Insurance of Mobile Devices

The Dilemma…

An interesting dilemma that has come about recently for many schools that intend to issue school purchased mobile devices relates to that of insurance.  Under the current guidelines of the NSSCF all devices purchased need to have associated insurance cover in case of theft or damage to the device. While this is not unlike all devices currently in schools it is when we inteed to use these devices as a ‘personal device’ that goes home with students that the cost of insurance dramatically increases.

Background… the full story is very long, this is just an exert

In short this is how NSSCF funding works – Each school was requested to submit how many computers it has on grounds allocated to students. At this time also the number of students in the school from only years 9 – 12 (year 7 and 8 are not included in the calculation).

 

For example

School ‘A’ had 200 computers and they had 600 students enrolled in year 9 – 12 it was deemed that the school would be issued with funding to purchase 400 more devices before 31st December 2011 at $1000,00 each ($400,000). Along with this number School ‘A’ received money for what was called ‘Infrastructure’ but known as on-cost funding. So for 400 devices schools received x1.5 that dollar figure in on-cost funding. ($600,000) This money is to be spent before the 31st December 2013.

I will post the guidelines on how these dollars can be spent as per the instructions of the Catholic Education Office of Western Australia in another article in the future.

Back to the Insurance dilemma…

So now, knowing this, schools had to determine how they could best spend the money on devices. In 2011 I have seen a dramatic increase in the number of schools planning to implement iPad devices as a personal device. While I agree with this concept and the merit it is very clear that the cost of insurance a device that travels outside the school grounds is of great concern.

The numbers are concerning when schools have been requested to keep these devices for a total of four years. So speaking to my dilemma specifically, to insure a total of 210 iPads for three years the first quote with an excess of $150.00 worked out to around $20,000 per annum. Now because the device to replace total only would cost $839.00inc GST making the excess higher than $150.00 starts to have drawbacks.

So how do schools justify a total cost of a program costing $178,000 but insurance costing on top of this roughly $60,000 over three years. Effectively I could replace one third of the fleet of iPads and that’s assuming that over that time one third actually get broken.

So this is the dilemma, insurance companies have not moved with the times. It is this issue that could inevitably cost an extraordinary amount of money for schools. Now in qualifying this, Insurance can be paid out of ‘on-cost’ funding but it is my opinion that this is not what this money should be spent on. As I investigate this further I will update posts with the decisions made in schools regarding how they will handle insurance and its cost.

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