Connect the Classroom

What is Connect the Classroom?

Connect The Classroom is a fully-funded pilot initiative created by the Department for Education (DfE) which is focused on upgrading wireless infrastructure in hundreds of schools across the UK. Eligible schools will be contacted directly by the DfE, and will need to submit a bid which complies with the stated requirements to obtain the funding.

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Why has this scheme come about?

During the pandemic, students were provided with state-of-the-art laptops, tablets and other devices, which, for many schools, has put strain on their networks and resulted in high levels of downtime.

As a result, this programme aims to help fund things like new access points, LAN switches and fibre cabling to ensure networks function smoothly, and that pupils benefit from optimised experiences. The scheme also aims to future-proof British schools for the latest generation of Multi-Gigabit technology.

How the initiative works

The DfE and your local authority will be in touch if your school is eligible for the initiative. Schools selected for the scheme will then be required to complete a compliant bid to obtain the funding.

You will then need to look for suppliers who can provide quotes and solutions for the relevant technologies such as WiFi 6 access points and Multi-Gigabit network switching. This is where Protos Networks and our team of dedicated network specialists can assist.

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Next-Generation WiFi 6

High-efficiency, cloud-managed WiFi 6 has become a prerequisite for schools looking to future-proof their wireless. The Cisco Meraki access points we utilise are built from the highest-grade components, and developed to deliver a seamless, optimised user experience for students. For IT admins, this translates into faster connections, higher user capacity, greater coverage and reduced resource demands/support calls.

Deployment & Support

Working with Protos Networks means you’ll have access to a team of specialists to design your cloud-managed Meraki network. Our experienced team of network engineers will be also on hand to assist with installation and deployment – right from start to finish.

Additionally, you’ll also benefit from ongoing, dedicated support to assist with any problems, troubleshooting or questions you may have.

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Why choose Cisco Meraki and Protos Networks?

Cisco Meraki is a recognised vendor for the scheme by the DfE and has positioned itself as the most trusted cloud-managed platform, offering the latest in IT and networking technologies.

Our long-standing partnership with this global leader and our experience in delivering network services to schools enables you to benefit from market-leading, simple and scalable networking services.

Multi-Gigabit Switching

Meraki Switches combine the simplicity of the cloud-managed dashboard with enterprise-grade hardware to meet the demands of next-gen wired and wireless networks.

This reliable solution is quick to deploy and easy to configure. It provides mission-critical features such as zero-touch deployment, network diagnostic tools, and application and user visibility – all while lowering costs, and saving school IT admins time.

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What happens next?

Once your funding has been approved in principle, the next step is to request a quote using the form below. We’ll follow up to confirm the requirements of your project(s), and finalise the quote.

If you like what you see, send the quote to your IT Adviser at the DfE. They’ll conduct compliance checks and ensure our proposal offers value for money. Once they approve the quote, you’ll just need to complete the order form, and then we’re good to go! Our specialist schools team will collaborate with you to deliver the solution.

Free cloud security and content filtering

As part of the package, Cisco are offering primary schools free licencing for Cisco Umbrella. Umbrella uses the infrastructure of the internet to block malicious destinations before your users ever connect to them and is also a very powerful content filtering solution.

Read our blog below detailing how our automation engineers helped schools simplify their safeguarding and content filtering using Cisco Meraki and Umbrella.

Simplifying Safeguarding

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