ANNEX 2.5.7.2 Total Cost of Ownership

An effective National School Connectivity Plan must take into account the total cost of ownership (“TCO”). Educational objectives, actors and funding must be channelled to address the key steps that complement each other. The TCO includes the cost of deploying the infrastructure platform -- which is more than just the simple cost of acquiring computers and connectivity for schools. It also includes the cost of replacing equipment – both hardware and software as well as peripherals. Additional costs include security, electricity, maintenance of content and applications, ongoing user training and support, equipment maintenance and technical support, and monitoring and evaluation of the project.

Major operating costs associated with National School Connectivity Plans will also include personnel costs and usage costs. These are often the “forgotten costs” when projects are designed, even though they are critical for a project to be sustainable. Usage costs, which may be unpredictable if not properly regulated, form an important part of the TCO calculation.

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