The Project

Marjory Kinnon is an all-age (Reception – Year 11) SEND school in the London Borough of Hounslow.

In March 2018 the school opened a brand new, purpose built, £30 million school building which offers state-of-the-art facilities to pupils. The new building incorporates fully fitted subject rooms, separate libraries for primary and secondary pupils, dedicated sensory rooms, and a therapy suite. The school also has extensive outside space which includes designated teaching areas.

Simpli-Fi were initially engaged by the local authority to help with the design and delivery of the IT network for the new school building. The team worked with the council in the early stages to plan the IT infrastructure requirements, and were then employed by the main contractor to deliver the IT network as part of the new build project. This included the design of the core network and cabinet locations, fibre backbone network, data outlet locations throughout the school and wireless provisions.

Challenges

Being involved in the early planning stages gave us the advantage of designing the school’s technical infrastructure. As Marjory Kinnon is a SEND school, we needed to understand the adaptive technology that was going to be used in the classrooms so that we could plan the wireless network accordingly.

There is a strong focus around technology being a driving force in the teaching and learning at Marjory Kinnon, so the wireless network is essential to the success of this. Although the density of the wireless network is low, due to the nature of the school, the size and layout of the site meant more external coverage was required to allow for the focus on outdoor learning.

Marjory Kinnon School

The Solution

A cloud-based solution was proposed to avoid the need for an on premise wireless controller. Simpli-Fi recommended a Ruckus cloud-based solution with R320 zoneflex access points, providing internal coverage around the site, and T310 external access points to the external teaching areas of the school. These were all centrally managed through our hosted virtual smartzone controller, which provides operational savings and improved maintenance.

This solution is managed through the Simpli-Fi WiFi as a service, which includes unlimited onsite and offsite support, next day hardware swap out, firmware updates and the benefit of an annual payment plan.

We engaged Simpli-Fi 4 years ago when we were in the process of planning the infrastructure for our new state of the art school building. The Simpli-Fi team were invaluable in the planning stages, ensuring that our infrastructure was designed to support a system that was critical to the technology we use for our teaching and learning pathway. As a SEND school, we use an array of adaptive and assistive technology that is crucial for some of our students and enhances the learning experience for others. The Simpli-Fi managed WiFi service has also been a welcome addition to our tech service portfolio, ensuring our network is always optimised and secure.

Mark O’Brian

Chief Operating Officer

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