Opening back in 1926, Crompton House CofE School has grown considerably since then. Rated one of the top 75 state schools, with well above national averages for examination results, it comes as no surprise Crompton House was rated overall “Good” by Ofsted in 2015. With a grade of “Outstanding” in behaviour and safety, Crompton House wanted to replicate this status in the digital world; therefore, a safeguarding tool became necessary.
Prior to Impero Education Pro, Crompton House was using LanSchool for their classroom management needs. However, with an introduction of statutory legislation in Keeping Children Safe in Education regarding monitoring and filtering, Crompton House wanted a solution to meet and exceed these requirements.
The ICT Team Leader drove the decision to change and started by trialling a couple of the bigger products on the market, including NetSupport and Impero. After deciding Impero offered more at a granular level, the ICT Team Leader presented the solution to the Senior Leadership Team. The team quickly saw the benefits in terms of ticking all the boxes for Ofsted inspections and the decision to purchase was made. The ICT Team Leader described the approval process as “one of the easiest products I’ve ever got through.”
When it came to implementing Impero Education Pro across the Crompton House network, the ICT Team Leader described the process as “very straightforward”. Once a group policy was created, it was simple to push out the software out onto all devices.
Since installing Impero Education Pro, Crompton House CofE School has realised a number of core benefits:
Focuses learning: The tech-savvy students at Crompton House would often unplug the network cables causing their computer to stop working. With Impero Education Pro, a message appears on the computer screen to prompt the teacher about the situation, enabling them to easily rectify the problem, and get the student back on track quickly.
Saves money: Classroom desktops and IT suites would often be left on 24/7. Using the power management features included in Impero Education Pro all computers power off at 7pm and back on at 7am, helping to reduce electricity costs.
Supporting statutory safeguarding procedures: Impero Education Pro helps to protect students and prevents them from accessing inappropriate sites beyond firewalls. The log viewer helps Crompton House provide appropriate decision-making and information gathering to maintain safeguarding in the digital environment.
Q&A with Jamie MacFarlane, ICT Team Leader
How has Impero Education Pro helped you keep your students safe online?
In terms of online safety, our school has come on leaps and bounds since using Impero Education Pro. When we first implemented the software, we attended an online webinar that helped show us how to use the online safety features more. Following this, we showed the Designated Safeguarding Lead (DSL) the capabilities of Impero Education Pro and he was massively impressed. Using the email notification alerts we can see everything, even as it’s happening. The online safety handbook provided by Impero has been our bible; we have it open almost all the time and we’ve worked closely to it, implementing the structures advised. We’ve created policies with our Governors around using Impero Education Pro – any teacher who uses devices must use Impero and triage incidents as they occur.
We’re lucky enough to have a pastoral department, also known as our ‘Hub team’, made up of selected staff including Assistant Heads and Head of Years. These individuals receive automated email notifications and can deal with these outside of the classroom. The terms classified as ‘severe’ in Impero Education Pro are sent directly to the DSL. Now that we’ve got it set up properly it only takes 20 minutes out of someone’s job every day and every student is safe and protected. It’s really good! To help put it into perspective, we had a bullying incident and Impero Education Pro was able to capture this between students; we showed the captures to the Head of Year and he couldn’t believe it, Impero absolutely hit the nail on the head in that incident. It’s honestly been amazing implementing something like this around safeguarding, it really provides a whole school approach and I love that.
How has Impero Education Pro made your job easier?
From a network management point of view, every device has an Impero client. We’ve set up groups and rooms, so remote support is a game changer. Having the ability to remotely administrate any device on the network, considering we’re quite a big site with multiple buildings, saves us hundreds of hours of time. We no longer have to walk to the opposite end of the school to sort out issues – we’ve got more control over the entire network. One of my favourite features is the itinerary of devices. We can see all devices hardware spec, which is a real benefit, it gives me and the team a good overview and allows us to be a more efficient IT support department. Alongside that, the patch management feature is a huge benefit!
How would you describe our support team?
Impero is a completely different company to what it was a couple of years ago. It’s worlds apart. I’ve never had any issue that’s not been resolved within the hour. As a support service that’s fantastic!
How would you summarise Impero Education Pro?
Schools best friend.