Open source firm chosen for schools IT framework deal

An open source company has, for the first time, been chosen to become an accredited IT services supplier for schools and colleges across the UK.

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An open source company has, for the first time, been chosen to become an accredited IT services supplier for schools and colleges across the UK.

Twelve companies, including Sirius Corporation have been chosen for Becta 's “Software for Educational Institutions Framework” agreement.

John Spencer, Head of Education at Sirius said: “We are pleased to have shown that open source software is ready for educational institutions and that Sirius has the resources to support its increasing use.

“Students, schools and the taxpayer can now use open source software with the assurance of an EU-backed scheme."

The framework agreement was let by the Office of Government Commerce’s OGCbuying.solutions.

Framework deals allow public sector organisations to purchase IT products and services, without having to conduct a full European Union procurement process.

Becta has had a controversial relationship with Open Source software. In May, it announces that it was referring Microsoft to the competition authorities over interoperability issues in Office.

Last week Microsoft and Becta announced that they were close to reaching agreement.

While accepting Sirius on the Framework Agreement is a major step forward for open source advocates in the UK, it does not guarantee that educational institutes will deploy open source products.

Microsoft and other traditional suppliers to the education sector are certain to fight hard to hold on to their dominance of this lucrative market.

Now read the Sirius blog on Computerworld UK

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