The end of UK Local Authority school networks
By: Richard Moore
In the UK, Local Authorities (LA’s) have been responsible for providing schools with fast, safe internet connectivity for the past 20 years. However, in 2000 the Academy program allowed schools to take control of their own finances and to operate as independent businesses funded by central government.
Many of the secondary academies found that they could procure connectivity more cheaply on the open market – and also take control of their own web filtering rather that suffer one size fits all policies. By January 2015, over 60% of them had already converted according to data from the DfE.
Ofsted figures report that of the 31,000 schools in the UK more than 17,000 are primary schools. Many of these primary schools have much simpler connectivity needs and no onsite technical staff. These are the schools that have been left clinging to their local authority networks, and less than 15% had converted to academy status by January 2015.
However, all that changed yesterday in the 2016 budget which stated that by 2020 all schools in the UK must have converted to academy status; LA’s will no longer be responsible for education. This is going to be a major headache for primary school head teachers.
Primary schools have always struggled to justify the cost and complexity of typical appliance based web filtering products, meaning that they were stuck with the LA network. Not any more!
With zero onsite hardware and a very simple, but effective web based control panel, Securly has become the web filter of choice for a growing number of UK primary schools. With pricing starting at less than £400 per year including unlimited support, it is also incredibly cost effective.
With features such as a unique parent portal, SSL filtering for search and social media, intelligent bullying detection, and support for any device you can be sure you have leading protection in place.
Securly offers free unlimited evaluations, and will partner with you to help transition you from the LA network to your own as you make the journey toward academy status.
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