UK schools to save £840m with new IT programme

School IT upgrade will save millions

A school and local authority consortium has launched a new IT programme which will save UK schools £840 million (US$1.4 billion, AU$1.5 billion) over the next three years.

The group, London Grid for Learning (LGfL), unveiled TRUSTnet, a digital content and services package powered by Virgin Media Business, which will offer a more efficient IT experience to schools.

The consortium secured a contract worth £1 billion (US$1.7 billion, AU$1.8 billion), which will run until 2028. 23,500 schools are set to benefit from the initiative.

The programme has already saved London schools £100 million (US$170 million, AU$180 million) over the past three years, and is set to save another $840 million across the UK over the next three.

IT bundle

The savings are made by bundling IT infrastructure, services and content all into a single cost-effective package.

The bundle includes high-speed broadband, security systems, and learning resources, including cloud-based teaching and video conference parents' days.

"When we established the London Grid for Learning over ten years ago, we couldn't have imagined the impact it would have in enhancing education provision in the capital region – or that we would now be making these benefits available to every school in the country," said Brian Durrant, CEO of the London Grid for Learning Trust.

"TRUSTnet creates the potential for the impact of LGfL to be felt in classrooms across the nation – not only in the services it delivers now, but by supporting innovation in schools' ICT and attainment for learners for years to come."