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How do you do....it? Thread, Budgets, funding and departmental IT resources in Technical; Question here re funding and budgets Could you let me know how the following works in your schools please? 1) ...
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    Budgets, funding and departmental IT resources

    Question here re funding and budgets

    Could you let me know how the following works in your schools please?

    1) Laptop for teachers laptop dies of old age. It was originally purchased with central (non school) funds. Who pays for the replacement? Department (because it will be a departmental resource) or central budget? I'd say department as its a departmental resource and with ownership of it they are more likely to look after it.

    2) Laptop for teachers gets damaged by a member of staff (left on car roof, trapped in car boot lid, you know the scenario). It was originally purchased with central funds. Who pays for the replacement? Department (because it will be a departmental resource) or central budget. I'd say department as its a departmental resource and with ownership of it they are more likely to look after it.

    Classroom trolley set purchased by a department for student use for that subject. Keys get removed from the keyboards. Similar trolley in another department with same laptops are all intact. Who pays for the repairs. I'd say the department. It snot their fault but it does highlight that they need to focus on classroom discipline.

    Shared IT suite /Staff room used by many departments needs PCs refreshing. Who pays for it? I'd say central funds as this is usually planned for centrally based on requests from many departments.

    In all these cases where I'm saying departments should pay one of the main reasons is that it gives me the ability to plan my own spending for the year. If we get departments pulling funding from my budget for replacements it impacts on the projects I've planned. The projects I've planned may have a greater benefit to the school than replacing 5 departmental laptops. We now longer have the comfort of a contingency fund to cover other departments replacements. I'm not saying that departments shouldn't be able to apply for funding in teh coming year for their own IT refresh I just need to know where I stand at the start of the year so that I can plan and know that my own projects will have the budget and the departments can plan and know that they have budget allocated for their own IT refresh.

    I'd be really interested to know how it works in your schools.

    Thanks

    Chris Johnson

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    This kind of thing is always difficult to get right. What needs to be decided centrally is what sort of resources should be available; you then decide how to fund that. For example, if it's necessary for each teacher to have a PC to use (or a laptop to use) then that needs to be paid for and it might as well be paid for centrally. You then have a policy which says that (eg) every 3 years the PC gets replaced with whatever is the standard PC/laptop. Same goes for printers, projectors, projector bulbs etc - if it's felt that teaching is improved by having a projector in each classroom then that should be a central resource.

    I think we've gone way past the stage where IT is new and special and is funded in bits and pieces - it has to become as central to funding as any other building resource, just like lightbulbs, heating and so on are central resources.

    Although pretty much everything here is centrally funded, it's not quite that simple - we charge for printing, for example, and this covers the cost of the hardware and paper and toner.

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    The plan is for ALL spending on IT to come through a central fund and be signed off centrally. That way we can manage the sustainability of any new IT purchases. However, I am not against departments paying into that budget annually for something special, but again it has to be sustainable.

    Laptops for Teachers, who knows what we are going to do with those, we have 90 odd and they all replacing in the next year. So if anyone can do me a deal on 30 laptops a year ad infinitum then drop me a pm

    Departments will not be expected to pay for replacements, their budget is far too small for that.

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    We have recently introduced a policy where departments who have been provided with curriculum laptops have to pay for keyboard/screen replacements where there has been obvious & deliberate damage to equipment.

    This has certainly focussed their minds upon taking a bit more care with the kit.

    As far as 'old-age' equipment failures are concerned central ICT budget picks up the bill. We had a stand-off for a while with a staff laptop that had a cracked screen that looked as if it had been caused by someone picking it up by the lid; eventually they came round to my way of thinking & paid for a new screen, I 'donated' the technician time to install it for free

    We also charge depts for lost laptop PSUs and duff/lost IWB pens.

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    1) Laptop for teachers laptop dies of old age. It was originally purchased with central (non school) funds.
    There's a central repair and replacement budget for laptops. And there's 4 new replacement laptops hidden away. If a dept bought it with their own funds then it's more of a grey area, but the general rule of thumb is "if they need it to teach, we'll make it happen". This does not apply to fantastically expensive kit (3d printer / cadcam laser) that the dept could only buy through external (specialist status/diploma) funding.
    2) Laptop for teachers gets damaged by a member of staff (left on car roof, trapped in car boot lid, you know the scenario). It was originally purchased with central funds.
    Central again, with appropriate bollocking. If they need it to deliver the lesson (really, not a "cupboard laptop"), then no matter how clumsy an oaf they are, if the money is available it gets spent or a frankenlaptop is created.
    Classroom trolley set purchased by a department for student use for that subject.
    Dept or the Dept of the teacher who allows the kids to do so (if shared). Depends if we can fix it in-house with parts from the laptop graveyard.
    Shared IT suite /Staff room used by many departments needs PCs refreshing.
    Central as part of the 4yr refresh program.

    What we have:

    ICT Central: which is "keep stuff running, minor (sub-£1k) upgrades, toner, etc".
    ICT Development: New Stuff. Expansion and major upgrades of existing stuff. Major projects are roughly budgeted, new departmental stuff they ask for in their budget comes form here. Any known projects (depts, my own) come from here.

    If departments know they'll want something (say laptops for a couple of teachers), they request it as an additional sum when budgets are done.

    We also have fantastically arcane sources of funding (specialist status x2, diploma x2, random in-house budgets that can be accessed depending on the phase of the moon) plus capital projects funds. There's also an "X" has exploded and costs loads to replace budget we've had to use (lightning strike).

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