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DfE Connect the Classroom Scheme

Connect the Classroom

The Department for Education’s (DfE) Connect the Classroom Scheme has returned until 2025, helping to keep schools across the UK in Educational Investment Areas connected with a seamless and future proof wireless networking solution.

Specialising in IT services and strategy for the education sector, we understand the unique requirements and challenges schools face in regards to IT and Connectivity.

Working with 1000+ schools to improve their communications and connectivity since 2005, we are able to work with your school to provide a bespoke DfE approved solution tailored towards your requirements.

Let us help you provide an effective and comprehensive, education-focused wireless networking solution with the DFE Connect the Classroom scheme 

It’s time to Connect your Classrooms with Tel Group.

Improved Connectivity

Budget Friendly

Engaging Experiences

Connect the Classroom Enquiries:



Improve Classroom Engagement and Learning Outcomes with a DfE Funded Wireless Upgrade


DfE Connect the Classroom Scheme

Transform Your Connectivity with Tel Group

DfE Connect the Classroom Scheme - Tel Group DfE Connect the Classroom Scheme - Tel Group

What is Connect the Classroom?

Connect the Classroom is a scheme funded by the DfE to provide schools within Education Investment Areas across the UK with a seamless and future-proof wireless networking solution.

This initiative will transform your school’s current IT and network infrastructure, improving connectivity and coverage across your premises with Access Points and Fibre Cabling to meet the demands of your school.

Eligible schools on the 2022 funding program should of now been contacted by the DfE, and eligible schools for 2023 & 2024 funding will be contacted around December 2022. However, if you are unsure of your eligibility status then please get in touch and we can help.

DfE Connect the Classroom - Map of UK Eligible Schools DfE Connect the Classroom - Map of UK Eligible Schools

Who is eligible?

The DfE have grouped all eligible schools into 3 different categories, Priority Education Investment Areas, Education Investment Areas and Intervention Schools.

1) Priority Education Investment Areas – All schools in the following areas are eligible

Blackpool, Bradford, Derby, Doncaster, Fenlands and East Cambridgeshire, Halton, Hartlepool, Hastings, Ipswich, Knowsley, Liverpool, Middlesbrough, North Yorkshire Coast, Norwich, Nottingham, Oldham, Portsmouth, Rochdale, Salford, Sandwell, Stoke-on-Trent, Tameside, Walsall, West Somerset

2) Education Investment Areas – All schools in the following areas rated as ‘Requires Improvement’ or ‘Inadequate’ at last inspection.

Bedford, Blackpool, Bolton, Bradford, Bury, Cambridgeshire, Central Bedfordshire, Cornwall, County Durham, Coventry, Darlington, Derby, Derbyshire, Doncaster, Dorset, Dudley, East Sussex, Halton, Hartlepool, Isle of Wight, Kirklees, Knowsley, Leeds, Lincolnshire, Liverpool, Luton, Manchester, Middlesbrough, Norfolk, North Northamptonshire, North Somerset, North Yorkshire, Nottingham, Nottinghamshire, Oldham, Peterborough, Plymouth, Portsmouth, Rochdale, Rotherham, Salford, Sandwell, Sefton, Somerset, South Gloucestershire, South Tyneside, St. Helens, Stoke-on-Trent, Suffolk, Sunderland, Swindon, Tameside, Wakefield, Walsall, Wirral

3) Intervention Schools – All intervention schools are eligible, no matter of location.

DfE Connect the Classroom - Tel Group - Next Steps DfE Connect the Classroom - Tel Group - Next Steps

What are the next steps?

Once you’ve received your invitation you will need to complete a compliant bid to obtain the funding. Your school can then apply direct via Tel Group.

    1. Get in touch with our team to request a quote and discuss your requirements.
    2. We will provide a quote designed exclusively to DfE specifications which you can review and share with your DfE advisor.
    3. Once approved, our team will develop the plan for your projects delivery and installation.
    4. Along the way, you will receive proactive support, guidance and training, as well as after care once your project is complete.
    5. Enjoy your new connectivity!
    Connect the Classroom DfE - Why choose Tel Group? Connect the Classroom DfE - Why choose Tel Group?

    Why choose Tel Group?

    Specialising in IT services and strategy for the education sector, we understand the unique requirements and challenges schools face in regards to IT and Connectivity.

    • With experience working with 1000+ education customers since 2005, we are able to work with your school to provide a bespoke DfE approved solution tailored towards your requirements.
    • We have worked with the DfE for many years on a number of projects and continue to do so.

    • We understand your schools requirements and are able to offer a solution that works towards your allocated budgets, wants and needs.

    Unfortunately, not every school will qualify for this funding. If your school is in this position, we will still provide the DfE approved pricing, helping you achieve the same results. 

        Connect the classroom DFE Connect the classroom DFE

        The Process

        Once you’ve received your invitation you will need to complete a compliant bid to obtain the funding. Your school can then apply direct via Tel Group.

        • Engagement
          • Initial contact either directly by DfE, or responsible body
        • Assessment
          • Each school submits a network asset form and completes a survey – We can do this on behalf of the school
        • Procurement
          • Once accepted, the school selects their preferred supplier and submits the cost matrix to DfE for approval
          • DfE give the school a funding agreement to the value of the approved level of cost
        • Delivery
          • School/responsible body liaise with their supplier to schedule works
          • Cost changes submitted to DfE for update to funding agreement
        • Claim
          • School submits invoice for all or part of the works. Multiple payments are allowed
          • A claim must be submitted by March 2023, even if only for some of the work
          • DfE channels payment through the responsible body 

        Connect the Classroom Case Study

        How Tel Group Transformed Mill Ford School’s Connectivity through the CTC Scheme

        Connect the Classroom DfE Mill Ford Plymouth

        External Access Points enabling Wi-Fi CCTV Cameras

        Connecting Mill Ford through the DfEs Connect the Classroom Scheme
        Mill Ford School Wifi Heat Map - Connect the Classroom DfE Plymouth

        Heat map showing upgraded Wi-Fi coverage

        Keeping Plymouth School connected through DfE funding on Connect the Classroom 2021
        Mill Ford School Connecting Both Premises- connect the classroom plymouth

        Integrating distant sites with the same network coverage

        Ensuring both school sites are connected with complete network coverage
        Mill Ford Wi-Fi Cabling - Connect the Classroom Plymouth

        Before Connect the Classroom

        Schools previous cabling infrastructure
        Mill Ford WiFi Cabling - connect the classroom

        During Connect the Classroom

        Schools cabling infrastructure during Connect the Classroom
        Mill Ford WiFi Cabling - Connect the Classroom

        After Connect the Classroom

        Schools cabling infrastructure once Connect the Classroom project is complete

        Additional Services

        Working as a Strategic Education Technology Partner

        To find out how we can help you on the DfE Connect the Classroom scheme, get in touch!
        • LASBM - Lancashire SBM Network Forum Group
        • GASBM - Gloucester School Business Managers Group - Education IT Suppliers
        • BASBM - Birmingham Association of School Business Managers Sponsor - Education IT Supplier
        • MATA - Multi Academy Trust Association Sponsors - Education IT Suppliers
        • ANME - Association of Network Managers in Education Forum Sponsors - IT Education Suppliers
        • NAMAT - National Association of Multi Academy Trusts Sponsors - Education IT Suppliers
        • DASBM - Dudley Association of School Business Managers Sponsors - Education IT Suppliers
        • Manchester and Trafford School Business Leaders Forum sponsors - Education IT Suppliers
        • Sandwell SBM Network Forum Sponsors - Education IT Suppliers
        • sgsbl - south Gloucester school business leaders sponsors - education IT suppliers
        • WASBM - Worcester association of school business managers sponsors - Education IT Supplier
        • SYSBL - south Yorkshire school business leaders forum sponsors - Education IT Suppliers