April 2017 Newsletter for Secondary Schools and Sixth Form Colleges

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Welcome to our April 2017 Newsletter for Secondary Schools and Sixth Form Colleges

JCS Customer survey

This month, we're leading with the results of our recent customer survey. This was an important activity for JCS, the first survey we've undertaken, and we appreciate all the responses we received.

We conducted the survey to find out how best to improve services for schools and colleges and to understand more about what's important to our customers when it comes to online resources and the support JCS provides.

We collected responses between 28 February and 17 March and 130 customers responded.

We were thrilled that 99% of respondents find JCS's sales and support team either helpful or very helpful and 94% would recommend JCS to a colleague or friend!

"I am very happy with the services you provide. Have always found you efficient and helpful. Funding is an issue in our sector so knowing services provide value for money, have relevant content and save teaching staff time are key factors in initial purchase and continuing to subscribe!" Librarian, Sixth Form College

Many respondents would like JCS to target e-resources for science and MFL as this is where they see a gap in our catalogue, and 79% of customers want the option to download training and promotional materials from My JCS really useful feedback to help further improve the service JCS provides schools and colleges.

The infographic to the right provides a quick and easy way to read the full results and some of the encouraging feedback from our customers. Please click here to see a larger version.

Product news

Gale in Context - new pricing!

JCS has specially negotiated new pricing for Gale in Context products and they are now much more affordable for your school. In fact, you could be saving up to 34% with the new pricing!

Made up of Global Issues in Context, Science in Context, Opposing Viewpoints in Context and World History in Context, the In Context titles provide support for the teaching and learning of a wide range of subjects including science, geography, economics, politics and sociology at secondary level. The titles can be ordered separately or all together for additional savings.

Excellent support for the EPQ and IB extended essay

The huge range of topic areas selected for the EPQ and IB extended essay will be making it impossible for librarians to provide their students with the necessary physical resources for their research – and will be completely unaffordable.

The In Context titles are a cost-effective way for students to access reliable and trustworthy information on a large number of topics online at any time and from anywhere. Perfect for EPQ research over the summer holidays.

Take a free trial and request a price quote for these resources in your My JCS account or contact us.

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World Book Online

New lower pricing and simpler package options now available!

Following discussions with World Book, we've managed to negotiate far simpler package options for schools and at even more affordable rates.

There are three new package options: World Book Standard, World Book Premium, and a brand new package, World Book Standard plus eBooks. These are all based on a simple price per learner model.

If you already subscribe to World Book Online, you will be able to keep the packages you have previously chosen but if you would like to find out more about the new options please feel free to contact us


World Book Standard
Age-appropriate reference titles to support student's research skills from primary up to sixth form level. Made up of the following titles World Book Kids, World Book Student, World Book Advanced plus the free bonus Timelines, where students can explore over 500 timelines covering a wide range of subjects and also create their own.

World Book Premium
World Book Standard titles plus L'Encyclopédie Découverte and Enciclopedia Estudiantil Hallazgos for French and Spanish students. It is particularly suitable for students learning French and Spanish as well as native speakers at primary level.

World Book Standard plus eBooks
World book Standard titles plus World Book eBooks, a collection of over 1,800 titles with unlimited simultaneous access. Most ebooks contain multimedia features such as videos, audio, games and activities which have been designed to make learning fun.

Find out more about the World Book Online packages here or take a free trial here.

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Audiopi - free access to all podcasts until 2 May

Discover highly engaging curriculum-mapped content covering History, English Literature, English Language, Physics, and Biology.

Podcast highlights include:

  • The renowned Shakespearean actor, Guy Henry, voicing Macbeth.
  • West End star, Chris Ashby, playing Christopher in The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time.
  • History modules with original recordings and sound bites to inspire students.
  • Physics iGCSE course written by Jonathan Kingsley – physics teacher at England’s oldest school, The King’s School, Canterbury.

Log in for free using these credentials until 2 May:
Username: jcsone@audiopi.co.uk
Password: Audiopi1week
URL: https://www.audiopi.co.uk/

So far this week the podcasts have been accessed over 500 times!

Please don't forget to share these details with other members of staff so they too can explore Audiopi. Find out more about Audiopi here.

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Churchill Archive/ Churchill Archive for Schools 

New (and free) resources for history teachers

Did nuclear weapons help to make the world safer between 1945 and 1951? This is the latest investigation to be made available free of charge in the Churchill Archive for Schools.

A total of 15 investigations, covering a wide range of subjects, is now available – from "What was the significance of Pearl Harbor”?" to "What went wrong at Gallipoli in 1915?"

Each investigation includes background information, primary sources and downloadable activities.

In addition to over 800K primary source documents, the Churchill Archive offers an expanding range of specially-commissioned educational resources, including a new article entitled “The Century of the 'Special Relationship': Britain and America in the Age of Churchill”.

Teachers and librarians can register for free access to the complete Churchill Archive here.

JCS blog 

Understanding the context of a novel using historical newspapers

There is so much that students can learn from historical newspapers. From how novels were received at the time, eyewitness accounts and news stories of political, economic, and social issues of the time. It is these stories that are so crucial to a student’s success at A-Level.

Part of the Assessment objectives for A-level and AS level English Literature qualifications is the ability to understand the context and its significance when studying a novel.

AQA and Edexcel define the aim as ‘demonstrate understanding of the significance and influence of the contexts in which literary texts are written and received’ and OCR states that students must be able to ‘develop understanding of relationships between texts and of the significance of cultural and contextual influences on readers and writers.’

Newspaper archives are a vital tool for students taking on the challenge of exploring a novel’s context. Find out why here.

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JCS news

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Welcome to two new members of the JCS team

Jessica O'Shea, our new Sales and Marketing Assistant

Jess joined the JCS Team in March: "I’m thrilled to be the new Sales and Marketing Assistant at JCS Online Resources and join such a lovely, dynamic team.

I started my career in the Sales and Marketing sector at the age of 19 working as a Digital Marketing Apprentice at a busy E-commerce business based in Oxford. After getting my NVQ in Digital Marketing, I worked for a small publishing business which specialised in bilingual children’s books.

In my spare time, I like to keep active by going to the gym and skating, and also attending music events. I love reading and am also passionate about photography, videography and graphic design.

My goals for 2017 are to learn as much as possible about schools and libraries and their e-resources needs, and to finally learn how to ride a bike!”

Sara Sheikh, our new Junior Account Executive

Sara joined the JCS team in April as a Junior Account Executive.

"I am really excited to have joined the JCS team and I have really enjoyed my first couple of weeks. Prior to joining JCS I worked as a Business Support Officer at a housing association after graduating with a degree in Business Management.

Whilst growing up I lived abroad and studied at five different schools where I came to understand the value of education. I have always enjoyed learning new things, from languages to cooking different kinds of food.

In my spare time, I like watching David Attenborough documentaries, getting involved with charity events and running TeenWise, a community youth club for young girls."

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Congratulations to Hugh and Carola

Huge congratulations to Hugh Webster who has been promoted to Senior Account Manager for Schools.

He says: "I am excited to be given the opportunity to lead the schools team, in what is a very exciting time in the UK, as well as internationally."

Hugh has also recently undertaken and passed a NCFE Level 2 Certificate in Team Leadership.

Congratulations are also in order for Carola Lopez, our Sales Support and Events Administrator, who has passed an NFCE Level 2 Certificate in the Principles of Customer Service. Well done to both of them!


JCS is delighted to be running two workshops at the 2017 joint YLG and SLA weekend course - Lightbulb Moments: Powered by Librarians. The course will be held over 23-25 June 2017 at the Majestic Hotel in Harrogate, Yorkshire.

'Managing Change' looks at how the school librarian responds and adapts to the needs of students in a world dominated and driven by technology and the Internet. This seminar will be led by Terri McCargar (Librarian, Latymer Upper School) and Elizabeth Hutchinson (Head of Service, Guernsey School Library Service), both well practised in managing change within schools.

'E-resources: are you maximising your investment?' will discuss the variety of ways a library can promote their e-resources in as cost-effective way as possible for maximum impact drawing on Joyce Martin's experience in promoting e-resources as well as ideas from the workshop delegates.

If you are attending the Weekend Course, we very much hope you'll come to one or both of our workshops.

Find out more here.

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Any Questions?

If you have any questions, comments or queries please do get in touch. We love to hear feedback about our newsletter and if you would also like to contribute, please email or tweet us @JCSResources.