IT in the next 3 years
As everyone fears the upcoming budget cuts I've been ask to develop a three year program for replacing/refurbishing our ICT equipment.
I know! How long is a piece of string? Does anyone have a crystal ball and can tell me what they think will be the biggest developments in ICT and biggest strain on our budgets over the next three years?
I don't know if three years ago I would have seen online reporting or vle's taking off in the way they have. Maybe.
What do you guys think?
All students having a netbook/laptop and the infrastructre to support it?
Home Learning (webcasts of lessons?)
Just some ideas to consider?
Best thing to do is to make sure your core infrastructure is flexible to change as much as possible. For us it meant moving to a virtualised server infrastructure and moving to a unified storage system.
We are looking into this as well and personally I think our main outlay over the next few years is going to be replacing hardware which hadn't been replaced for years before I arrived.
I agree with James about the laptops totally. Having invested in a good wireless network over the summer I think we should be alright, but if you haven't done it yet then look in to it.
I would also try and allow as much as possible for the best internet connection you can afford. If you have 1000 pupils at the moment and it's starting to strain just imagine what it will be like when new schools aren't built so you end up with 1500 pupils all trying to watch iPlayer and YouTube in HD ("Well it's much better at home and works fine there!" ).
Well, if your school is anything like ours, the biggest strain on our budgets over the next 3 years will be
- Projector replacements
- Smartboard replacements
- Projector lamps
Things I'd be looking to do in 3 years time? A yearly suite replacement of 35 machines, replacing printers that are costing us a fortune to run with ones that cost less to run, and deploying the remainder of our wireless LAN (we're doing it in phases).
New things that we may see? The introduction of more personal devices is a likely one.
I know that I'd want to start replacing switches in 3 years time, with Gbit to the desktop and 10Gbit fibres - so will also need to replace some of our older fibre runs (prorbably about 500m of it, with 30 or so terminations).
The thing is, your ICT plan should be tied in to the school development plan. What does that say?
Problem is, the op was about how to develop a plan which accounts for anticipated budget cuts, having laptops for students etc, although a nice idea requires massive budget increases, not budget cuts.
But we all know that bugdet cuts in IT will still mean more equipment - we just have to spend smarter.
Every kid needs an iPod Touch.
Itll be an IPhone with calls and text allowance next too!!
I don't see any way of planning for cuts. The only way I can think of classify things. So you have a NEED or IMPORTANT section & make sure it is used for things that are really desperate or needed to keep the status quo. Then a LIKE section, things you that would use to move forward or follow a plan that you have. Finally a BLUE SKY or FUTURE section for things that if there was money you would do to make things even better.
This way you have the stuff that really needs doing whatever else happens, you can compromise or debate the LIKE section if money is tight & you can be gracious & drop the future stuff if there isn't money to show you are willing to compromise. You also have a list of things for next year ready to be moved up into your plan section.
I see the biggest IT investment will be coming from the LA's and central government by way of home IT access development from various sources.
What better way than to get the little students to have access to learning from home then eventually all schooling to be accessed this way via VTLE's, it a governemnt plan to see cuts in the education system via closing of schools and teacher redundances which will pay for the internet access of all homes.
This is a key issue at the moment and financially it would take an awful strain off the governments budget deficit along with new schemes to save even more money in the NHS and other public services.
Mark my words it will happen eventually as this country becomes absolutely dependant on managed services from other countries to meet budgetry requirements even at the detriment of our childrens education and families wellbeing. ;) :) :)
Obviously this will happen in time but not over the next 3 years I might add.
TCO=total cost of ownership of needs to come in. Basically what HP say donning more with less.
Move all your applications to be web-browser based (not neccesarily running on servers away over the Internet, local servers are going to be faster, just have everything run via a web interface). Then, when Windows XP stops being supported, move all your workstations over to Linux machines that boot straight in to a web browser, similar to Google's new Chrome OS. That way you don't have to pay for any upgrades to Windows, you don't have to buy any more copies of MS Office and most of your hardware will carry on working just fine if you shove a bit more RAM in it.
Originally Posted by philjones2000
Do you have an existing 3 year plan? If so, it's a case of looking at that and saying things like "we'll make desktops last 4 years instead of 3 years", "won't replace TFT monitors at all unless they fail" and so on - this means that you saying what you can cut rather than someone coming in and saying "no spending on IT and, by the way, we need XXXX new doing as well"
How do you do video editing, music compositions or use peripherals such as scanners and CAD/CAM machinery?
Originally Posted by dhicks