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Networking & Wireless | News

Tennessee School Deploys Wireless Network To Support Mobile Devices

A Tennessee K-5 school has deployed a wireless network to support its increasing use of mobile technology in the classroom.

Brainerd Baptist School in Chattanooga, TN, decided to implement the scalable Aerohive wireless WLAN in April.

The school, which has students and teachers using iPads, iPods, smartphones, and laptops, was using an old wireless network that was hard to manage and unreliable. The school had several requirements when considering a new wireless network. It had to include central administration, simple and central management, and be secure, and affordable. In addition, the network would be used in the Brainerd Baptist Church.

"From an IT innovation standpoint, wireless is a must," said Bradley Chambers, director of information technology. "It's the future of computing. We are near the tipping point to where if you were building a new building, you might not even do wired Ethernet."

Aerohive 802.11n wireless LANs feature:

  • A cloud-based controller-less environment;
  • Data reports on bandwidth usage;
  • TeacherView Classroom Monitoring Application, which lets teachers manage Wi-Fi access in their classrooms;
  • Centralized management for a school or school district;
  • Integrated Captive Web Portal, which provides secure Wi-Fi access for guests using the network; and
  • Security tools, such as integrated firewall, WIPS, VPN, RADIUS, and support for Active Directory.

During the school week, 250 to 300 people use the wireless network, and 500 to 600 use it on Sundays at church, where many congregation members use iPads instead of Bibles.

Chambers said he plans to deploy additional access points as the school uses more wireless devices.

Brainerd Baptist School has 305 students enrolled in pre-kindergarten through fifth grade. It provides teachers with iPads, iPods, MacBooks, Promethean digital whiteboards, and Elmo document cameras to use in classrooms. It uses Google Apps for e-mail, RenWeb for school management, ACS for financial and church management, Libsyn for media hosting, and MediaTemple for Web site hosting. It also uses a Sonicwall NSA 3500 firewall and HP ProCurve switches.

For more information about Brainerd, visit brainerdbaptistschool.org. Go to aerohive.com to learn more about Aerohive.

About the Author

Tim Sohn is a 10-year veteran of the news business, having served in capacities from reporter to editor-in-chief of a variety of publications including Web sites, daily and weekly newspapers, consumer and trade magazines, and wire services. He can be reached at timothyjsohn@gmail.com and followed on Twitter @editortim.

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