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COMPUTING & IT RESOURCES


Head Teachers: Make 2020 the Year of the Cloud Is it time for your school’s teaching and learning resources to go cloud-based?


manageable, giving them back a healthy work-life balance and freeing up time and pressure to focus on the teaching itself, as well as personal development. Instantaneous access to data, real-time


collaboration and a flexible working environment are often expected as standard for many businesses, so education should be no different.


Embracing the Cloud For decision makers within a school, academy or trust, 2020 is the perfect time to begin adopting cloud platforms, if they haven’t already done so. It’s a new year and a new decade, and the UK education sector is currently at a crucial point where effective management of enrolment, teaching resources and teacher workloads is needed to meet the demands of a rising number of students. While technology alone isn’t enough to solve all the issues faced by schools across the UK, it can be a good place to start. In order to help set up and maintain cloud-


E


veryday life is increasingly influenced by digital cloud technology. From teamworking and


learning applications to data storage and other innovations, cloud-based systems are quickly being adopted by more and more workplaces, offering improvements such as streamlined workflow, remote working, secure storage of vast amounts of data and lower costs. One of the sectors where this technology


should be more extensively implemented is education. While more than a third of universities already make extensive use of cloud computing, primary and secondary schools are lagging. However, schools would benefit greatly from the improvements afforded by the cloud in a number of key ways. Firstly, running a school’s computing through


the cloud is often cheaper than having servers onsite, and using cloud-based teaching resources can save on the cost and environmental impact of printing. Going serverless also allows for staff and


student data to be handled securely and ensure that there are back-up measures in place. AI and machine learning systems used by many cloud- based applications can help greatly with managing enrolment, class schedules and other administrative tasks. Nowadays, many students are also highly tech-


savvy, so for schools to provide them with access to online learning resources means that they can quickly access information and communicate effectively. Cloud computing tools also help to streamline


teachers’ workloads. Platforms such as Microsoft Classroom can be used to create lesson plans, assign homework or coursework and share digital learning resources. Working remotely through the cloud allows teachers to manage their workloads just as efficiently from the office as at home. Empowering teachers with this added freedom


and technological sophistication in their work and admin will undoubtedly make the job more


based systems, schools would benefit from seeking the help of a trusted IT service partner. Using an IT service provider can be important in managing the implementation of cloud platforms and providing training to the relevant staff. What a school gets with managed IT services


goes beyond simply setting up cloud technologies, however. Cantium Business Solutions, for example, have worked with over 800 education customers across the UK, creating bespoke IT solutions that have included management and maintenance of cloud-based systems, enhancing cyber-security and migrating of data to these new systems. All of this ensures that school management can


embed the cloud into their school’s IT infrastructure, comfortable in the knowledge that they are not only saving money, providing innovations for pupils and improving the teaching experience, but that the technologies used to achieve this are efficient, secure and supported by a trusted IT service partner. It’s time for schools to welcome the power of


the cloud, going into the next decade prepared for the ever-changing landscape of education and equipping their staff and students with the right digital tools to keep up with the times. This, importantly, will leave more time, budget and resources for the thing that matters most: education itself.


References: 1 https://schoolsweek.co.uk/teacher-retention-rates-are- worsening-and-7-other-school-workforce-findings/


2 https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-47936211 uwww.cantium.solutions


January 2020


www.education-today.co.uk 41


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