's is an 11-18 comprehensive school. ‘’s’ was the first purpose-built comprehensive school in . Since its opening in 1962, several new buildings have been added, providing state of the art facilities for its 700 pupils.
The school had been looking for a Wi-fi solution to provide wireless network access for pupils in class, as well as for staff, but were hesitant to invest in the technology as they and surrounding schools had been disappointed with wireless implementations which had proved not to be suitable for the school environment.
In May 2007, VSL hosted a seminar in examining the challenges of Wifi in Education, whereby the local schools community voiced their concerns and experiences.
It was this seminar that gave , ICT manager at ’ the confidence to proceed.
VSL introduced a product from Meru Networks which has a fundamentally different architecture to most wireless products and this architecture makes it particularly suitable for installation in education.
The Meru product is able to operate with adjacent access points on the same channel. This eliminates the need for channel planning. To do this it must control access to “the air”. This control also eliminates the contention inefficiencies suffered by most wireless networks, ensuring high performance even with large numbers of users.
“ was looking for complete wireless coverage across the site, capable of supporting 30 concurrent wireless devices in each classroom.
VSL produced a wireless coverage plan of the school which took into consideration the building construction and simulated the coverage, signal strength and connection speeds that would be available throughout the school.
The coverage plan indicated that suitable coverage & performance could be achieved with 25 access points. opted for the Meru 3025 Controller and 25 Meru AP200. The AP200 was chosen as it handles seamless roaming and automatic prioritization of voice traffic and therefore provides the option to use the Wifi for voice calls as well as data.
The reaction from the teaching staff has been very positive with no reported problems. Classes log-in within seconds and the Meru fair air time features ensure performance is consistently high