We’ll keep you up to date with the latest news and developments within the ICT industry and education through our schools Extranet, Twitter (@DCC_CommServ) and newsletters.
- Autumn term 2018/19 newsletter.pdf
- Spring term 2018/19 newsletter.pdf
- Summer term 2018/19 newsletter.pdf
Hints, tips and updates
Cleaning your printer safely
As schools start to begin the process of re-opening, we know you’ll be looking at the best ways to clean and disinfect your equipment. Here are some helpful tips for safely cleaning your printer, MDF or copier.
Make sure your device is powered down and unplugged before cleaning.
What to use
- Do not spray any cleaning agent directly onto the machine, instead spray the cleaning agent onto your cloth and then wipe surfaces
- Use a soft lint free cloth that will not damage the equipment
- Use IPA (isopropyl alcohol) or ethanol for disinfection
- Do not use anything that contains bleach, ammonia or other harsh cleaning solvents
- Use a glass cleaner on the plate glass surface
What to clean
On returning to work it’s important to clean the full outside of your MDF and maintain this as part of your cleaning schedule. In addition the following should be cleaned regularly :
- The panel (screen and keys)
- The document feeder and the document glass
- Handles of paper trays
Make sure all surfaces are fully dry before plugging your device back in. For advice on cleaning your specific device, please refer to the manufacturer’s handbook.
Shared Engineer Service… but not as you know it
On the announcement of the national lock down, the Shared Engineer Service quickly adopted new ways of working in order to continue to provide you with a responsive and effective ICT support service tailored to your needs. Rather than our normal scheduled visits, we are monitoring and maintaining school ICT networks remotely – regularly checking backups, the health of servers and antivirus.
Most importantly, we are providing ICT support to school staff on demand and site visits where necessary. We are here to help and to provide support to you in whichever way we can, whether you are currently based at home or in your school.
If you have an issue or a query please log a call on our Shared Engineer Portal at the following address:
It is important that you use our Portal rather than contacting your designated engineer directly. By using the portal if your usual engineer is unavailable, we will still be able to respond to your call quickly by reassigning the work to another engineer – this helps us to provide a more responsive and flexible service.
We hope to be able to resume our normal scheduled onsite ICT support visits soon and will be working with schools in our move towards this.
Have you thought about a network check?
To help schools prepare for the return of pupils, the Shared Engineer Service are offering full onsite network health checks.
Many schools have ICT equipment that hasn’t been used for a long time and the focus of the visit is to check all devices, whiteboards and projectors etc in readiness. A considerable number of schools have already taken advantage of this offer.
If you would like to arrange a visit for your school then please log a call on our Shared Engineer Portal at the following address – https://ictportal.durham.gov.uk
MIS Team Training
Whilst we’re unable to provide training in the usual face to face way, the MIS Team are offering online and remote training to staff familiar with SIMS, covering a range of topics – End of Year procedures, New Administrators, SIMS.net Core, FMS, Attendance, Reporting, SEN, Personnel, Behaviour and Achievement, Power BI and SIMS & FMS Top Tips.
We’re continuing to monitor the situation and as soon as were able to safely do so, we’ll start to provide training at the Educational Development Centre again.
To book online/ remote training and for updates on when regular training will resume, please keep your eye on the extranet.
Is now the time to do some housekeeping?
Calling all data managers and administrators – have you thought about SIMS housekeeping?
- How tidy is your data?
- How accurate is the information you hold on pupils/students/staff/contacts?
- Do you have regular routines to ensure data is accurate and up to date?
- Are you familiar with housekeeping routines in SIMS.net?
- Do you run database diagnostics on a regular basis and deal with any issues which arise?
Now is the perfect time to carry out reviews and get everything up to date. Check the extranet for further information, guides and reports which can help you in this process.