Education-specialist VAR European Electronique is urging schools to collaborate in the wake of the demise of BECTA and the Building Schools for the Future (BSF) programme.
Chief executive Yolanta Gill (pictured) predicted more schools will buddy up as the academy model is rolled out more widely and government funding cuts bite.
Gill said: "Collaboration between schools has not yet become a common way of working. However, this is a model European Electronique is looking to promote in the near future. We believe this is the best way of helping our schools maximise their budgets, but will also create long-lasting partnerships that are good for the local community."
Gill said that schools will consider collaborating not only on central services delivered from the cloud, but also managed services.
"The stand-alone school may become a glaring anomaly in this progressive and changing landscape," she said. "Collaboration is an attractive tool and a different way to do the school's core job."
Gill's comments come in the wake of the British Educational Suppliers Association's (BESA) annual report on ICT in UK state schools. BESA found that just one per cent of secondary school ICT chiefs felt the government's schools ICT policy is "clear and on the right path".
Gill criticised BSF's one-size-fits-all model but said the initiative did provide a vehicle for reform and transformation. She also said that the demise of BECTA will force schools to seek guidance on ICT strategy elsewhere.
Gerry O'Keefe, managing director of distributor Micro Peripherals, said collaboration is now becoming more common as education budgets are squeezed.
"In the past, there has been a lot of ill-spent money where everyone has gone off and done unique work designing buildings," he said. "Over the last year, we have seen a lot of local authorities start to consolidate their spending and adopt a more consistent approach."
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