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Tech tips to empower remote learning​

Coronavirus (COVID-19):
Tech tips to quickly enable remote learning from home

Easy-to-implement solutions to support continuity of learning if pupils or teachers can't attend class​

As schools, colleges and universities prepare for the possibility of increased pupil isolation, or even temporary site closure due the COVID-19 Coronavirus outbreak, we’re having lots of conversations with academic leaders and their IT staff about solutions that can support remote learning.​

The good news is, there’s lots of easy-to-implement technology solutions out there. And the even better news is that many are free, have free trial options, or are low cost and don’t have to cost you a fortune. ​ Here’s some ideas:​

Microsoft Teams​

Microsoft Teams is great for remote learning – and it’s free for education customers1


Maximise the remote learning experience with a noise cancelling headset


Make feedback on homework personal with Showbie – Now the Pro version is free


Get a free trial of Cisco Umbrella to help protect against internet threats on any device

Microsoft Teams – It’s perfect for remote learning and it’s free1 for education customers​

Teams for Education

If your school or university is using Office 365 for Education, you’ll already have Teams – it’s included as standard. Teams is a really simple way to establish remote learning quickly. ​
If you don’t have Office 365 for Education which includes Teams, you can sign up now for free1.​​

​Microsoft Office 365 A1 is available to Education customers at no cost1 - and it always has been.​ ​ ​

Sign up for free here​1

Get going quickly​

Check out this blog post. It’s designed to help educators and IT admins quickly learn what they need to get started in delivering remote learning.​

Learn from anywhere​

Class Teams can quickly be created, enabling learning to continue irrespective of location. ​

1:1 or group sessions​

You can have discussions, share files, issue and assess homework, and have voice and video calls either 1:1, or in groups.​

Access on any device​

Teams works on desktop, tablet, phone and web browser - so students can access from ANY device.​

Maximise the remote learning experience and minimise distractions with a noise cancelling headset​

Headsets for Education

Headsets for students and teachers​

Whilst Teams makes learning or delivering a lesson from home a reality, it can’t help avoid the background noise that comes with home life.

Pets, siblings, TV and radio all create distractions that could interrupt teaching and learning, but there is a simple solution - a headset. ​

​Look out for headsets with noise cancellation. They use advanced microphones to monitor and counter ambient noise, so you can hear and be heard better.

Browse our range of headsets ​ ​ ​

Jabra, Poly & more​

We work with world-class headset brands like Jabra and Poly. There’s options for all budgets, with some brands reducing prices4 specifically to help customers scale up for remote communications quickly.  

Consider a hygiene refresh to re-use old headsets​

If you already have headsets and want to re-deploy them, then ask us about a ‘hygiene refresh’ which replaces things like foam mics or soft ear covers.​

We’re UC Specialists​

Our UC Devices team are on hand to give you free, impartial advice on choosing the right headset or hygiene refresh for your needs.​

Showbie makes virtual feedback on assignments personal - and now you can access the Pro version for free2

Teams for Education

Showbie is an app built for Apple devices, though it does allow log in from any Windows based PC/laptop, Chromebook, or even an Android phone.

It combines all the essential tools for setting homework and assignments; giving feedback and communication, as well as sharing documents.

Teachers and students can access Showbie from anywhere.
What’s more, until 31 July 2020, schools can now access Showbie Pro for free2. Ask us for details.​

Learn more about Showbie here​

Need additional devices?

Many of the solutions we've mentioned on this page can be accessed from any device - which means remote learning can be a reality using the existing devices your school, pupils or their parents already own. But if you find you need to top up, then BT’s team of Education IT Specialists have lots of experience in supporting schools with their device needs.

If you need additional devices, or you'd like support with your plans, talk to us today. Don't forget to ask about trade in options which can be a really cost-efficient way to refresh.

Browse our full range of devices

Free trial of Cisco Umbrella3 - A cloud security and web filtering platform that protects any device, anywhere

Teams for Education

Cisco Umbrella is your first line of defence against internet threats, protecting users against malware, phishing, and command and control call-backs.

Hundreds of schools and colleges already rely on Umbrella to deliver fast, secure access across campuses and reduce malware infections.  The service is all cloud-delivered via a simple web interface, so there's minimal maintenance.

Because it's delivered via the cloud, Umbrella makes it easy to protect users everywhere in minutes. BT's Education IT Specialists will be happy to arrange your 14 day free trial.3

Block malware, C2 call-backs, and phishing

Detect attacks before they are launched

Receive a weekly security report, straight into your inbox

No hardware to install or software to maintain

Keep in touch with Apple FaceTime

Apple FaceTime

FaceTime is an easy way for students to communicate with their peers and teacher. If your child is feeling out of touch from their friends, it’s easy to FaceTime from Apple to Apple device. Facetime comes readily installed on Apple devices, all you need is the other persons Apple ID or telephone number and you can chat away.

Learn more about Apple in education here​


BT Skills for Tomorrow

BT Skills for Tomorrow

BT’s Skills for Tomorrow programme offers free resources for both Teachers and Parents. With free resources for the classroom and advice for parents on how to keep their children safe online, there’s everything you’ll need for the next few weeks of schooling from home. Take a look at the online courses and learning from Internet Matters and Barefoot Computing, you’ll be a techy teacher in now time.

Learn more about Skills for Tomorrow

BT’s commitment during COVID-19

For those who are home-schooling or taking on the role as teacher while the schools are closed, we’re offering our support and doing everything we can to keep people connect.

  • We’re removing all caps on your home broadband, so every customer has unlimited data to use whether working from home, keeping the kids connected to school or streaming the latest films.
  • We’re constantly monitoring our broadband network and doing everything we can to continue to support and provide brilliant service to you and the critical services we support, and have built in more than 10 times the capacity needed for everyday use. Our mobile network is designed to support extra calls that people will make to keep in touch with friends, family and colleagues.

These are just a few things we’re doing to help schools and parents; you can find out how we’re supporting our customers here:

Learn more​

We know the coming weeks will be a challenging time for our education customers. BT's team of Education IT Specialists are here to help and support you – just reach out.

Things you need to know

  1. Office 365 for Education is available for free to qualifiying educational establishments.  All you need is a valid school email address to sign up. You can check eligibility and sign up here.
  2. The standard version of Showbie has always been free, but Showbie are currently offering access to Showbie Pro until 31st July 2020. Customers must complete an application form in order to do this accessible here
  3. Your BT IT Specialist can arrange your free 14 day Cisco Umbrella trial. By creating a trial, you agree to the Umbrella Terms of Service and Privacy Policy and you understand that your personal information may be transferred for processing outside your country of residence, where standards of data protection may be different. By Umbrella Terms of Service and Privacy.
  4. Subject to availability.

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