Heron Primary School, Gloucester

The Challenge

John Coles, the Head Teacher at Heron Primary School has a clear vision for developing his Gloucestershire school and taking teaching and learning to the next level. He knew that to gain the maximum benefit of the full range of hardware in the school, the staff and pupils needed reliable wireless access. The current network had insufficient coverage and slowed down significantly when multiple devices were used. As well as full coverage within the school such as classrooms and main hall, the school wanted coverage across their playground and playing fields to further benefit from the use of mobile devices in lessons and learning. The system needed to be reliable and expandable with growth expected for the school in future years. Working with a local company who could respond quickly was also an important factor for the Head Teacher and staff.

The Solution

The GBE Converge team designed and developed a new wireless network that included the roll-out of 20 internal wireless access points and 1 external access point with the aim of providing significantly better coverage than the existing system. Internal points provided coverage to the outdoors seating area and recreational grounds.

The Aruba Instant Wireless Access points were chosen for this project due to their superior signal coverage and their ability to handle many devices at once. As part of the project a new Power over Ethernet switch was installed to power the wireless access points over the network, rather than having to arrange for electrical points to be installed for each wireless access point.

The dedicated external wireless access point installed was one of the first to be done be GBE Converge in an educational setting. Providing coverage for virtually the whole playing field will allow teachers to use mobile devices such as tablets when teaching outside, for example during PE.

The new network ensures that pupils and staff should now be able to get a wireless signal in all parts of the school. Coverage is good and teachers can now have multiple pupils using wireless devices without any loss of operating speed. This will encourage the use of mobile technology such as tablets in the classroom and allow the school to take the teaching to another dimension.

Head Teacher, John Coles, commented on how he saw GBE Converge’s approach to the project, “The installation was completed on time to a very high standard During the site survey they listened carefully to our requirements and developed a plan that would provide us with a reliable and expandable solution. GBE Converge also contacted us regularly to ensure that everything was working to our complete satisfaction, supplying our IT technician with technical information and guidance as required. Any initial minor issues have been dealt with and fully resolved promptly”.