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Hackers and cybercriminals appear to be increasingly turning away from larger organisations in favour of targeting smaller institutions
Cybercriminals can embed malware in email attachments, which if downloaded can spread through a school’s network to steal confidential information and demand a ransom for its release. Phishing attacks typically involve a scammer posing as a trusted source – such as HR staff – and asking for confidential information which can then be used to access school systems. Cybercriminals work to identify attack vectors, known as weaknesses in an organisation’s digital infrastructure. School servers, if improperly maintained, can become a further vector used to infiltrate a school’s various systems. Moving from on-premise servers to a managed cloud-hosted environment can protect against these vulnerabilities by offering sophisticated safeguarding technologies and protocols that may otherwise be unaffordable to individual schools. Managed cloud-hosted solutions include performance and security services that protect against DDOS (distributed denial of service) attacks, and web application firewalls that automatically prevent hacking attempts. Cloud-hosted solutions also offer enterprise managed detection and response (MDR), which protects data from attacks, whilst being monitored by a team of security experts who continually pull data from servers and scan it for threats and attacks. Another means of protecting servers involves regular server maintenance which ensures servers are running on the latest instance and prevents cybercriminals from exploiting outdated or unpatched systems. Lastly, managed services back up servers hourly, so in the event of an incident, it can be restored without losing days or months worth of crucial data.
If you’d like to learn more about the cybersecurity risks in schools, the methods of scammers and how to protect against them, join us at our upcoming webinar: Threats to schools and how to mitigate them. The webinar will be led by the BBC’s first dedicated cybersecurity journalist, Joe Tidy, who will explain the ever-evolving world of cyber scams in schools using real-world examples and provide some top tips on keeping your school secure. We’ll also be joined by iSAMS managing director Alastair Price, who will give an overview of the measures in place to protect iSAMS schools. Register for free here. [post_title] => The growing importance of cybersecurity in schools [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => the-growing-importance-of-cybersecurity-in-schools [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2021-09-03 11:03:18 [post_modified_gmt] => 2021-09-03 10:03:18 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://ie-today.co.uk/?p=36149 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [1] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 23490 [post_author] => 15 [post_date] => 2020-02-21 00:00:53 [post_date_gmt] => 2020-02-21 00:00:53 [post_content] => With books to mark, lessons to plan, and student outcomes and wellbeing to continually monitor, staying after hours to meet varying deadlines has become part and parcel of a teacher’s everyday job. But the majority of teachers are already suffering under enormous workloads, with one report revealing that 68% of ex-teachers left the profession due to an unmanageable volume of work. With concerns that this could increase further as more look to leave teaching, schools need to start finding ways to help daily tasks become more manageable for their teaching staff so they can spend more time doing what they’re fundamentally trained to do: teach. So, here are seven time-saving features to support your teaching staff:

1. Take the register anywhere

Give your teachers on-the-go access to quickly record class and group attendance, marking students as present, absent or late in just a few taps via their mobile device. Our iTeacher App gives teachers the freedom to take registers anywhere and at any time, whether it’s in the classroom, on the playing field, or out and about on a school trip.

2. Check timetables quickly

Provide teachers with instant access to details of their current, next and future lessons, with clear visibility of their full timetable via their mobiles, iPads or other portable devices. In the iTeacher App teachers can view key timetable information quickly and easily, including additional filtering by teacher, student, room, department, grade, year or set. This means they can quickly identify which lesson a student should be in or find a colleague.

3. Organise substitute teachers

These timetabling features give teachers the power to not only view their own timetables and those of their peers, but they also ensure quick access to substitution timetables where they can identify all rooms and teachers that are available within any given period. This will significantly improve the efficiency of organising cover for lessons, alleviating the inevitable back and forth email exchange between teachers and admin staff.

4. Send important communications

Sharing information with the right people as soon as possible is one of the biggest challenges schools face, especially as they grow and expand across multiple sites. That's why the iTeacher App enables teachers to send emergency broadcasts instantly to staff, students and parents via email and SMS, directly from their mobiles. With this integrated communications feature, it’s never been easier to share key information with students and colleagues as soon as things happen. You also have the option to send helpful system messages and free push notifications to keep other teachers updated with important student information, school news and timetable changes.

5. View student profiles

We understand how important it is for your teachers to keep in touch with the progress of each of their students and year groups, which is why we’ve developed features that make student profiles readily available for teachers to view at any given time. The iTeacher App helps teachers access academic, pastoral, medical and emergency contact information whenever they need it. Plus, the iFeed feature provides updates on any significant changes facing a student or group of students in that teacher’s care. In flagging this, it’s much easier for your teaching staff to support or reward students and address any issues as they’re raised.

6. Award commendations and assign penalties

Another vital aspect of school life, teachers are often unable to issue commendations and penalties to students instantly and instead have to set a reminder to do this at the end of the school day. Now, using their iTeacher App, teachers can record commendations and/or penalties immediately or whenever it’s most convenient for them, using the Reward & Conduct functionality available within the iSAMS system. They can also quickly log any accidents and incidents, informing relevant staff members as soon as they occur.

7. Write and review school reports on the go

School reports are renowned for being a particularly arduous but vital task for your teachers, so why not support them with this by giving them the ability to write and submit grades, assessments and school reports wherever they are. With the iReport App, an ideal pairing to our iTeacher App, your teachers are able to: write school reports, input assessment grades, view the status of each report, mark reports as draft, incomplete or ready for proof reading, view students’ past grades, and write and review any accompanying comments before submitting them. This gives your teaching staff the opportunity to manage their time even more efficiently by completing time-consuming report writing tasks more quickly and at their own convenience.

How has this nifty app helped support teachers so far?

At iSAMS one of our key aims is to support your teachers, and we launched the iTeacher App specifically to help make day-to-day classroom tasks easier for them. With this intuitive app, it’s now possible for teachers to complete 70% of their daily tasks on-the-go, directly from their mobile device. "Sherborne Girls was an early adopter of the iSAMS product and we have been very happy with how the product range has grown. The new iTeacher App allows teachers to register a class on their iPad, and to search and find pupil data information quickly," says Louise Orton, deputy head of teaching and learning at Sherborne Girls.
Sherborne Girls was an early adopter of the iSAMS product and we have been very happy with how the product range has grown
Without having to rifle through reams of paperwork or find an available school computer and wait for it to power up, your teachers can get hold of all the information you need with just a few taps on their mobile or tablet. Just imagine how much more your teachers could do with that extra time... "iSAMS is the most intuitive, flexible and user-friendly school MIS that I have come across in my career so far. They are progressive and up-to-date with the latest technologies and recently, with the release of their apps, it has positively transformed the way we manage various in-house processes," says Benoy Ittyavirah, director of IT at Wycliffe College.
Interested in saving your teachers valuable time and maximising the use of your school management information system to support them? Visit www.isams.com [post_title] => Seven ways to save your teachers time every week [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => seven-ways-save-teachers-time-every-week [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2020-06-01 14:39:37 [post_modified_gmt] => 2020-06-01 13:39:37 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://ie-today.co.uk/dashboard2/?post_type=articles&p=23490 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [2] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 21330 [post_author] => 15 [post_date] => 2019-10-21 09:58:58 [post_date_gmt] => 2019-10-21 08:58:58 [post_content] => Your alarm goes off in the morning and, stifling a yawn, you roll over and switch it off. You briefly wrestle with your willpower until you’re out of bed and crossing the room to the window. You pull the curtains back and your eyes adjust to the sunlight now filling the room – but what’s this? The air is thick with a dense and heavy smoke that covers the sky as far as you can see. A quick check of the news confirms that there has been another forest fire just a few miles away that’s caused the air quality to hit dangerous levels across the region. Quickly, you flip over to your emails to find a note from the head of school asking you to notify all parents, legal guardians and students that school will be closed for the day. Whilst the specifics may differ to the above example, a scenario in which you will be required to send out emergency communications en masse is one that you’re likely to face at least once during your time as a member of staff at a school. With technology advancing so rapidly, schools around the world are facing a wealth of new challenges and opportunities surrounding how and when they issue emergency communications to parents and students. So, we’ve explored some of the key dos and don’ts for you to consider when sending emergency messages, highlighting some of the most effective things you can do to make sure they reach the right people at the right time.

When should you send emergency comms?

You don’t want to be sending out “emergency comms” every day, or members of your school community will stop paying attention to them. So, the first thing you need to do is decide whether or not the situation warrants an emergency broadcast. As a rough guide, please find below some typical situations in which we’d expect an emergency broadcast to be sent to the following members of the school community.

To parents:

  • All extra-curricular activities have been cancelled today,
  • Due to severe weather, parents to collect children from school early,
  • Severe weather in the area school is closed today,
  • There has been a car/pedestrian accident just outside the school main gates, please be cautious when collecting your children,
  • The school bus has been delayed by approximately X minutes,
  • The school trip will be returning later than planned; the updated pick up time for students will be at X o’clock.

To students:

  • The building needs to be evacuated immediately,
  • An incident affecting an individual student or a group of students,
  • There has been an unexpected schedule alteration,
  • Sports match cancellations or changes.

What's the best platform to use?

Once you’ve evaluated the situation and determined that an emergency broadcast is relevant, you’ll need to decide on the best platform to use to ensure the message reaches your desired audience. As one of the fastest growing technology phenomena ever, it’s hardly surprising that we’ve discovered many schools looking to mobile phones as their principle tool for emergency communications. Plus, with recent statistics highlighting that there are now almost 1 billion more mobile connections than people in the world, you’re almost guaranteed to get hold of the people you need to on this platform. When it comes to mobile devices, you have multiple options to consider with email, apps and SMS all capable of sending and delivering key information on a global scale. Here at iSAMS, we’ve developed a suite of multi-lingual apps to help disseminate important messages but, when it comes to emergency communications, we believe the best platform is SMS. That’s why we developed our SMS Gateway; to support you in effectively sending emergency broadcasts from within your iSAMS MIS or via the iTeacher App. But why SMS over push notifications? In short, you widen your reach. Almost 2.5 billion more people own mobile phones than smartphones, which means that you can’t assume everyone will have easy access to emails and apps via a smartphone. Not only this, but many users disable app push notifications – so there’s no guarantee you’ll reach them via this platform. Meanwhile, SMS is universally compatible with every mobile phone on the market.

Get recipients to engage with your messages

Now you know which platform you’re using to send your emergency messages; your next challenge is making sure that they’re actually read. Text messages are much harder than emails to ignore, with them delivered directly to mobile devices and with less chance of them being mistaken for or lost in a sea of spam. Having said that, there are still three quick and easy things you can do when writing your emergency broadcasts to make sure they’re being read and actioned in the right way:
  1. Keep it short – preferably no more than 160 characters.
  2. Keep it simple – focus on who’s affected, why, what to do about it and when.
  3. Bear in mind that multiple messages may be needed, eg regular updates.
  4. Set up templates of commonly occurring situations you can use as a basis for consistency.
Using these tips, an example of an emergency SMS for our earlier scenario would be: [SCHOOL NAME] will be closed today due to dangerous air quality. Staff, students & parents are advised to stay at home. We hope school will reopen tomorrow. Updates to follow.

Keeping a record

It’s easy to let administrative tasks slip under the radar, but keeping a record of all the emergency communications you send and who receives them is hugely important. Not only does having a clear paper trail protect you if needed, but you can ensure that your broadcasts are received by everyone who needs to see them and can use them as a template for any potential future comms that are required. This can be quite challenging, which is why the iSAMS SMS Gateway automates much of this process, as well as offering detailed analytics surrounding each series of communication. This can even be broken down to as granular a level as gathering key data per text. Having a designated platform such as this where you can view all outbound logs, including status changes as messages are received on each recipient’s handset, and tracking data, which can verify whether the SMS has been read, is vital to help you understand the effectiveness of your emergency communications. Using this information will help you determine how you move forwards with communications of this nature in the future, ensuring that you’re as effective as possible with emergency broadcasts.

Want to know more about iSAMS SMS Gateway?

If you’re interested in an intuitive and sophisticated tool to help you manage SMS communications across your whole school community, you can find out more about our SMS Gateway by visiting our website. If you’d like to see this module in action, please get in touch and we’d be delighted to organise a free no-obligation demo for you. [post_title] => The dos and don’ts of emergency communications in schools [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => the-dos-and-donts-of-emergency-communications-in-schools [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2019-10-21 09:58:58 [post_modified_gmt] => 2019-10-21 08:58:58 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://ie-today.co.uk/dashboard2/?post_type=articles&p=21330 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [3] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 17669 [post_author] => 15 [post_date] => 2019-04-26 00:00:01 [post_date_gmt] => 2019-04-25 23:00:01 [post_content] => With over 80 COBIS member schools having partnered with iSAMS, a management information system (MIS) which fully supports British international school life, in this article we look at how a MIS can (and should) support your school as we advance into the future of international education. iSAMS offers internationals schools features to monitor student wellbeing and improve communication across the school community with a suite of multilingual apps. The system is designed to support dual-curriculum and help improve the efficiency of multicultural student enrolment with an integrated, paperless online admissions solution – plus the integrated accounting solution is tailored to meet the specific requirements for finance teams. Accessing key information anywhere, anytime In the height of the digital era, when you’re used to 24/7 access to everything you need online, we don’t see why school information should be any different. That’s why the iSAMS platform is 100% web-based and designed to meet international schools' fundamental needs, now and in the future, all while supporting members of staff, transforming parental engagement and empowering student learning. Efficient student enrolment As your school looks to expand, we all know that first impressions can often make all the difference when it comes to showcasing what you can offer prospective parents and students – and the iSAMS Admissions Portal does just this. From initial enquiries right through to student enrolment, the portal is flexible enough to mould to your current processes so it’s as intuitive as possible for your admissions team to use. Branded to your preferences it sits within your school’s own website and seamlessly links to the MIS in real-time, so all enquiries, data and reporting can be managed directly within iSAMS. For prospective parents, the Admissions Portal becomes a simpler and more convenient way to send comprehensive enquiry information to a school they’re interested in; details which can be submitted at any time, from anywhere in the world and using any device. Encourage parental engagement iSAMS supports parents at international schools with add-ons such as the Parent Portal and iParent App. Thoughtfully structured to give parents instant insights into the school life of each of their children, you’re able to share timetables, teaching groups, exam information, school reports, disciplinary details and permission slips remotely, so parents can access them quickly, anywhere in the world and easily at their convenience. Streamline administrative processes Your members of staff are the bedrock of your school community and culture, so as your school expands you want to ensure they’re also well supported in the completion of their daily tasks. iSAMS features help to streamline lengthy administrative processes and take them online, so your staff can spend more time teaching, building relationships with prospective and existing parents, and addressing other essential tasks. A particular favourite among the teachers we work with is the iReport App, which offers a simpler and faster way of completing end-of-term and end-of-year reports via mobile devices. Now teachers can manage their time even more efficiently by writing and submitting grades, assessments and school reports wherever they are – whether it’s on school trip commutes, in the classroom or on the move. Developed specifically with your finance team in mind, a tried and tested accounting software from the business arena has been adapted for use within the education sector. The outcome, is the highly intuitive and unique iFinance cloud-based accounting solution. An integrated MIS and accounting solution brings your academic, wellbeing, administrative and fee billing elements together with a powerful accounting and finance solution. With fully-interactive reporting and a rich range of features, you can monitor your budgets and manage your finances with even more confidence. Supporting student wellbeing Beyond all this, we know that at the end of the day, an international school’s central aim is to provide students with the best possible experience and help them define their path to higher education. The Wellbeing Manager module was developed so all student wellbeing and safeguarding concerns could be recorded, managed and monitored in a single place, alongside recommended onward actions and future developments that can be shared with relevant staff members and parents/guardians where required. Empowering student learning Beyond this, students also have access to their own dedicated Student Portal and iStudent App. In a generation that’s grown up with mobile devices, it’s imperative to create communications channels that feel most natural and easy for students to encourage greater engagement. The Student Portal and App provide each student with immediate access to their timetables, teaching groups, exam details, school reports, key updates and more – wherever they are and on their preferred device. By facilitating this greater interaction between students and your school we hope to inspire your students to take control of their learning and work towards improved outcomes.
Intrigued by the possibilities iSAMS could unlock at your school? Visit us at the 38th COBIS Annual Conference to see how we can support your school. Or visit www.isams.com to find out more about the leading MIS supplier to over 850 schools , working in over 65 countries around the world. Or email sales@isams.com and we’ll happily answer any questions you might have. [post_title] => How COBIS member schools can benefit from a MIS [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => how-cobis-member-schools-can-benefit-from-a-mis [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2019-04-25 10:46:15 [post_modified_gmt] => 2019-04-25 09:46:15 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://ie-today.co.uk/dashboard2/?post_type=articles&p=17669 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [4] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 256 [post_author] => 1 [post_date] => 2018-09-26 00:00:00 [post_date_gmt] => 2018-09-25 22:00:00 [post_content] => Teachers and other staff members play a significant role in a child's life. In a typical school day, they act as their primary guardian, which is why so many schools have already invested heavily into processes and training to support a student’s wellbeing. An adolescent's school career is an extremely important phase of growth in their lives. There are many scenarios and happenings that impact greatly. This ultimately determines a child's course of life or even who they will become in the future. The very fact that teachers have such influence, spending much of their time nurturing students into healthy adults, means it’s important they have the tools to record, monitor and track every learner’s wellbeing. It’s fundamental to ensuring children receive a positive educational experience and that they develop to their full potential.    The iSAMS Pastoral Manager supports the proactive, preventative pastoral care that many independent schools are renowned for. Teachers can record concerns against single or multiple students and set appropriate actions to manage those concerns. Using the Raised Pastoral flag feature, teachers can easily identify moments which have significant impacts on a student, and which should be highlighted to school staff. A child's confidence is continuously developing, and their self-esteem can easily be damaged. A child will not develop and grow to their full potential if the major impacts in their lives are not monitored and addressed by an adult. Children need reassurance and a lot of help along the way to overcome whatever obstacles life throws at them. Teachers are well-aware of the vital role they play in helping children along their paths; they have the ability to ‘make or break’ a child's experience, depending on how and when they respond to different scenarios. Today, teachers are under immense pressure to ensure each child is provided with the best possible care. They know that more often than not, a student won't ask for help and so it is their responsibility to monitor behaviour, grades and other external influences. Using the iSAMS Pastoral Manager, each students’ pastoral record is stored for safekeeping and is displayed with the students’ basic details and timeline of concerns. The students’ timeline gives a teacher an easy-to-view glance of crucial life events and concerns which can be shared with other staff, parents and caregivers should the need arise. If student well-being and safeguarding are to be high on a schools’ agenda, having an efficient way of tracking a student’s well-being is a must. The iSAMS Pastoral Manager was developed specifically with this in mind. If you would like a demo of the iSAMS Pastoral Manager please email sales@isams.com or visit www.isams.com. You can also see iSAMS at the HMC Autumn Conference taking place from 1st to 4th October in Manchester, visit them on stand #9. [post_title] => Schools should invest in monitoring student wellbeing [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => schools-should-invest-in-monitoring-student-wellbeing [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2018-11-29 16:04:04 [post_modified_gmt] => 2018-11-29 16:04:04 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [5] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 516 [post_author] => 1 [post_date] => 2018-05-15 00:00:00 [post_date_gmt] => 2018-05-14 22:00:00 [post_content] => Together we’ve listened to schools’ frustrations around disparate systems and we have developed a solution bringing together the academic, pastoral, administrative and fee billing elements, with an accounting system that will help you to eliminate unnecessary duplication of work and reduce costly mistakes. A solution we have developed, in partnership with iSAMS, specifically with the Bursary in mind. The iFinance solution seamlessly synchronises with existing Fee Billing modules to offer schools, a complete accounting solution. The Fee Billing module handles the complicated billing structures and generates the invoices, whilst iFinance manages the accounts and balances. Making the iFinance solution a secure cloud-hosted accounting and fee billing system in one powerful web based and easy-to-use solution. Here’s how the solution works: Comprehensive Flexible Billing This highly flexible and simple solution meets all your fee billing requirements, allowing your accounts department to generate bills and add charges to specific applicants, current students and alumni in several different ways. Charges can be allocated by individuals or by batch, such as year, house, or form and using the module’s search tools, you can also assign single or multiple charges and set up recurring charges. Including a simple and efficient invoice amendment system to easily make any necessary changes and a standard suite of reports for both pre- and post-invoice, with the additional option to create ad-hoc reports. You also have the benefit of being able to look at any bill through the extensive invoice history section. Student, parent and invoicing data is synchronised at the click of a single button to the Sales and Nominal Ledgers and parental deposits can be posted and managed with a reconciliation to the nominal ledger liability account. The flexible deferred income functionality also removes the need for monthly journals to be calculated and posted. Key Features
  • Produce school bills
  • Assign charges to applicants, current & former
  • Flexible billing to add a charge to a bill in multiple ways
  • Split billing system
  • Billing notes
  • Recurring charges
  • A recurring wizard to add pupils to existing recurring charges
  • Nominal structure
  • Discount management
  • Summarise items multiple student support
  • Applicant billing
  • Invoice publishing via email and Parent Portal
  • Manage direct debits
Powerful Accounting IFinance is powered by AccountsIQ, a unique solution, comprising of accounting, consolidation and Business Intelligence in one powerful, web based and easy-to-use solution. The Business Intelligence dashboards provide an overview of key information, including a budget-holder’s dashboard making it easy to manage spend. The solution includes several predefined reports and the ability to create custom reports profiled by user. Reporting is fully-interactive and allows you to drill down to transaction level and produce customised analysis, which can be easily exported to Word, PDF or Excel, users are also able to drill down into all ledgers throughout the system. Including a Bank Reconciliation feature, which allows you to easily allocate funds received against outstanding balances, all updated balances are immediately fed back to the Fee Billing module. Using the workflow approval process, paperless purchase orders and purchase invoices can be automatically sent for approval before they are posted to the accounting system, with customisable layers of approval, saving precious time. Key Features
  • Multi-currency accounting
  • Recurring Invoicing, accruals and prepayment capability
  • Parent/child billing allowing multiple fee payers to be assigned to any single child
  • Purchase order approval
  • Budget and cash flow management
  • Departmental analysis and budgeting
  • Commitment accounting versus budgets
  • Procurement management
  • Key performance Indicators
  • Advanced reporting and dashboards
  • User profiling and enhanced risk control
  • Audit control
  • Consolidated accounts
  • Compliant with SORP requirements for schools registered as charities
Pricing This unique accounting solution is offered on an annual licence basis. It is charged according to the number of students. Contact Us If you would like better control over every aspect of your school’s billing and accounting, please contact us on +44 (0)203 568 7350 or email sales@accountsiq.com. We look forward to hearing from you. [post_title] => AccountsIQ and iSAMS join forces to offer iFinance [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => accountsiq-and-isams-join-forces-to-offer-ifinance [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2018-11-29 16:21:09 [post_modified_gmt] => 2018-11-29 16:21:09 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [6] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 525 [post_author] => 1 [post_date] => 2018-05-02 00:00:00 [post_date_gmt] => 2018-05-01 22:00:00 [post_content] => Supporting the COBIS conference theme of ‘Leading Learning’ are two hotly discussed topics which are relevant to both UK independent schools and international schools, these being: 1.    Investing in a Pastoral System to support the wellbeing of students to comply with the Prevent Duty and GIRFEC Guidelines. 2.    The duty of schools to protect the personal data and privacy of students, parents, staff and teachers by complying with the impending GDPR Law. We look at both these topics and why you should be considering a technology solution to enable you to support and comply. 1.    A pastoral system to support the Prevent Duty and GIRFEC guidelines The resounding trend is the approach that schools are taking to invest in resources, processes and technologies to improve outcomes and support a student’s wellbeing. Compliance with the Getting it right for every child (GIRFEC) guidelines or the Prevent Duty is crucial for any school in today’s world. At the core of this is the software solution to support pastoral care in your school. iSAMS, now the leading MIS supplier to independent schools in the UK, has over 750 schools using the platform which it continuously seek feedback from clients and the wider community, to ensure it remains the most usable, versatile software solution. Following this feedback, the need arose for a solution to capture all pastoral and safeguarding needs in a single place. The iSAMS Pastoral Manager fulfils this exact requirement. It’s a highly intuitive module which offers schools the ability to:
  • Manage all records in a single place and provide an evidence trail for inspections
  • Record concerns against single or multiple students, and actions related to those concerns
  • Identify moments which have significant impacts on a student which should be highlighted to all, using the Raised Pastoral flag feature
  • Record Life Events which have a substantial effect on a student at a certain time of the year
  • Audit all captured activity, view historical data to compare changes
  • Support the Scottish Governments GIRFEC (getting it right for every child) initiative
  • Support the Prevent Duty act
Institutions have a duty to care for students by providing pastoral support. Let iSAMS help you achieve this by implementing a powerful pastoral system which integrates with a robust MIS administrative platform. Visit iSAMS at on Stand #84 at the 2018 COBIS Annual Conference. 2.    Complying with the impending GDPR data regulation It is the duty of a school to protect the personal data and privacy of students, parents, staff and teachers. By May 25, 2018 every school within EU member states will need to fulfil The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) requirements or risk being imposed with penalties and fines. The GDPR protects basic information such as name, address, and ID numbers, along with web data such as location, IP address, cookie data and RFID tags. It also protects health and genetic data, biometric, racial and ethnic, and political data. It will affect every school that stores or processes personal information. The GDPR compliance may seem daunting and complicated to integrate which is why iSAMS, with the support of an external consultant and lengthy discussions with several schools, developed the Data Protection module. This easy-to-use module will help simplify the complexity of the GDPR requirements by providing schools with the ability to:
  • Create, configure and manage consent registers with Consent management, including capturing consent from parents at the start of the Admissions process via the Admissions Portal
  • Simplify the recording of information relating to any data breaches
  • Access a centralised area for the recording of all erasure requests
  • Record impact assessments carried out
  • Maintain a record of data protection audits carried out and their outcomes
  • Maintain a comprehensive record of all DSAR’s from request through to completion
iSAMS looks forward to working in partnership with schools and third parties to address and support the process of GDPR compliance. If you would like to learn more about the iSAMS Data Protection module contact iSAMS on +44 (0)1604 659100 or email sales@isams.com [post_title] => Leading learning through pastoral care and GDPR compliance [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => leading-learning-through-pastoral-care-and-gdpr-compliance [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2018-11-29 16:22:15 [post_modified_gmt] => 2018-11-29 16:22:15 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [7] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 674 [post_author] => 1 [post_date] => 2018-03-13 00:00:00 [post_date_gmt] => 2018-03-12 23:00:00 [post_content] => Kingsworth International School, based in Paris, is relatively new and expanding rapidly, having opened a second school at the beginning of 2016, with further expansion envisaged thereafter. They required an accounting system that offered the ability to scale as the school grows whilst minimising the capital outlay from the beginning. They also wanted to future-proof their IT strategy and to maximise workflow efficiencies, by ensuring the accounts system was fully integrated into their MIS system. This needed to be flexible enough to integrate into any further IT systems they may implement in the future. Kingsworth International selected AccountsIQ due to its flexible pricing model with no up-front capital costs, and which allowed them to only pay for the schools they required on the system from day one. They liked the SaaS pricing model, selecting and paying only for the functionality they required. As the school expands they can add functionality as required to the accounting system and use it for additional new schools, ensuring they only pay for what they use and keeping cost to a minimum during the start-up and expansion phase. Kingsworth International also liked the fact that AccountsIQ has a full integration and partnership with iSAMS school administration software. The accounting and MIS systems are fully integrated and supported on an ongoing basis. Being dynamically linked, any changes made in iSAMS automatically update AccountsIQ and vice versa. The first class hosting and support of the integration gives Kingsworth International the peace of mind that the two systems work in conjunction at all times.  As more and more schools look to Cloud hosting for their software services, the iSAMS and AccountsIQ partnership offers schools cutting-edge technologies designed specifically for Independent Schools. Tony Standing, Director of Information at Kingsworth International School, explained: “When we set out on our journey to implement a new accounting system for the Kingsworth Group of Schools, ease of use, integration with our current MIS, friendly relations and great customer service were top of our pre-requisites.  With AccountsIQ, we have all of that and more.  The team at AccountsIQ have been outstanding; from our initial contact and discussions, right the way through to helping our finance department implement the system in the best way for us. AccountsIQ is a system that is adapted for our needs, rather than us adapting to its capabilities, indeed its capabilities and possibilities are huge.” Find out more about AccountsIQ’s cloud accounting software for schools solution via their website or get in touch with our solutions expert on 0203 598 7350 and Sales@accountsIQ.com. [post_title] => Kingsworth School grows with flexible accounting software [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => kingsworth-school-grows-with-flexible-accounting-software [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2018-11-29 16:33:16 [post_modified_gmt] => 2018-11-29 16:33:16 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [8] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 1016 [post_author] => 41 [post_date] => 2017-10-18 00:00:00 [post_date_gmt] => 2017-10-17 22:00:00 [post_content] =>

The latest app from iSAMS gives your teachers the flexibility to complete their reports anytime, anyplace, anywhere.

Writing and submitting interim, end-of-term and end-of-year reports for multiple classes of students is already easier and faster with our School Reporting module – but we didn’t stop there. The new iReport App now brings report-writing functionality to every teacher’s mobile device, whether smartphone or tablet.

With the iReport App, teachers can write and submit grades, assessments and school reports wherever they are – on school trips, in the classroom and on the move. 

Intuitive and easy to use, it gives your teaching staff the opportunity to manage their time even more efficiently and complete time-consuming report writing tasks more quickly, and at their own convenience. The app is also secure, with the ability to restrict who is able to access it.

The iReport App is designed in line with the iTeacher App and has a clean and user-friendly interface, styled to reflect your school’s branding. It is organised across three key tabs:  

  • Status Page - all news items which display in the iSAMS Report Wizard appear here, followed by buttons to go to the Statement Bank page and the About page.
  • Reports – offers the ability to write reports for a variety of different report types, view and set the status of reports. Includes the ability to see past reports for each student.
  • Assessments – add assessment grades for achievement and effort for each student and also view past grades.

Key Features:

  • Write a report - easily and conveniently write academic school reports for various report types within the reports tab.
  • Add assessment grades – input assessment grades for students using the assessment tab.
  • View status of reports – see how many reports are left to write by viewing the status of reports.
  • Ability to mark as draft, incomplete or ready for proof reading – mark the status of all reports to help keep on top of report workloads.
  • View student's past grades and comments – quickly and easily see student’s past grades and comments.
  • Proof reading – proof read reports from anywhere using a mobile device
  • Personalised statement bank – use the personalised statement to input template comments instantly.

Pricing

The iReport App is offered free of charge as part of the iTeacher App subscription.

Technical 

The iReport App is a companion app for the iTeacher App; you must have a licence for the iTeacher App in order for it to work. The iReport App is available for iOS and Android devices. Simply open the iTeacher App on your mobile device, then download the iReport App from the App Store or Google Play. The apps should auto authenticate for instant use.

Contact us

If you’re interested in using the iTeacher and iReport Apps at your school to offer your teachers greater flexibility around the reporting period, please call us on +44 (0)1604 659100 or email marketing@isams.com. We look forward to hearing from you.

You can download the iReport app here on the App Store and here on Google Play.

About iSAMS

iSAMS was the first school administration management information system (MIS) to be entirely web-based. Its clever design combines a single database and suite of portals and apps to give you bespoke management of all academic, pastoral and administrative information. Our accessible, intuitive system is perfect for everyone involved at your school. From data administrators and staff to students and parents.

w. www.isams.com

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When Bellevue Education, the international schools group, decided to use iSAMS management information system (MIS), they opted to renew their accounting system at the same time, hoping to find a Cloud-based solution which would integrate with iSAMS and found AccountsIQ. 

Bellevue investigated integrating with Sage but felt it didn’t cater for their needs at a group level.  Having evaluated many products, they chose AccountsIQ cloud accounting software; an affordable middle market Cloud accounting platform which could be tailored to meet the complex reporting requirements of the group.

“The other cloud-based systems we looked at, seemed to be created for small enterprises.  We wanted a system which could be truly adapted to and flexible for our international group needs.  AccountsIQ suited us better than Xero, QuickBooks Online and SAP and so we began the process of integrating AccountsIQ with iSAMS.” Finance and Operations Director Tim Carey-Yard.

“We were really pleased to work with Bellevue on such a pioneering project and are delighted they are using more and more features of the software.  Since going live with Bellevue, we have successfully implemented AccountsIQ alongside iSAMS in a number of other schools in the UK and internationally”, explained AccountsIQ’s UK MD Darren Cran.

System integration with iSAMS MIS software

Both systems were seamlessly integrated and installed in September, within a few months of signing contracts.  The benefit of the integrated applications is that the iSAMS MIS system automatically updates all fee payer and student information in the AccountsIQ Sales Ledger, ensuring all data is completely aligned in the two systems, avoiding any duplication of data entry. The Fee Billing module of iSAMS generates all the invoices for students (with the ability to have multiple fee payers for individual students or multiple students for multiple fee payers) and passes the invoices automatically via an API link to the accounting system. The accounts system then takes control of the process and the balances are updated within AccountsIQ, as fees are paid, partially or in full.

“The integration with iSAMS gives us a much slicker process than we had for billing and the fee run is so much easier.  It cuts down our processing time enormously” explains Rosie Bridgman, Group Management Accountant at Bellevue.

Group reporting

The Bellevue Education group has 12 independent schools throughout the UK and schools in Switzerland and Qatar, which means the finance team needs to account for income and payments in multiple currencies, and produce consolidated group accounts.  AccountsIQ can be customised to create bespoke reports and comes with a library of 250 pre-built reports.  Bellevue created their own management reports in MS Excel, which can be automatically updated from the AccountsIQ database via an “add-in” link.

Unlike other applications which encourage the exclusive use of in-built Business Intelligence tools, AccountsIQ also gives users the option to plug in existing reports modelled in Excel.  Businesses like Bellevue can then focus on becoming familiar with the software without the worry of recreating reporting packs in the early stages.  “AccountsIQ’s Excel Add-In gives us continuity in our management reporting while we are still learning how to get the most out of the system.  It maps live and accurate data from AccountsIQ to my existing management reports” adds Tim Carey-Yard.

Day-to-day efficiencies

Rosie Bridgman describes how AccountsIQ has made her working processes easier, “Day-to-day reports for sending out invoices are done in the click of a button rather than us having to find the document, scan it, attach it and email it.  The email features are great and we can send emails centrally from any school.” 

She continues, “The ability to attach documents to processes saves so much time not just day-to-day but also when we prepare for audit. Other processes are also much smoother such as bank reconciliation. ”

Further plans

Now that the system is successfully installed, the next phase includes exploring AccountsIQ’s multi-company functionality further.  “There is a lot of functionality we have yet to explore such as customising dashboards and creating live dashboard reports which consolidate our accounts.  The system’s Excel integration has allowed us to implement the system quickly and plug in our usual reports, but AccountsIQ will allow us to do so much more. We also want to implement AccountsIQ’s Purchase-to-Pay process which will give us better management of costs versus budget.” Tim Carey-Yard.

Rosie Bridgman adds, “The real benefit AccountsIQ brings is the time we save every day on tedious and time-consuming tasks.  So much of it is automated in the system.” 

Tim Carey-Yard adds, “The multi-company functionality allows us to work in any of our companies and we plan to implement the consolidation module to enable us to enter consolidation adjustment journals and produce consolidated management accounts and multi-company.”

Contact us to find out more:

If you’d like to chat to us about our approach to accounting for schools and academies and what our software can do for you, just get in touch. Call us on +44 (0)203 598 7350 or email sales@accountsiq.com.

Or download our brochure to read more about our school-specific software functionality.

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As ardent supporters of the HMC, we are thoroughly looking forward to this years’ Annual Conference 'Celebrate the Difference' in Belfast.

Originally created by our two co-founders, Alastair and Greg at Rugby School, iSAMS is now the trusted MIS partner of over 50% of HMC schools. This year, we are proud to have welcomed the following HMC schools to our growing community:

Blundell's School

Bury Grammar School

Cheltenham College

Dulwich College

Eltham College

Fettes College

King's College Taunton

Malvern College

Mill Hill

Shiplake College

Trinity School

Wrekin College

iSAMS was the first school administration management information system (MIS) to be entirely web-based. Its clever design combines a single database and suite of portals and apps to give you bespoke management of all academic, pastoral and administrative information. Our accessible, intuitive system is perfect for everyone involved at your school. From data administrators and staff to students and parents.

Together, we aim to help you make a difference by:

-          Innovating and simplifying the way you manage your academic, pastoral and administrative information;

-          Equipping your staff with the tools they need to ensure excellence for your pupils

-          Bringing your entire school community together using iSAMS.

Not only that, we offer a fully managed service, from system installation and data transfer, through to training, report creation, system set-up and ongoing support. To date we have helped over 700 schools migrate to iSAMS.

If you’re attending this years’ conference, we’d love to talk to you. Jamie and Lisa will be on Stand 7 for the duration of the conference and would be delighted to talk to you. We will also be serving fresh coffee, as well as offering the chance to win an Executive Box for eight people at a Northampton Saints rugby match this season – so please stop by to say hello.

If you’re not attending the conference, or you’d prefer to organise a call or meeting with us instead, please email us via sales@isams.co.uk or call 01604 659100. You can also visit our website for additional information www.isams.com

[post_title] => iSAMS sponsor HMC Annual Conference [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => isams-sponsor-hmc-annual-conference [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2017-09-25 16:39:50 [post_modified_gmt] => 0000-00-00 00:00:00 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) ) [post_count] => 11 [current_post] => -1 [in_the_loop] => [post] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 36149 [post_author] => 56 [post_date] => 2021-09-03 11:03:18 [post_date_gmt] => 2021-09-03 10:03:18 [post_content] => In 2020, the UK’s Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport conducted a Cyber Security Breaches Survey with a section focused specifically on the education sector. Its findings made for perturbing reading. The results of the survey showed that 41% of primary schools, 76% of secondary schools and 80% of further education institutions had identified at least one cyber-attack or security breach in the previous 12 months. Hackers and cybercriminals appear to be increasingly turning away from larger organisations in favour of targeting smaller institutions – seen as low hanging fruit – that may be less well equipped to deal with a scam or hacking attempt. The fallout from a security breach can have devastating consequences for schools. Previous attacks have resulted in significant financial losses, sensitive data on students, parents and staff being lost or published online and have even forced temporary school closures. With schools firmly in the crosshairs of cybercriminals, the importance of a secure digital infrastructure has never been greater. One of the most effective ways to protect against cyber scammers is training staff to spot phishing attacks and malicious downloads, and implementing safety checks such as 2FA (two-factor authentication) for all school systems.
Hackers and cybercriminals appear to be increasingly turning away from larger organisations in favour of targeting smaller institutions
Cybercriminals can embed malware in email attachments, which if downloaded can spread through a school’s network to steal confidential information and demand a ransom for its release. Phishing attacks typically involve a scammer posing as a trusted source – such as HR staff – and asking for confidential information which can then be used to access school systems. Cybercriminals work to identify attack vectors, known as weaknesses in an organisation’s digital infrastructure. School servers, if improperly maintained, can become a further vector used to infiltrate a school’s various systems. Moving from on-premise servers to a managed cloud-hosted environment can protect against these vulnerabilities by offering sophisticated safeguarding technologies and protocols that may otherwise be unaffordable to individual schools. Managed cloud-hosted solutions include performance and security services that protect against DDOS (distributed denial of service) attacks, and web application firewalls that automatically prevent hacking attempts. Cloud-hosted solutions also offer enterprise managed detection and response (MDR), which protects data from attacks, whilst being monitored by a team of security experts who continually pull data from servers and scan it for threats and attacks. Another means of protecting servers involves regular server maintenance which ensures servers are running on the latest instance and prevents cybercriminals from exploiting outdated or unpatched systems. Lastly, managed services back up servers hourly, so in the event of an incident, it can be restored without losing days or months worth of crucial data.
If you’d like to learn more about the cybersecurity risks in schools, the methods of scammers and how to protect against them, join us at our upcoming webinar: Threats to schools and how to mitigate them. The webinar will be led by the BBC’s first dedicated cybersecurity journalist, Joe Tidy, who will explain the ever-evolving world of cyber scams in schools using real-world examples and provide some top tips on keeping your school secure. We’ll also be joined by iSAMS managing director Alastair Price, who will give an overview of the measures in place to protect iSAMS schools. Register for free here. [post_title] => The growing importance of cybersecurity in schools [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => the-growing-importance-of-cybersecurity-in-schools [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2021-09-03 11:03:18 [post_modified_gmt] => 2021-09-03 10:03:18 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://ie-today.co.uk/?p=36149 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [comment_count] => 0 [current_comment] => -1 [found_posts] => 11 [max_num_pages] => 0 [max_num_comment_pages] => 0 [is_single] => [is_preview] => [is_page] => [is_archive] => 1 [is_date] => [is_year] => [is_month] => [is_day] => [is_time] => [is_author] => [is_category] => [is_tag] => 1 [is_tax] => [is_search] => [is_feed] => [is_comment_feed] => [is_trackback] => [is_home] => [is_privacy_policy] => [is_404] => [is_embed] => [is_paged] => [is_admin] => [is_attachment] => [is_singular] => [is_robots] => [is_favicon] => [is_posts_page] => [is_post_type_archive] => [query_vars_hash:WP_Query:private] => c267c01113f01380abb5dcbf4da8929a [query_vars_changed:WP_Query:private] => [thumbnails_cached] => [stopwords:WP_Query:private] => [compat_fields:WP_Query:private] => Array ( [0] => query_vars_hash [1] => query_vars_changed ) [compat_methods:WP_Query:private] => Array ( [0] => init_query_flags [1] => parse_tax_query ) )
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iSAMS

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About

Founded in 2007, iSAMS is the market leader in cloud-based, multi-platform school management solutions.  Transforming the way schools store, manage and communicate information, iSAMS offers world-class school management solutions that are intuitive to use, flexible and accessible globally.

iSAMS has quickly established itself as a leading and credible MIS partner, working with over 1,100 schools across the world.  Our experienced and dedicated team remains determined in their quest to provide outstanding solutions for all our clients.  Constantly developing, updating and improving the MIS with its portfolio of integrated modules, portals and apps, iSAMS helps schools to streamline and enhance their information management while they focus on delivering excellence for their students.

Some of the world’s most prestigious schools rely on our management system to support them in providing a world-class education. If you would like to know more about iSAMS, we would relish the opportunity to talk with you.

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news

Schools should invest in monitoring student wellbeing

iSAMS explains how systems can be put in place to help support teachers when it comes to monitoring student wellbeing

Read more
news

AccountsIQ and iSAMS join forces to offer iFinance

iFinance has been developed as an integrated solution to streamline academic, pastoral, administrative and fee-billing elements

Read more
news

Leading learning through pastoral care and GDPR compliance

iSAMS explore how investing in a technology solution can help schools support students and comply with impending GDPR Law

Read more

iSAMS News

The growing importance of cybersecurity in schools

Find out more

Seven ways to save your teachers time every week

Find out more

The dos and don’ts of emergency communications in schools

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How COBIS member schools can benefit from a MIS

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Schools should invest in monitoring student wellbeing

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AccountsIQ and iSAMS join forces to offer iFinance

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Leading learning through pastoral care and GDPR compliance

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Kingsworth School grows with flexible accounting software

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Academic reporting goes mobile

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Bellevue Education chooses AccountsIQ and iSAMS solution

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iSAMS sponsor HMC Annual Conference

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