‘What Partnership Truly means’
When Garth Hill College, a secondary school serving the community of North Bracknell and surrounding areas, chose TSI World to be its ICT partner, it got a great deal more than just a supplier. With its particular blend of developing cost effective ICT services and educational focus, TSI World has been able to create a close working relationship with the College and its 1,500 plus students between the ages of 11 and 19. They have played an important role in supporting the college’s development, its mission of ‘A first class learning experience’, and being a part of the social and economic regeneration of the community that surrounds it.
About the school
There has been a Garth Hill school, in one form or another, on the current site since 1969. An extensive £40m redevelopment with a new state-of-the-art school and accompanying name change took place in September 2010.
One of Garth Hill’s key aims is to provide first class learning in 21st Century facilities. Following the move in 2010, five years later in September 2015 saw the opening of a £6.75 million post-16 education hub. Many of the students to first use the new sixth form centre were part of the first group of Year 7 pupils to start the school after the first redevelopment in 2010.
Garth Hill is a happy and vibrant place of learning. We are proud to be a genuinely comprehensive school and offer a wide and diverse range of excellent opportunities, inside and outside the classroom, that we believe enable our young people to develop exceptionally well both academically and personally.
Success has been built upon high standards and expectations. We expect pupils to take responsibility, to work as hard as staff, always try their best, and to reflect upon, and learn from failure and success
Keith Grainger, Principal
ICT is a big part of this ethos. ICT principles were woven into the fabric of the new building, and the seamless integration of technology was a vital part of what would be the 21st Century learning experience. ICT is embedded in every area of school life, and involves everyone – all teachers, staff, pupils and their parents.
With ICT such a crucial element, Garth Hill College needed a support service that they can rely on and have been working in partnership with TSI World since 2012. So close is the partnership, TSI World now share the ICT office with the resident Garth Hill College staff.
Key to the partnership between TSI World and Garth Hill College is TSI’s ability to listen and respond to the College’s needs. ICT in education is a fast moving environment and the ability to move and change to developing needs defines an effective ICT service.
At the core of the service are two highly trained and experienced technical engineers working full-time, including holidays, at Garth Hill College supplementing the current Garth Hill ICT Support Team. Further to this TSI World have also supplied an interim managerial consultancy and support on a three day per week basis to help manage and run the ICT function. Integrated within this team is a TSI World Principal Engineer on-site for three days per week for the more challenging development work.
With TSI World Garth Hill College don’t just receive maintenance and management. As part of the need to develop the infrastructure to cope with increasing demand and new technologies TSI World also provide ten days of specialist technical support per annum to include every aspect of Garth Hill ICT solution (to include both legacy and new infrastructure solutions).
There is a plethora of on-site support outside of school hours too. TSI World provide off-site ICT/network support including the TSI World 3rd line support helpdesk with governing service availability with a priority 1 hour response time. In fact Engineers continue to monitor the ICT infrastructure with remote diagnostics and support to include 24/7 remote network and management support. TSI Word management report back to the College SLT thanks to their ITIL/FITS compliant help desk facility with monthly report generation.
In addition to the more traditional ICT support and management services that TSI World provide, they are also on hand to support a number of student activities outside of normal hours. For example, assisting with the sound and lighting for school productions, ensuring audio and wireless capabilities for sports events and full technical support for the school’s Celebration of Success evening which is the pinnacle of the academic year
The College ICT Strategy
Such is the strength of the relationship between TSI World and Garth Hill College that TSI World have been asked to provide strategic ICT services as well as the infrastructure management. This includes the ownership and development of the ICT strategy and plan for the next 1, 3 and 5 years. It also includes strategic and operational support with ICT helpdesk setup, integration and reporting, strategic and operational support with the development of an ongoing staff training assessment and delivery of an ICT training plan to ICT support staff and teaching staff.
Thanks to TSI World Garth Hill College is reaping the benefit of cost effective ICT thanks to a new managed print solution, Wi-Fi replacement and development of the classroom AV strategy and curriculum consultancy and staff CPD.
The Impact of ICT at Garth Hill College
Since the TSI and Garth Hill College partnership has been in place ICT has developed and evolved in an ever changing environment. New systems implemented with seamless changeover.
From excellent Disaster Recovery support, to superb Desktop Support, available all hours of the day and when needed well into the night. Friendly, helpful supportive staff have joined the ever busy Information Services office and are on hand daily to lend support to college staff, students and the wider Garth Hill community
James Draycott, Deputy Network Manager