Access to digital education: Providing students in Northern Ireland with the skills and opportunities for a brighter future

Capita Education Cloud is providing a secure ICT environment for The Education Network for Northern Ireland Schools (ENNI), an innovative education technology service available to all grant-aided schools. C2k oversees delivery of the service as part of the Northern Ireland Education Authority.

Providing opportunities to succeed

Our ICT services provide schools with the flexibility, innovations and tools they need to access online and traditional learning resources. With 1,060 schools, more than 300,000 pupils and 50,000 teachers benefitting from the service, Northern Ireland schools are able to pioneer edtech solutions in teaching and learning by equipping young people with the digital skills to succeed.

Central to the solution is the Capita Education Cloud, which integrates public and private cloud services with local school-based resources, providing a secure ICT environment for every pupil and teacher in primary, post-primary, special education needs schools and EOTAS centres.

The proven power of managed IT services

Locally based delivery teams monitor, manage and support the ICT service and school ICT infrastructure, from system and network monitoring to operations management, foreseeing issues and proactively resolving them to ensure minimal disruption to the teaching and learning environment. A team of region-based field engineers assist schools with a range of ICT queries, including hardware break-fixing and project support, if on-site support is required.

Reflecting on value of managed services, Corinne Latham, Principal of Seaview Primary School, Belfast, remarks: “Teachers are busy people, their core function should be to focus on teaching and learning not fixing hardware. In addition to the C2k managed service we have a technician who supports Seaview PS on a regular basis. It allows the ICT coordinator to focus on leading the ICT curriculum and have an informed expert coming into school to assist figuring out some of the problems we encounter and finding positive solutions that don’t cost the earth.”

My-School: Access to personalised learning

Innovation in education has the potential to transform students’ lives, which is why we have introduced leading-edge digital solutions, advanced technology and collaboration platforms on which to innovate together. A core element of the cloud service is Capita’s My-School, a web-based platform that delivers personalised learning and single-sign on to all school-based services, applications and systems. Key features include:

  • customisable interfaces for all ages and abilities;
  • Office 365 and G Suite productivity tools;
  • Newsdesk and Seomra Nuachta: Capita’s digital news reporting platform;
  • media library and learning exchange: Offering service user guides and resources in video and written format; and
  • access to a wide range of educational applications.

Speaking about their school’s experience, Michelle Clancy, Assistant Principal of
St Patrick’s Grammar School, Downpatrick, comments: “The use of G Suite has raised the bar in learning and teaching at St Patrick’s.The G Suite tools have helped our students to succeed and achieve through increased communication, collaboration and active learning, inside and outside the classroom. The teaching staff and students are very excited about our next steps with Google and extending the use of Chromebooks into other lessons.”

Safe, smart and secure online environments

In parallel, we also provide a unique, secure wireless solution for schools, which delivers the highest level of online safety to pupils and teaching staff, while providing the freedom to access learning and appropriate online resources. We manage the security software on more than 80,000 devices and undertake school network scans daily, protecting against vulnerabilities and cyber exposures. With education email and web filtering in place and a dedicated team monitoring internet usage, school leaders are assured that all users are protected when using the school network.

The wireless solution has enabled schools to use a range of devices on the C2k network, from tablets, laptops and desktop PCs to connecting interactive panels and Macs to facilitate engaging and interactive lessons. This also provides schools with the flexibility to implement mobile and BYOD strategies. This year we have supported the roll out of 21,000 Microsoft Surface Pro 7+ laptops to teachers in the region supporting innovative teaching, this program has been supported by a new professional learning programme to enable the teachers to build on their skills and access additional supports aligned to their personal learning and career preferences, while providing essential education software to best support the education experience for children and young people.

Teachers learning how to use their new Microsoft Surface Pro 7+ devices.

Digital learning is more about people than technology

We focus on adding value and ensuring that educators have access to advanced tools and technology to amplify their teaching and learning strategies. Annually, alongside C2k, we host an ICT Excellence Awards programme that assesses how the innovative use of technology has transformed teaching and learning and how it has improved educational outcomes for pupils and staff. In addition, we meet with Northern Ireland education sector stakeholders and schools regularly through an innovation forum, to discuss future developments for schools.

Teachers Capita and EANI presents school leaders with their awards at the ICT Excellence Awards 2021.

A strong successful future for Northern Ireland

We are committed to delivering lifelong learning pathways to level-up education in Northern Ireland. Our service continually offers leading learning and teaching opportunities to schools across the country.

T: 077 9204 5280

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