About Westoe Crown Primary School

Westoe is a very large primary school in the heart of South Shields on the north-east coast of England. Built in 2004 as part of the Westoe Crown Village development, the school offers a lively, friendly learning environment to local children from 3 years old (nursery) to 11 years old (Year 6).

"My Experience of RM Integris has been a really positive one, it is one that I can recommend whole-heartedly and without any hesitation."

Steve Price - Headmaster

Over the years, Westoe Crown Primary School has had many management information systems (MIS), and none of them was quite up to the job. Systems integration and ease of use were recurring difficulties. The school provided its own add-on solutions, to connect one system with another, while senior leaders cast a wary eye on the future - they needed flexible access to higher and higher volumes of data. Westoe already had a specific issue to contend with: size. It's a primary school with more than 600 children and 23 classes, so administration systems need to be robust at the best of times.

The solution

As part of a tendering process with the Local Authority in 2012, Westoe joined forces with other schools in South Tyneside, and the mission was clear: find a provider that could meet the management information system needs of the area's schools. The selection process was interrogative and thorough. Head Teacher Steve Price and his colleagues analysed the quotations and met face-to-face with providers. The quotations were an early indicator of attitude.

"It was obvious that RM Integris was the provider with the most cost-effective solutions, but also the most clear and honest solution. Lots of other quotes had hidden costs and were overly complicated in terminology. We have found that Integris has integrated really well with the text system that we have got for contacting the parents and it has been invaluable."
Steve Price - Headmaster

Persuaded that RM Integris was the best contender at the tender stage, Price invited RM to take Westoe through a "try before you buy" phase. He was concerned about response times within a cloud-based system, especially because the school's previous MIS was so slow. Price explains "The consultant came out, set up a dummy account with lots of data, to test how speedily the queries would come back. It was a thousand times better than the system that we had, so my fears were allayed before migration." Another concern after migration is ease of use. New systems take time to learn and old habits die hard. But here, too, Westoe are positive:

"The actual change over and integration went very smoothly, we ran two systems for about two weeks and then just forgot about the old system altogether."
Celia Handy - School Operations Manager

On top of that, RM provided schools with two days' worth of training for office staff, senior leaders and managers. There's an online support system, a help button, and a support officer in the Local Authority.

Last, but certainly not least, is the question of cost. And here Steve Price is adamant that having gone for a less expensive provider in the past, quality was compromised. Having chosen RM Integris on the basis of quality, the good news is that Westoe is also getting excellent value for money.

"It's cost is significantly less expensive than the other well-known school system administration providers - which means significant savings for us - we're talking thousands of pounds, not hundreds."
Steve Price - Headmaster

About RM Integris

RM Integris is a centrally hosted and web-delivered solution that offers access to school information from the classroom, office and home, for teachers, pupils and their parents. You can access the information when and where you want to. You can also save money on expensive infrastructure and the technical skills required to maintain locally hosted solutions.

To find out more about how RM Integris can help your school flourish, please visit www.rm.com/integris

Categories: Case studies, Cost savings

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