisco is one example) in this process, though as we all know it is cheaper often to replace a printer than keep maintaining the toner for it. This is why I made sure I was involved as soon as possible in the process so we were not paying for things we didn't need.

  13. #43

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    Quote Originally Posted by Face-Man View Post
    Though not directly from the local authority alot of ICT money does "pass through" their hands ie: Harnessing Technology grant. Becta Local authorities - Funding - Harnessing Technology Grant - Harnessing Technology funding 2010-2011 guidance for local authorities



    School governors do have the say on how their school is run and who is employed and whether to sign up for BSF or not (quite rightfully too). But Local authorities do have a responsibility to account for how tax payers money is spent in their authority and have been known to claw back underspend from schools and audit their accounts.
    I agree with you on both points.... but the school is ultimately responsible for how it chooses to spend things like harnessing technology grants. If a grant is 'ring-fenced' for capital expenditure (as is often the case) the school can choose to set aside money it might have used for technology to pay for staff wages..... its all a matter of balancing the budget by moving money between 'pots'. In my experience School financial managers are quite adept at moving money around while staying within the rules

    The underspend issue is a different matter; one the one hand schools are expected to fund major capital repairs but without being seen to be holding a 'surplus'. This whole 'surplus' issue arose years ago when someone asked the Govt how much money were schools stashing away without bothering to ask why..... the issue became very political, which is why there is an arbitrary 5% cap on carry-over.

    If the school can demonstrate why they are building a surplus they may be allowed to keep it; at the school where I was a governor, we invested income from the sports facilities for several years running in order to accumulate enough money to pay to resurface an all-weather pitch... this was a condition placed upon us by Sports England, The FA, and a number of bodies who gave the school a grant to build the all-weather pitch in the first place.

    School accounts are regularly audited, and rightly so as it is public money they are spending. A school should always be able to justify why money is spent...... but in my experience as a governor (and a school employee) I have yet to come across any audit which has questioned the staffing levels or roles & responsibilities of those employed by the school. For that matter, I don't remember Ofsted questioning this either.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Face-Man View Post
    My school was similarly concerned and in order to convince schools the LA undertook a extensive TCO to evaluate whether BSF represents value for money. It came out that the schools on average (some invest more than others) spent more per pupil on ICT than was proposed by the BSF process and so would save a considerable amount of money. However it has to be remembered there is a large capital investment at the beginning from PFS that schools would not get otherwise and you are not really comparing like for like but I would expect all LA entering into BSF to do this as a minimum.

    Legacy equipment and training should also be given a value (replacing perfectly good switches just because they are not cisco is one example) in this process, though as we all know it is cheaper often to replace a printer than keep maintaining the toner for it. This is why I made sure I was involved as soon as possible in the process so we were not paying for things we didn't need.
    Would you care to share the figures for how you worked this out? ie Fact not waffle! If public money was spent, then hopefully there will be no problem with this document being reporoduced on a public forum.

    After the LA top slice a BIG percentage of the money (I am not quoting our own figures just for now because it is forming the basis of an APBC and I do not want to share the figures publically), our LA is junking existing MIS development, VLE Development even if the host school offers a higher functional level, than their replacement system! A large sum of money is given up front, but it taken back via a 5 year support charge and the need to replace lots of perfectly good equipment, software and services.

    I think that a lot of schools could have got better value for money by keeping their existing system and using some extra money to further develop their own systems! Where is the freedom to choose and innovate?

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    our LA is junking existing MIS development, VLE Development even if the host school offers a higher functional level, than their replacement system!
    This enforced mediocrity idea is pathetic. Why not just leave schools that are ahead of the curve and help failing schools, the idea of forcing one bland idea upon everyone is a complete innovation killer.

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