Networking & Wireless

Lamar County School District Upgrades to 802.11ac Wi-Fi

Lamar County School District (LCSD) in Mississippi has implemented 802.11ac wireless network infrastructure throughout its schools and auxiliary buildings to support its expanding 1-to-1 technology initiative, bring-your-own-device (BYOD) initiative and integration with Google Classroom.

LCSD serves 10,000 students and employs 1,300 faculty and staff members. As more students and teachers began bringing their smartphones, tablets and laptops onto campus, the district's 7-year-old legacy wireless network couldn't support the density of devices. The district has also begun implementing a 1-to-1 initiative, which currently includes more than 1,300 Chromebooks and 500 iPads for classroom use and places even greater demands on the wireless network infrastructure.

IT administrators at the district recognized the need to upgrade their Wi-Fi infrastructure to support the expanding number of devices. After reviewing solutions from numerous networking vendors, they selected an Aerohive controller-less system with Aerohive AP230 access points, which can provide "aggregate data rates up to 1,300 Mbps in 5-GHz band," according to information on the company's site.

The district also implemented Aerohive's Social Login and HiveManager Online tools. Social Login lets students use their Google account to authenticate themselves on the school network, so they don't have to login separately on each one, and HiveManager Online lets IT staff manage the network from a centralized location.

The district uses Google Classroom extensively in all of its schools, and according to information from Aerohive, the faster, denser Wi-Fi network provides students and teachers with more reliable access to this and other online educational resources. Faculty and staff are also using the network to access software for grades, attendance, teacher evaluations and student registration.

Lamar County School District is the fastest-growing district in the state, and IT administrators anticipate that the upgraded network infrastructure will be able to support the growing number of students and devices.

About the Author

Leila Meyer is a technology writer based in British Columbia. She can be reached at [email protected].