DfE recommends full fibre for school broadband

DfE have set new advisory standards for schools to follow with their Broadband, Safeguarding, and Security.

The DfE has offered new guidance for schools to follow to ensure appropriate school broadband, digital safeguarding, and security solutions are in place. Starting with a full fibre connection. These standards have been published to encourage schools to have faster, more reliable, and safer school internet.

Here are the key takeaways. Click here for the complete descriptions.

full fibre

Schools and colleges should use a full fibre connection

Migrating to full fibre connections increases the capacity and speed which allows the proper use of learning resources available to teachers.

The benefits of a full fibre line include –

  • High speeds and reliability.
  • Options for symmetrical bandwidth for upload and download speeds.
  • Can implement cloud solutions like VoIP phone systems for schools.
  • Future-proof, FTTP is designed to be easily scalable.

What does a full fibre connection look like?

Often called FTTP or leased line, full fibre connections, unlike other connection types, connects to the school through fibre optic cables rather than the existing copper wire infrastructure, allowing for ultrafast school broadband that is ten times faster and less degradable wiring. 

When and how to follow the new standards?

The DfE requirements advised schools and colleges to implement full fibre connections as soon as possible; this should be when a contract ends or if an option to upgrade comes prior.

To meet the standard set by DfE:

  • Primary schools should have a minimum of 100Mbps download speed and 30Mbps upload speed.
  • Secondary and Colleges should have a connection with the capacity to deliver 1Gbps download and upload speed.

Schools and colleges should have a backup broadband connection

The need to have a backup connection is to limit the risk of a single point of failure; if the connection goes down, the school can operate on a separate connection while the other one is being fixed.

When and how to follow the new standards?

A backup school broadband connection should be implemented when the new connection is installed.

Coconnect can advise you on meeting the guidelines if you would like to get in touch.

Schools and colleges should have appropriate IT security and digital safeguarding systems

It is paramount that children are protected from potentially harmful and inappropriate online material. A whole school and college approach to online safety is essential in creating a safe and protected online technology use. It establishes ways to identify, intervene in, and escalate any concerns where appropriate.

When and how to follow the new standards?

You should already be meeting this standard as a part of the ongoing safeguarding requirements set out in the statutory safeguarding guidance on keeping children safe in education.

UKSIC has published additional guidance on definitions of ‘appropriate filtering and monitoring. Find out more here

Why Coconnect?

  • Coconnect can offer a full fibre broadband connection and provide a range of speeds up to 10Gbps
  • Filtering and monitoring solutions in partnership with industry leaders NetsweeperSmoothwall and Senso.
  • Firewalls and Anti-virus solutions from educational focused security providers Fortinet and ESET.
  • Additional cloud services can help future-proof your school IT like VoIP phone systems.
  • Seamless installation and setup
  • Market leading SLAs
  • 100% positive customer feedback, 99% customers renew

If you are looking at new broadband providers, get in touch or book a call; we would be happy to have an honest conversation about the new DFE standards and how we can best assist you.

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