There's a very complex and interesting debate to be had about the role students take within state education in the UK. Are they partners, consumers, commissioning agents, subjects or employees? Probably the one thing most educationalists would agree is they are definitely not employees. Are their parents the customer? Are the local employers the customer as they will be consuming much of the finished product?
In terms of IT services, perhaps there might be a case for considering school students to be employees but I’m not convinced. They don’t, perhaps shouldn’t is a better way of putting it, negotiate with IT about the services they require. The school hierarchy does that in their interests. They are, after all, for most of their compulsory education, children, minors and therefore not fully capable of determining what is in their own best interests. I am completely convinced that their views must be listened to, don't think otherwise. But one of the things schools need to do whether they have a managed IT service or not, is to determine what IT services the school wants and what priority each should have.
This determination is close to the heart of the self review process and so it's very important. As I'm starting to work with three schools on the SRF journey these thoughts arose about what the involvement of students might need to be.