Techs4Education provides schools with a comprehensive range of technology solutions and IT support services. Whilst there is often a focus on the IT and support elements of our service, I want to take the opportunity to look at the telephony solutions we offer schools.
It is important for schools to start looking ahead when it comes to telephony now. In 2025, BT has announced it will switch off its old fashioned copper based ISDN (integrated service digital network) and PSTN (Public Switched Telephone Network) network and let digitally based Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) become the new standard.
So what is Voice Over Internet Protocol or VoIP?
VoIP is a communications service that allows users to make calls using the internet rather than the traditional copper phone lines. It is significantly cheaper than using traditional PSTN or ISDN lines and incredibly reliable if you have good connectivity.
Some schools have already started to migrate to VoIP telephony because of the flexibility it offers and its ability to integrate with existing and new technologies.
Techs4Education now only sells VoIP telephony solutions to schools. VoIP can be hosted on site using an on-premise server or hosted virtually in the Cloud. This gives schools a good choice of telephony options to suit their budget, size and functionality demanded.
Additional benefits of VoIP telephony for schools:
• Support – Should any problem occur with a hosted cloud VoIP telephony solution, backup data centres with recovery procedures in place will keep a school’s system up and running with data accessible. T4E provides full support for on-premis VoIP telephony solutions to ensure this level of continuity.
• Cost control – most VoIP phone systems are based on paying a monthly fixed fee and most providers are committed to keeping call costs low and usually offer internal calls for free
• Flexible – VoIP – phone system can be accessed by school staff and pupils, if required, from a desk phone or anywhere with an internet connection, from multiple devices (tablets, laptops, smartphones). New users and numbers can be added at the touch of a button.
• Integrates with existing technologies – Allows integration of voice, video, chat, text and enables dynamic, interactive conferencing across your communications and phone solution. Useful for remote learning, accessing live education events, inter school collaboration projects.
• Microsoft or Google ? – VoIP solutions offer carrier grade communications that will integrate into Microsoft or Google. VoIP ensures a higher level of service due to its ability to monitor lines and manage traffic efficiently.
• Security – Cloud VoIP phone systems check for vulnerabilities and implement high levels of cyber security to protect schools from the most common threats – fraud, spoofing and phishing.
Telephony has made huge advances in the last ten years and it is important that the education sector takes advantage of the benefits VoIP brings. Now is the time of year when schools are looking to confirm what projects they want to undertake during the summer holidays, so it’s great time to review telephony and look at the options available.