University of Liverpool Maths School

During the pandemic, the University of Liverpool Maths School needed a team they could trust to refurbish a legacy building and install their new and innovative technology. Learn more about why they chose Dataspire to deliver these services and much more.

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About the University of Liverpool Maths School

The University of Liverpool Maths School (ULMaS) is the third specialist mathematics school to open in the UK and the first specialist mathematics school in the North of England, offering A-Level students (aged 16-19) the opportunity to delve deeper into mathematical theory.

ULMaS hosts an exciting and ambitious learning community where everyone shares the same passion for problem-solving, analytical thinking and solution creation.  Students with high potential in the mathematical sciences are put through a rigorous but very supportive educational programme to prepare them for the most challenging STEM degrees and careers.


About Dataspire Solutions

Dataspire Solutions is an Education Technology (EdTech) company that provides a host of IT services and support to schools and academies across the country – helping to create confidence in the use of technology and to improve outcomes for children and young people

While for over 15 years, Dataspire has primarily helped schools and academies with their technology, its ethos has always been led by education and the personnel that deliver it, and as a result, Dataspire staff fully understand, react and respond to schools’ operational priorities in a manner that is the most appropriate and the most effective.


Our services include:

  • Strategic ICT Planning for Schools
  • Managed ICT Support
  • Education Focussed Broadband Connectivity
  • Safeguarding Support
  • Cloud and Network Infrastructure Support
  • Technical and User Training
  • Procurement Management
  • Project Management
  • New School Build Services
  • Telephony Services
  • Audio Visual Support


The Challenge:

The University of Liverpool Maths School (ULMaS) is a brand new school that is connected to the University of Liverpool. Based on the University’s campus, the new school was situated in the Pilkington building which had been out of use for a while and in need of a light refurbishment before being turned into a modern, functioning school building. As the Pilkington building is still located on the campus it was also still connected, in part, to the university’s network via server cabs and active switches. As these were still being used by the university, a new and separate IT infrastructure alongside robust connectivity was required to provide 21st Century teaching and learning, into the pioneering Maths Schools.

The Pilkington Building spans 4 floors including the basement and accommodates the first ever year group that enrolled in September 2020. At this point, only 9 rooms were available for all activities including teaching, business administration and the hosting of ULMaS community outreach.

Dataspire was enlisted to support the appointed building contractors, working together to complete a fully functioning school refurbishment which began at the end of June.


The Solution:

Because the building was in a reasonable condition, Dataspire was able to access the building and begin delivery and installation of a comprehensive ICT infrastructure.

To help ULMaS decide which solutions would be best suited to their needs, we hosted a series of supplier workshops whereby ULMaS could see a variety of devices and solutions. For example, interactive boards were presented and demonstrated by SMART, Promethean, View Sonic and others to see the software behind the boards and understand which solution was the best fit.

We also showcased a range of printer manufacturers which allowed the school to make energy-efficient choices in terms of paper, energy and ink consumption.

Despite the delays (appointment of the building contractor and the pandemic), Dataspire was able to work closely with the eventual contractors to identify spaces to work around, begin cabling works and reinforce walls for Audio Visual specifications. Where any barriers may have occurred we were able to collaborate and find solutions that would allow us to complete the job, and on time.

Between the middle and end of August, Dataspire had installed everything. The only element that arrived slightly later was the delivery of laptops as during that time there was a worldwide manufacturer shortage. However, we were able to provide alternatives so as not to disrupt any lesson time due to commence that September.

In January 2021, Dataspire also provided a sandbox environment for the school, as being a Maths school many of the students go on to learn wider STEM subjects such as coding and can now freely explore these options and learn techniques using the sandbox solution without impacting the wider network.


The Outcome:

Regardless of the clear challenges that were present at the time, Dataspire was able to deliver, install and implement a fully working ICT solution, ready for all teaching and learning on the first day of the University of Liverpool Maths School opening.

The ongoing relationship between ULMaS Senior Leadership and Dataspire continues to be a strong and positive one as Damian Haigh, Headteacher at University of Liverpool Maths School, said:

“Dataspire has helped us through the whole process of designing and commissioning an ICT solution for our school. In spite of the huge challenges of the Coronavirus pandemic, made even more complex by the fact that our school opened in temporary facilities whose refurbishment was also delayed by the pandemic, Dataspire ensured we had a fully functional wired and Wi-Fi network, staff and student computers, and much else. More than this, they were happy to support our preferences even where they were quite different to those of most normal schools. Amongst other eccentricities, we use a hybrid of Google Apps for Education and Office 365, and this has worked smoothly for us because of the support that Dataspire has provided.”


The Dataspire Promise

  • We will work closely with you to understand your needs
  • We will provide best value on our services and solutions, to ensure you get the most from your investment in technology
  • We will help you to deliver your ICT Vision, now and into the future
  • We will provide reliable support that you can trust

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