In an ever challenging financial climate, it can be difficult for Multi-Academy Trusts to both implement and maintain an effective security solution that not only helps standardise online safety policies but also accommodates growth.

 

With the government driving for increased collaboration between multiple academy groups, trusts are finding that one of their most considerable challenges is the blend of different IT systems across multiple sites. It’s not uncommon for schools to be at different phases when it comes to technology. Some schools can be ahead of the curve, implementing innovative technological solutions and advanced infrastructures, whilst others find it more difficult to advance with the restrictions imposed by their old wireless network systems.

 

As UK legislation such as the Department for Education (DfE) Keeping Children Safe in Education and the Prevent Duty remains at the forefront of every safeguarding agenda, Governors and Proprietors must ensure they choose the correct solutions to adhere to the government’s expectations regarding online safety, filtering and monitoring. According to the guidance it is now essential for Multi-Academy Trusts to implement and maintain appropriate levels of both filtering and monitoring, in order to fulfill their duty of care and safeguard both staff and students against any harmful content and online threats.

 

Effective economies of scale

In a recent survey conducted by the Department for Education, it was found that 82% of MATs feel that the creation of new opportunities to collaborate contributes to the decision of their schools becoming academies, with 4 in 10 MATs believing that this was the main reason for their schools converting.

Bringing together technicians and network managers at different levels of expertise and with varying core values can ensure that a clear path is made to allow for collaboration of problem solving, innovative ideas and an overall unified approach of standardisation.

 

For all staff members that are involved in this transition, it is crucial that everyone has mutual understanding and is collectively working towards a consolidated goal. Multi-Academy Trusts ultimately have the obligation to work effectively and collaboratively in order to create, implement and maintain an IT infrastructure across the trust as a whole, which is able to leverage economies of scale and provide consistency.

 

Advance your online safety provision

Smoothwall understand that each Multi-Academy Trust has vastly different needs and requirements. Our product range is designed to not only meet, but exceed these complex requirements for both single and Multi-Academy Trusts. As a truly scalable solution, Smoothwall offers a multitude of flexible deployment options, enabling MATs to manage systems centrally, decentrally or utilise a combination of the two, providing a completely customised solution.

 

From Smoothwall’s unique Safeguarding Suite that is designed to provide effective provisioning of safeguarding and reporting in Education environments, to our advanced monitoring solution Visigo. Smoothwall provides the cost effective, flexible tools that you require to ensure that you not only meet, but exceed Ofsted requirements and DfE legislation.

 

For more information or to discuss your options in further detail, request to speak with Stone’s MATS Specialists today.