Don't let Free School Meals swallow up your IT Suite

7th May 2014

By: I-Desk Solutions


Some schools are under constant pressure to deliver the current curriculum in the appropriate environment for each individual subject. Limitations on the amount of specialist spaces available can be caused by a number of factors, many of which are outside the control of the school’s management team who are then required to overcome the problems through adept use of the timetable. The latest issue to affect the primary sector is the need to provide meals to every pupil up to the age of seven.  While £600m has been made available for this initiative it is unlikely that this would fund a new fully fitted kitchen extension at every school where additional facilities are needed.


The costs and timescales involved in a new-build extension are prohibitive and are causing some schools to consider converting an existing teaching space to kitchen facilities. i-desk Solutions Limited, who have recently joined SCHOOLS NorthEast as a Commercial Supporter, have been alerted to the fact that specialist IT Suites could be particularly at risk based on a perception that access to IT can be fragmented and located in resource areas, libraries, etc, throughout the school.




An IT Suite in a typical primary school of 200 pupils each receiving one hour of active IT learning per week provides around 8,000 hours of specialist teaching per year in an environment designed specifically for the subject. Apart from having to timetable 8,000 hours of specialist learning into smaller groups across a number of separate locations, a major issue would surely be that the presence of distractions in these other non IT-specific locations would adversely affect pupils’ attention levels.


i-Desk offer a solution to this and many other scenarios where limited classroom space causes pressure on the timetable. The i-Rise model allows any teaching space to be converted to an IT Suite at the touch of a button by lowering the monitors into the desks. The PCs are integrated securely within the desk surface leaving room to work and, again, removing a potential distraction.  The flexibility is further enhanced as the monitors can be lowered in sections allowing some pupils to work using text books at a “normal” desk while others use the IT equipment.




i-Desk are marking their appointment as a Commercial Supporter of SCHOOLS NorthEast by offering 10 FREE half-day mini-exhibitions which they are calling “Show & Tell”. These sessions will offer management and staff the opportunity to view samples of i-Desk’s range of furniture with integrated IT on their own school premises and at a time to suit them. The full range of i-Desk products can be viewed on their website – – and a “Show & Tell” session can be booked by contacting George Maddox, Business Development Manager for the North East, on 07712 395 126 or by e-mail at