Zyxel Networks calls on schools and trusts to consider all options for new infrastructure investment

By Simon Meredith | 20th November 2023

With budgets under more pressure than ever, educational establishments can get top performance, quality and reliability without having to pay higher prices for premium brands

Wokingham, 20 November 2023 – Zyxel Networks is urging the UK’s schools and colleges that are looking to upgrade their network infrastructure before their end of the year and over the holiday period to broaden their horizons and consider all the options and possibilities before they make their crucial purchasing decisions.

Budget pressure on schools is growing. In September, the National Foundation for Educational Research (NFER) warned that schools are having to make substantial cuts due to extra financial pressures1. Despite the overall budget for schools increasing by £3.5 billion for 2023-24, almost half (49 percent) of primaries, and 41 percent of secondaries expect to see a deficit for 2022-23.

A recent study of UK trusts2 found that almost one fifth (19 percent) of chief executives lack confidence about their financial sustainability in the future – a huge increase on last year, when only 4 percent said they were not confident about long-term finances. Fewer than half of respondents to the National School Trust Survey, organised by the Confederation of School Trusts (CST), said they felt very or quite confident in their financial sustainability.

Rachel Rothwell, Senior Regional Director, UK and Ireland at Zyxel Networks, said that as a result of all this pressure, schools looking to upgrade their infrastructure need to give even more consideration to IT investment decisions.

“Schools and trusts were already under massive pressure to make cutbacks and this year’s RAAC (reinforced autoclaved aerated concrete) debacle has added to that. At the same time, they are expected to provide the latest technology and ensure the online safety of pupils. They are having to think long and hard about how they can reduce costs without having an impact on teaching and they now have very little room for manoeuvre. One area in which they can still make real savings without compromising is in their choice of networking technologies. While the official advice might be to purchase products from some of the more expensive brand names, solutions from Zyxel and other manufacturers can do just as good a job for much less investment.”

This is especially true when it comes to the latest technologies, such as WiFi 6/6E and WiFi 7, multi-gigabit switching and multi-layered security, she continued. “Zyxel has excellent, fast, reliable wireless, switching and unified threat management solutions that are highly effective and much more affordable. Our MSP partners can configure and support all of our devices though the Nebula cloud management platform, so there really is no reason why schools can’t get the very best and latest technologies, without paying a premium.”

Zyxel recently became one of the first networking vendors to launch a WiFi 7 access point. Last month, it also has also announced a new range of firewall appliances that provide multi-layered protection at the gateway to the network.

Picture: Rachel Rothwell, Zyxel Networks.

1 – https://www.tes.com/magazine/news/general/school-funding-nearly-half-primary-and-special-schools-face-budget-deficit

2 – https://www.tes.com/magazine/news/general/school-funding-academy-trusts-budget-fears

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