Yorkshire and Humber Grid for Learning (YHGfL) has selected IT
security and data protection firm Sophos to provide 11,000 schools
in Yorkshire and Humber with protection from viruses and other
malicious threats. In the first instance three-quarters of the
schools in the consortium's area (encompassing 65,000 computers)
will be protected by Sophos's endpoint security solutions, but this
is expected to expand early next year.
YHGfL is a regional broadband consortium with twelve local
authority members* representing 275 secondary schools, 86 special
schools, 30 nurseries and 1,657 primary schools and their partners
in learning. A regional centre for excellence and innovation in
e-learning, the consortium provides secure broadband connections to
schools in the region and uses its bulk purchasing ability to find
the best deals for its twelve member authorities - key in the
current environment. In addition, as well as access to licensed
content and many other free resources, YHGfL also provides a wide
range of services, including curriculum support, e-safety guidance
and continuing professional development workshops.
E-safety is a key focus for the Grid, which appointed a
full-time e-safety manager 18 months ago to provide support and
guidance to educational establishments in the region on both
behavioural and technical approaches to e-safety. In addition to
working with schools to ensure they are protected, this remit also
includes running seminars and workshops and working with the
police, schools and LEAs.
Phil Moore, Chief Executive, Yorkshire and Humber Grid for
Learning, said: "Sophos came up with an incredibly good deal for
the Grid and the solution fits squarely with schools in our region.
Rollout is already underway and our job is now to work with schools
and the individual authorities to ensure everything goes smoothly.
We've also received great support from Sophos, who have been very
responsive in helping to sort out any teething problems."
He added "YHGfL's aim is to become the regional centre for
excellence and innovation in eLearning. Along with the other nine
Regional Broadband Consortia (RBCs), YHGfL was originally set up to
meet the Government target of connecting all schools in the region
to broadband. Having accomplished that task, we're now turning our
attention to how we can add value to the region by becoming a
strategic partner to the Government and to relevant Government
Ciaran Rafferty, VP - Sophos UK&I, said: "Sophos works with
a number of Grids, helping protect schools' networks from viruses
and other malicious code as well as securing student data against
potential breaches. We are delighted to be working with the
Yorkshire and Humber Grid for Learning, who provide a fantastic
range of eLearning services and resources to their partner local
authorities, as well as delivering them great value for money when
it comes to agreements like the one with Sophos. We look forward to
a long relationship with the Grid and its member authorities,
working together to share best practice."