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Budgets and Expenditure Thread, Becta Home Access Scheme - any concrete information yet? in School Administration; According to one of the presentations at the E2BN e-safety conference, the Becta Home Access scheme is due to be ...
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    Andie's Avatar
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    Becta Home Access Scheme - any concrete information yet?

    According to one of the presentations at the E2BN e-safety conference, the Becta Home Access scheme is due to be launched in January 2010. Have any schools had any concrete information from their LAs about how the scheme will actually be administered? That is, how eligible parents get hold of the forms, etc.? I have trawled the web (some links and attachements below) but can't find anything that gives us an actual date and an actual procedure. I would have thought it would be good for schools to be prepared prior to any national press announcements...?


    Becta Schools - Extending opportunities - Home access - How Home Access works
    Attached Files Attached Files

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    plexer's Avatar
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    Norfolk CC are sending a letter to every family that are eligible for free school meals. Application forms are not yet available however.

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    pooley's Avatar
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    Any info on Wlesh schools requirement if any?

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    garethedmondson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pooley View Post
    Any info on Wlesh schools requirement if any?
    We probably miss out as usual.

    GJE

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    meastaugh1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by garethedmondson View Post
    We probably miss out as usual.

    GJE

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    garethedmondson (17th December 2009)

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    russdev's Avatar
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    Right so firms have got vendor status and can supply equipment under the scheme. The firm has won the contract to run the home access project (Capita I believe).

    It then depends on LA some LAs are having nothing to do with as such apart from provide info to schools (as there is no money to pay LA staff) some LAs are more proactive.

    Start was delayed slightly at last point.. TO be fair schools shouldn't need to do anything as otherwise it could open a whole can of worms.

    Russ

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    sparkeh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by russdev View Post
    It then depends on LA some LAs are having nothing to do with as such apart from provide info to schools (as there is no money to pay LA staff) some LAs are more proactive.

    Start was delayed slightly at last point.. TO be fair schools shouldn't need to do anything as otherwise it could open a whole can of worms.

    Russ
    Interestingly this came up at a course run by a Becta advisor who actively discouraged schools and LAs from becoming too involved in this beyond helping parents apply.

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    Sylv3r's Avatar
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    The LA's that are running the schemes themselves - do they also support the machines - hardware / software issues, warranty repairs etc?

    And the opposite to the above - do the schools aggregation their own scheme are they responsible for the management and support of these devices?

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    plexer's Avatar
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    How the LA may support the scheme is going to be an individual decision for them. Some may have a recommended solution others may just be helping support parents in applying.

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    Sylv3r's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by plexer View Post
    How the LA may support the scheme is going to be an individual decision for them. Some may have a recommended solution others may just be helping support parents in applying.
    If thats the case, some (all) I imagine will recommend the schools look after them

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    Andie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sylv3r View Post
    The LA's that are running the schemes themselves - do they also support the machines - hardware / software issues, warranty repairs etc?

    And the opposite to the above - do the schools aggregation their own scheme are they responsible for the management and support of these devices?
    One thing we were told at E2BN conference was that schools are NOT responsible for service and support. Aggregating schools/LAs (those who choose to administer the scheme on behalf of parents) just act as purchasers and distributors of equipment. Support is obligation of suppliers and is part of the package purchased. There is only one year of internet and support included as far as I can tell.

    Thanks for everyone's input. Our head is concerned and reluctant to flag the scheme to parents when we don't know anything more concrete, and our LA are only now looking into the scheme. Also, at the E2BN conference, they mentioned that the initial pilot had run into funding problems (funds ran out). One of the questions was about what would happen in the roll out if the funds ran out, but there wasn't a definitive answer. So there are also concerns about missing out. I guess it will just be a case of keeping a constant eye on the Becta website.

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    sparkeh's Avatar
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    The line that we have decided to take is to make parents aware of the scheme (and thus take advantage of the inevitable boost in free school meal numbers ) and offer help to apply but make it clear it is not a school scheme and we are not responsible for the equipment.

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    Oldham and somewhere else were test councils to run this, we as a school in Oldham had no input into who got a PC/Laptop.

    It ran eariler this year, we had a few parents ring up for information, and ran a link on our website, and someone from the council came to parents evenings to sell it to the parents.

    We had leaflets in school, but other than that as a school we didn't have to do anything.

  15. 2 Thanks to mullet_man:

    Andie (18th December 2009), Sylv3r (18th December 2009)

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    Smile Becta Home Access Programme

    Hi Everyone,
    I'm from BLi Education, which is one of 6 companies authorised by Becta to supply Home Access kits, and I've just joined this forum so I thought I’d try to answer some of Andie’s (& others) questions. As you probably know, BLi Education is the home of TAG Learning, Sherston, SEMERC and Economatics Education.

    The Home Access Programme is officially being launched this week at the World Education Forum (by Gordon Brown) and at the BETT Show in London (by Diana Johnson). From that point onwards, anyone who thinks they might be eligible can call the hotline (run by Capita for Becta) to find out more. A good rule of thumb is families with children in KS2/ KS3 who are on free school meals should be eligible. Also, schools interested in aggregating orders on behalf of their parents have until the end of February to register with Becta, but must also be registered with the e-Learning Foundation.
    Just so that you have the facts, BLi Education is including over £570 worth of free curriculum software from TAG, Sherston & Economatics with each computer/laptop, and I think we are unique in this part. You can find out more about what we are offering at our Home Access Computers (just Google Home Access Computers or BLi Education) or by ringing 0800 258 5990,
    and parents and schools can contact the Home Access Grant Administration Service (HAGAS, run by Capita) at 0333 200 1004.

    Incidentally, the support and warranty will be provided by the suppliers, backed by the manufacturers, all machines come with a year's theft insurance, there is e-safety and anti-virus software installed, and Becta have provided a suite of software at no extra cost, which includes some assistive technology tools, such as screen magnifiers, text-to-speech, predictive text, spell-checkers etc. With the full package there is also one year's broadband connectivity provided as well.
    So it's a very well-specified package, and should be something that parents and chidren can use straight out of the box.
    For a school, there could be a lot of benefit in helping parents not only to fill in the forms correctly, but also to make the right choices in terms of the type of package to order.

    Hope this is helpful!

    Jonathan Thomson – BLi Education

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    sparkeh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JonathanT View Post
    For a school, there could be a lot of benefit in helping parents not only to fill in the forms correctly, but also to make the right choices in terms of the type of package to order.
    Interestingly a Becta consultant advised schools not to get involved at an LA meeting where this came up.

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