Rugby School in Warwickshire has chosen Xirrus to provide WiFi networks to connect boarding houses and support pupils' access to the internet.
The school was founded in 1567, and has a reputation for education and the creation of the eponymous sport. But, despite this venerable past, every classroom has an interactive whiteboard and WiFi access, and every pupil owns a laptop.
The age of the buildings, which were built in the Georgian and Victorian eras, presented a challenge for rolling out a WiFi network. The previous network was not able to handle all the devices needing access while having the strength to reach across the school.
Rugby School opted for Xirrus to provide a network for its boarding houses that supports the numerous devices needing WiFi access when pupils are not in the classroom.
Xirrus created a network with 2.4GHz and 5GHz frequency access, which allows the latest devices to tap into the speedier 5GHz band.
The company also provides cloud management and application controls to handle accessibility, bandwidth and security.
The Xirrus Application Control allows network administrators to prioritise and restrict applications during school and study hours to prevent students being distracted by social media sites and video streaming services, and to ensure that students browse the web safely and securely.
Andrew Waples, IT director at Rugby School, explained the importance of internet access for the school’s pupils and why it chose Xirrus as the WiFi provider.
“Internet access is crucial in supporting studies, so it is important that we make the right technology choices on behalf of our students,” he said.
“We pride ourselves on excellence in everything we do and that applies to our selection of providers. In this case, we went to great lengths to ensure whoever we selected would be the very best.
"Xirrus proved itself a clear leader in performance in our initial trials, and it was quickly obvious that the company stood head and shoulders above the competition.”
The Xirrus project includes a second phase to install a WiFi network throughout the school’s main buildings.
Several organisations are undertaking such projects to enable greater access to digital services and better use of data, such as the NHS’s selection of Splunk Enterprise to handle big data analytics on the NHS Choices website.
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