Last week, when we announced the broad availability of Office 365 for education in Australia, I was overseas, so I didn’t manage to post as much information up as I’d hoped. So I’m catching up now – today it’s a first Office 365 for education case study in an Australian school.
The case study, from our cloud partner, Paradyne, is of Woodleigh School in Victoria. The school has been one of the early adopter schools using Office 365 for education in Australia. They’re a two-campus independent school which takes students from early childhood to Year 12, and are based on the Mornington Peninsula. As with many schools, they had a challenge of increasing costs and complexity of their IT system. Their first step, of moving their email systems on Office 365 for education in the cloud, meant that they could reduce the need for internal servers and local storage and backup – at the same time increasing accessibility for both Windows and Mac users – as well as for iOS and Android users.
The Paradyne team helped the school implement a hybrid system, which allows them to integrate their user’s between onsite and cloud services (for example, some users could have their email on a school server, fully connected to users in the cloud). With the full roll-out the school has been able to switch off three servers, saving them hardware, software and electricity costs.
As Jonathan Walter, the Woodleigh School Principal summarised it:
|Having email hosted in Office 365 has meant we have reduced our number of servers by three, reduced our licensing requirements for Windows and email scanning. I don’t have to worry about internal backups or disaster recovery and have saved precious time for our IT staff.|
But Office 365 for education doesn’t just provide an email service. Education customers also get access to the Office Web Apps, SharePoint Online and Lync Online in their free service, so the school has plans to start using these systems to reduce their costs further, whilst increasing their ability for collaborative learning and enhanced communication with parents, students and teachers. As Jonathan went on to say:
|With the successful move our email to Office 365, I am looking forward to the further benefits of Office Web Apps, Lync video conferencing online, SharePoint in the cloud, and cloud-based file storage.|
You can read the full Woodleigh School case study on the Paradyne website. As Steve Fraser, the Director of ICT Services at the school said "I have nothing but praise for the service provided by Paradyne"