School District Implements Xirrus to Manage the Addition of 1,700 Chromebooks and Ensure Critical Educational Applications are Prioritized
THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. – October 28, 2014 – MSA Systems, Inc., a leader in wireless infrastructure and deployment, today announced that Mountain View Los Altos Union High School District has deployed a Xirrus wireless network to enable always-on wireless access in support of advanced digital learning initiatives at its Los Altos High School (LAHS) campus. With a Xirrus wireless network, LAHS seamlessly met the demands of their digital campus, handling a 560 percent increase in Wi-Fi usage to support more than 1,800 students.
Known for its academic rigor and access to cutting-edge technology, LAHS faced a considerable challenge to support significant growth in wireless device usage. LAHS’ existing network offered inconsistent access depending on the location of the user, and could not meet the explosive growth of their digital campus.
“We found that if too many devices connected to an access point, at some point everyone would simultaneously lose connectivity,” said Mike Mathiesen, Associate Superintendent at Mountain View High School. “It was adequate when it was first put in four years ago, but as the number of devices connecting grew, it became apparent that a new solution would be necessary.”
In Fall 2013, the school district began to assess its wireless network options in light of the institution of new Common Core assessments, computer-based standardized testing and individualized teaching that requires online access and wireless connectivity. Administrators needed significantly more laptops for students to implement the testing, as well as updated wireless infrastructure. This project took shape swiftly as the Mountain View Los Altos High School Foundation and Google stepped forward with grants to supply the school district with the devices they needed.
“We went from 300 Chromebooks district-wide at the end of the last school year to more than 2,000 today,” said Mathiesen. “We sought a wireless provider that could support our new requirements for density and capacity, as well as the ability to scale to match our future growth plans.”
LAHS deployed 4-radio and 8-radio modular Xirrus Access Points (APs) across the campus. By utilizing high density modular APs, 72 percent less equipment was required compared to standard 2-radio fixed APs, significantly reducing installation and ongoing operational costs. Knowing that the number of connected devices will increase over time, LAHS evaluated wireless networks with the requirement to support a 3:1 device to student ratio. Xirrus’ high-performance capability more than made the grade during a test of the Wi-Fi network at freshman orientation in August 2014. Over 750 devices successfully connected to view a video with no reported issues.
“LAHS expanded their wireless coverage significantly, extending connectivity across all classrooms as well as common and outdoor areas,” said Jose Perez, director of IT infrastructure services at MSA Systems. “By deploying Xirrus, LAHS ensured that their investment in wireless would be adaptable to changing wireless requirements, significantly lengthening the overall lifespan of their network.”
Administrators also utilize Xirrus’ ability to manage application usage to ensure wireless devices are being used strictly for educational purposes during school hours. Xirrus’ Application Control puts tools in the hands of administrators to monitor usage, prioritize critical educational applications, and block recreational applications such as social media and gaming.
“As digital learning and computer-based testing become the norm in high schools, administrators are faced with balancing cost with the longevity and performance of the wireless networks they deploy,” said Bruce Miller, vice president of product marketing at Xirrus. “Xirrus’ upgradable hardware and software-defined solutions enable schools to meet today’s requirement and tomorrow’s demands while reducing cost over the life of the wireless infrastructure.”
About MSA Systems, Inc.
MSA Systems, Inc. was founded in 1996 and is headquartered in San Jose, CA with offices in Portland OR, Phoenix, and Sierra Vista, AZ. We provide turn-key field mobility solutions, warehouse management solutions, barcoding and RFID software and hardware as well as the related wireless infrastructure services. For more information please visit: www.msasys.com.
About Xirrus, Inc.
Xirrus is the leading provider of high-performance wireless networks. Xirrus solutions perform under the most demanding circumstances, offering consistent “wired-like” performance with superior coverage and security. The Xirrus suite of Wi-Fi optimized solutions — Arrays, access points, cloud services, and wired switches — provide seamless connectivity and unified management across the network. Xirrus provides a vital strategic business and IT infrastructure advantage to industries that depend on wireless to operate business-critical applications. With tens of thousands of customer solutions deployed globally, Xirrus maintains operations and partnerships across the globe. Xirrus is a privately held company and is headquartered in Thousand Oaks, CA. For more information please visit: www.xirrus.com and follow us on Twitter: @Xirrus.
Xirrus and XR Series are trademarks or registered trademarks of Xirrus. Other trade names used in this document are or may be the property of their respective owners.