innovit education

IT’s the ‘back to school blues’

Rising numbers of teachers will suffer the 'back to school blues’ when they return from their six weeks’ holiday to start a new academic year this September.

But it’s not the workload, endless paperwork or the thought of going back into classrooms full of noisy pupils that fills teachers with dread – it’s whether the school’s IT system is going to work.

Thousands of teachers fear they will not be able to teach the lessons they have planned or retrieve vital information necessary to do their jobs properly because work carried out on their school’s IT over the summer holiday has overrun or made the problems worse.

That’s the view of a Birmingham IT firm Innovit whose managing director, Andy Dent, has likened the situation to the chaos caused on the railways over the New Year when overrunning engineering works brought trains to a standstill and millions of commuters were left stranded.

He said that the six week period is the only time in the school calendar where they can schedule significant work to be carried out on their IT infrastructure and in an increasing number of cases the work overruns or causes more problems than it was originally meant to rectify.

“Each year the phenomenon becomes more pronounced as more schools come a cropper – particularly because the work they are doing on their systems is becoming more complex,” he said.
“Simple maintenance is relatively straightforward but once schools get into the areas of upgrades or installing new software or hardware that’s when the potential pitfalls start to open up.

“If a school’s IT system does not work properly and efficiently it can have a detrimental effect on what the teachers are trying to deliver in classrooms. And even more importantly, schools won’t get another significant opportunity to resolve the problems until next summer.

“And this stress on teaching staff in particular is not to be underestimated as we are hearing growing anecdotal evidence that IT is the biggest contributor to the back to school blues.”

Innovit, which is rapidly becoming one of the UK’s leading independent IT support companies for the education sector, is gearing itself up for the annual September spike in distress calls from schools who need help when their IT goes into meltdown.

“There’s no doubt that September is the single busiest month in terms of calls from schools who have been recommended to us,” added Dent.

“We are able to help schools take temporary measures to resolve the most pressing issues in the short-term. But where we can add real value is working with schools to plan projects so they do run to time and make the improvements that allow a school's system to become faster, more robust and more reliable.”

 

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