Need help setting up a lab

  barryheed 05 Mar 12
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I need to set up a lab in a classroom and it must be able to cater for students studying multi-media subjects like photography and film-making. It must have 20 client workstations, 1 dedicated server and a colour printer and OCR scanner 3 of the computer screens should be suitable for visually impaired students any ideas where to start? (keep in mind there is a £18500 budget).

  hastelloy 06 Mar 12

"3 of the computer screens should be suitable for visually impaired students"

Depending on the degree of visual impairment, you may get away with large monitors or you may need screen magnification or screenreaders - for example zoomtext or JAWS. Neither are cheap but if your learners are going to need them to cope in a work situation in the future, you'd be doing them no favours if you didn't go that route. For further advice and help got to Abilitynet

  hastelloy 09 Mar 12

I'm sorry you haven't had a better response to your question. I would talk to Abilitynet - they are very knowledgeable and helpful. I realise the software I pointed out would take up almost half of your budget but you may be able to get help with financing specialist software and hardware (high visibility keyboards to mention but one). There used to be an organisation called "Electronic Aids for the Blind" who found funding but, sadly, they no longer exist. However, all they used to do was put a case to local organisations - Lions, Rotary etc. Also some companies will help with things like this - even Banks (Lloyds, I think, are particularly good) and supermarkets. If you have a large computer company near to you, they may be willing to help.

You might find this useful - Grants- but look carefully at their criteria and make a case accordingly if it's possible. There are thousands of charitable trust out there, it's just a case of making lots of applications and keeping your fingers crossed. A big problem is that it isn't easy to tell when they make their decisions so it's easy to miss out for a year.

I once sent out about 100 applications for £3000. I got a lot of sorry you've just missed our decision date, £250 from 1 trust and £15000 from another - that isn't a typo, it was £15000!

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