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BSF Thread, This I How I Imagined BSF And TUPE Might Have Worked... in United Kingdom (UK) Specific Forums; Roles: Ratbert: Network Manager Dogbert: BSF Contract Winner Pointy Haired Boss [PHB]: Headmaster Opinions?...
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    DaveP's Avatar
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    This I How I Imagined BSF And TUPE Might Have Worked...

    Roles:

    Ratbert: Network Manager
    Dogbert: BSF Contract Winner
    Pointy Haired Boss [PHB]: Headmaster

    Opinions?

  2. 2 Thanks to DaveP:

    mredmond (22nd July 2010), torledo (26th July 2010)

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    Disease's Avatar
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    Luckily now the Government have seen what a wast of money BSF is that senario will no longer happen.

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    torledo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Disease View Post
    Luckily now the Government have seen what a wast of money BSF is that senario will no longer happen.
    agreed. but we also seem to have a disproportionately high number of whingers, who are mourning the loss of BSF.

    i find it bizarre although not altogether suprising.....there must be a lot of people who've been convinced over the last 10 years that you really do need to pay three times the cost for stuff for it be of fair value.

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    Disease's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by torledo View Post
    agreed. but we also seem to have a disproportionately high number of whingers, who are mourning the loss of BSF.
    Most of them are teachers and SLT Members who fully believed that a shiny new building will improve grades and cover up the flaws in their teaching ability and management skills. I am sorry if this offends but it is true, there are a large amount of bad teachers in schools all over the UK who give a bad name to the few good ones. I look at them everyday.

    BSF was their way out, yes Mr Teacher the reason Jonny is unable to spell his name in year 11 is totally down to the leaky roof and bears no relation to your poor teaching practice.

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    Quote Originally Posted by torledo View Post
    i find it bizarre although not altogether suprising.....there must be a lot of people who've been convinced over the last 10 years that you really do need to pay three times the cost for stuff for it be of fair value.
    Which is why I still see outsourcing as much more likely to come in now that BSF has gone. Running IT as it is currently run in schools is wildly inefficient - you don't need highly skilled IT staff in most schools, you need people who can unjam printers and explain for the 99th time how you save your documents on the network!

    You need some skilled people but there's scope to share them between schools. I'm not suggesting that the way outsourcing was being done in BSF schools was right (I simply don't know) but I'm certain that you could save money by setting up companies that spread fewer but more skilled people across more schools.

  7. Thanks to srochford from:

    torledo (26th July 2010)

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    DaveP's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by srochford View Post
    ...You need some skilled people but there's scope to share them between schools. I'm not suggesting that the way outsourcing was being done in BSF schools was right (I simply don't know) but I'm certain that you could save money by setting up companies that spread fewer but more skilled people across more schools.
    I do not feel comfortable with the "solution" being presented in this way. This could easily be used as a device for shedding IT staff without consideration for the consequences [some schools have staff members that are happy with the IT staff currently in place and would not be happy to see those staff removed under these circumstances]

    While working in London I developed a good relationship with most of the schools I visited and they were not happy to see me leave. But this reply is not about me: Rather it is more about continuing to support teaching staff who are not always that confident with IT. This support, I feel, should be continuous using the same staff wherever possible. Why force support staff to leave [or feel that they must leave] for the sake of a one-fits-all solution? Remember how everyone reacted to BSF?

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    Quote Originally Posted by DaveP View Post
    Why force support staff to leave [or feel that they must leave] for the sake of a one-fits-all solution? Remember how everyone reacted to BSF?
    Don't want to make people leave at all - I just think it's unrealistic to say "BSF is scrapped, no-one needs to worry about job losses any more"

    We now have a government that doesn't seem to be saying "what should government do; how can we do it for best value" but "what can we cut from spending" and that approach will lead to job losses and will lead to poorer service.

    My ideal would be to have good people based in school who want to do IT support for end users; there would then be other people perhaps based in schools, perhaps elsewhere who do the more techy stuff.

    Read almost any "behind the read door" thread and you'll see that there are a lot of people on here who do not see the "IT support for end users" as being anything other than a distraction from "their job" They are quite possibly brilliant at doing the techy stutff so let's get them doing that and then get the people who are good at working with end users doing that. Result ought to be much better IT and could be at lower cost.

    Finally, the "remember how everyone reacted to BSF" - well, apart from some people on here, lots of people said "wow, new schools, new IT - that's wonderful".

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    I've said it before - BSF as of itself was a good thing, maybe poorly implemented but investing millions in building modern schools to replace crumbling property makes some sense. Outsourcing ICT as part of BSF never did, at least not to me. I agree theres a lot that can be achieved by sharing resources between schools, especially saving in ICT, but that can be done through local partnerships and doesn't need the ICT dept sold of to Inflexable Computer Services Inc.

    Were successive governments, especiall Labour for this, have gone wrong is too much interfering in daily school life. The Conservatives have got it right with their take on Acadamies and 'Free Schools', but why not just make every existing school an Acadamy and be done with it? What's the point in segragating schools further by keeping some state schools as they are, making other Acadamies and then introducing yet another type of school to directly compete with the first two?

    Just give schools the money they need and trust them to get on with the job! No need for competing 'Free School' or 'Acadamies' - just state schools that have the power to run their finances and staff as they see fit. Send Ofsted round with a big stick every so often and fire heads/governers/teachers that can't do their job properly.

    All this BSF, Free Schools, Acadamies is just wallpapering over the cracks of mad management and local government/central government interfering.

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    Quote Originally Posted by srochford View Post
    ...We now have a government that doesn't seem to be saying "what should government do; how can we do it for best value" but "what can we cut from spending" and that approach will lead to job losses and will lead to poorer service.
    Does anyone here actually believe what Governments [of any colour] say at times of economic stress?

    Actually I don't think that the current Government is honest enough to say "what can we cut from spending" and let the public understand what there is behind a statement of that sort.

    Quote Originally Posted by srochford View Post
    ...there are a lot of people on here who do not see the "IT support for end users" as being anything other than a distraction from "their job" ...
    I would say that there is little point being in the role that I am in if I am not going to support my end users. There are often annoyances that prevent me from progressing with my day [I achieved nothing today due to several interruptions and technical problems] However making sure that the network is running and that the users are able to logon tomorrow is my priority. Else why turn up to work?

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    Don't forget there will be around 700-800 schools that have been rebuilt by the time the BSF program eventually winds up in a couple of years. Meanwhile I am sure that the Government will pay close scrutiny to what happens to results and the running costs in those schools, including outsourced ICT costs.

    The Tories gave us PFI in the first place, New Labour embraced it as zealots. The Govt are committed to reducing the public sector so it stands to reason that they will be sympathetic to anything that supports their goals. I don't think school ICT outsourcing is dead & buried yet, especially where LAs have already invested in infrastructure intended to support a lot more schools. When the education cuts start to bite & the LAs are feeling the squeeze ICT outsourcing could be back on the agenda, not only for schools.

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    We now have a government that doesn't seem to be saying "what should government do; how can we do it for best value"
    Plus ca change... whatver they said, we never had a gov that *did* that e.g. BSF/PFI was/is considerably more expensive (for the sake of that invisibility fiddle) than just borrowing the money and building the school, surely?

    there are a lot of people on here who do not see the "IT support for end users" as being anything other than a distraction from "their job" They are quite possibly brilliant at doing the techy stutff so let's get them doing that and then get the people who are good at working with end users doing that. Result ought to be much better IT and could be at lower cost.
    Problem: I work in the world you're imagining and it's pyramid shaped... if you need more than a handful of Brilliant Creatures[tm] up there, then you've done it all wrong (or they're not nearly as brilliant as you think).

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    Quote Originally Posted by PiqueABoo View Post
    Problem: I work in the world you're imagining and it's pyramid shaped... if you need more than a handful of Brilliant Creatures[tm] up there, then you've done it all wrong (or they're not nearly as brilliant as you think).
    solution: the wannabe brilliant creatures no longer wanting to be burdened with the stresses of dealing with people not so empathetic to their situation [or not as appreciative of their behind the scenes technical brilliance] need to either learn those customer interaction skills/focus on end user support or find themselves another niche. Easier said than done ofcourse, but there's little justification in my view to continue on for very much longer with the look-how-many-hats-i-can-wear approach to ICT support in schools. Ok, the managed service may not turn out to be the cost saver, but it could at the very least lift some weight off some shoulders.

    Just a brief look at some of the threads on 'behind the door' and i do wonder why all parties tolerate the current approach.

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    Quote Originally Posted by srochford View Post
    Which is why I still see outsourcing as much more likely to come in now that BSF has gone. Running IT as it is currently run in schools is wildly inefficient - you don't need highly skilled IT staff in most schools, you need people who can unjam printers and explain for the 99th time how you save your documents on the network!

    You need some skilled people but there's scope to share them between schools. I'm not suggesting that the way outsourcing was being done in BSF schools was right (I simply don't know) but I'm certain that you could save money by setting up companies that spread fewer but more skilled people across more schools.
    I agree totally. It would make more sense for highly skilled folk to be spread over a consortium of schools. The problem is most schools are unique in the way they operate, with unique demands and needs. This shouldn't be a problem but doesn't bode well for skilled folk to be spread unless outsourcing is taken on at which point the school looses aspects of control. You could also argue that many SME's have an I.T. department exclusive to them so why do schools I.T. need a consortium.

    Things could easily be managed remotely or within one school with satellite offices in the others. This in a way then provides a career structure / learning progression for I.T. staff / sharing of knowledge / resources within schools. In an ideal world schools should gang together to do this (LEA assistance would be to bureaucratic). To make more money for the big schools primary's could be taken on / invited to join, therefore providing greater scope for career progression / learning etc + primary's get better use of I.T. Of course tho allot of people are scared of change and its easier said than done.
    Last edited by Jiser; 11th August 2010 at 09:16 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by torledo View Post
    solution: the wannabe brilliant creatures no longer wanting to be burdened with the stresses of dealing with people not so empathetic to their situation [or not as appreciative of their behind the scenes technical brilliance] need to either learn those customer interaction skills/focus on end user support or find themselves another niche. Easier said than done ofcourse, but there's little justification in my view to continue on for very much longer with the look-how-many-hats-i-can-wear approach to ICT support in schools. Ok, the managed service may not turn out to be the cost saver, but it could at the very least lift some weight off some shoulders.

    Just a brief look at some of the threads on 'behind the door' and i do wonder why all parties tolerate the current approach.
    Behind the Red Door is one of the few places any school IT support staff have to let off steam and shouldn't be taken as meaning we are no good at the customer service side of things, it's just a 'pressure valve'. In any job, even high skilled customer service people, they will have an outlet to vent their frustrations, whether to colleagues, friends and family or online, it doesn't make them bad at their job, in fact quite the opposite.

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