IBM and Bancroft launch specialised cloud-based education programme

IBM has announced a partnership with Bancroft, a provider of specialised services for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities, that will supply a cloud-based educational programme.

The collaboration will enable staff and students to access more than 300 educational and clinical applications securely via an iPad.

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The programme will continue Bancroft's recent iPad project which provides instructional and assistive technology apps to its special education team. The programme helps educators engage with students in basic subjects like maths and English, while also aiding disabled pupils overcome physical challenges.

Bancroft is utilising IBM Maas360, a mobile management and security offering that is part of IBM's MobileFirst portfolio, in order to manage app updates for the iPads. The cloud-based infrastructure also grants teachers and therapists greater flexibility by allowing them the option of updating and customising the curriculum being offered.

Beth Greer, a special education teacher at Bancroft, stressed the importance of her company's partnership with IBM.

"iPads and apps are truly revolutionary tools for the Bancroft community," she said. "Given the number of apps we use, successful app management is essential to our program's success. We simply could not manage and securely deploy our iPad program without IBM."

IBM Maas360 also gives staff a greater sense of security, allowing them to remotely lock and wipe data if a device is lost or compromised.

Michael King, vice president of IBM's global education industry, believes that his firm's cloud platform allows Bancroft's staff to focus on education rather than software upgrades and IT issues.

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"Bancroft's use of cloud-based mobile technology is enabling growth in individuals who have been challenged to speak or write before, which is truly transformational," he said.