Synchroweb Technology

Case Study: Wi-Fi Solution for Central Coast Grammar School

K-12 School Leverages Technology to Pave the Path to Interactive Learning

Introduction

Located in New South Wales, Australia, Central Coast Grammar School (CCGS) is an independent K-12 school that introduced a 1:1 laptop program in 1995. As a pioneer in the use of technology in education, CCGS continues to empower its students by continually upgrading their interactive learning tools and technology. Currently, almost 1300 students and 150 staff members make up the school’s user population. For the 1:1 program, grades 2-3 use iPads, grades 4-9 use school-issued Windows laptops, and grades 10-12 follow a BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) policy.

TECHNOLOGICAL CHALLENGE
The school’s IT infrastructure had previously been a mix of wired and wireless networking devices on different platforms. Issues inherent with such mixed systems caused CCGS to seek a single-vendor networking solution that would meet high performance and reliability expectations for all users.

CUTTING-EDGE NETWORK SOLUTION
To select the products best suited for the school’s applications, CCGS thoroughly tested different wired and wireless networking equipment together with a variety of WVP (Wireless Video Projection) products. The ultimate solution is comprised of Ubiquiti® products, provided by the Somerville Group via the distributor Leader, which has been serving Australia for over 20 years. CCGS deploys the following Ubiquiti products:

ModelNumberPurpose
UAP-AC-EDU130802.11ac wireless coverage with integrated PA system
UAP-AC-HD15802.11ac Wave 2 wireless coverage
UAP-AC-PRO10802.11ac wireless coverage
UAP-Outdoor-515Outdoor wireless coverage
ES-48-500W50Gigabit switching with 10G SFP+ ports and PoE support
ES-16-XG1010G aggregation switching with SFP+ and RJ45 ports
ER-8-XG110G routing with SFP+ ports

 

HIGH-PERFORMANCE 802.11ac WIRELESS COVERAGE
CCGS uses a variety of Ubiquiti APs to deliver 802.11ac Wi-Fi to the students and staff:

  • (130) UAP AC EDU AP: Most of the school is equipped with the EDU model, which offers 802.11ac Wi-Fi combined with public address capabilities. A mobile announcement app called the UAP EDU app allows for the broadcast of announcements from an iOS or Android-based device.
  • (15) UAP AC HD AP: The HD model offers 802.11ac Wave 2 MU-MIMO technology with 4×4 spatial streams to maximize multi-user throughput for high-density environments.
  • (10) UAP AC Pro AP: The Pro model offers 802.11ac Wi-Fi.


WIRELESS NETWORK MANAGEMENT AND MONITORING
UAP products are bundled with the scalable UAP Controller software, which manages UAP devices through a web browser or the UAP mobile app. It conducts device discovery, provisioning, and configuration of UAP devices via an intuitive user interface.

The Map screen shows the physical locations of all managed devices. As a convenient visual guide, CCGS uploaded a site map and placed each AP in its location on the map. Any AP can be selected to quickly access its status information and configuration settings. The Map screen also offers a 5 GHz Coverage option to display the approximate 5 GHz coverage area of each AP. The school uses the UAP Controller software to monitor the wireless network and traffic activity, including the individual Ubiquiti APs and wireless client devices.

POWERFUL ROUTING AND ENHANCED CAPACITY
The wired network is comprised of EdgeMAX products: § (1) 8-Port EdgeRouter™ Infinity: With 80 Gbps aggregate throughput, the 10G router features SFP+ ports for fiber connectivity and hot-swappable modular power supplies for redundant power. § (10) 16-Port EdgeSwitch® XG: Each 10G fiber switch offers 12 SFP+ ports and four RJ45 ports that support 10GBASE-T. It delivers maximum performance and low latency as an aggregation switch. § (50) 48-Port PoE EdgeSwitches: Each provides data and PoE to the Ubiquiti APs and offers dual SFP+ ports. The 48 Gigabit Ethernet ports conveniently feature auto-sensing IEEE 802.3af/at and configurable 24V Passive PoE.

With the update to the EdgeRouter Infinity and EdgeSwitches – XG and 48-Port PoE models – which include SFP+ ports for 10G fiber connectivity, all of the network connections between school buildings grew to 10 Gbps throughput for a tremendous increase in switch backplane bandwidth. Such an improvement enhanced the capacity of both the wired and wireless networks, thereby also facilitating interactive learning as CCGS pushes the boundaries of technology in education.