School’s e-learning program gets a wireless boost

A Sydney-based private girls school, Loreto Normanhurst, has implemented wireless broadband to improve its e-learning program.

The BigAir service which was implemented by channel partner Netlan, will allow the school to effectively use its network to deliver education services to students including Internet access, online media streaming, student portals, and online student portfolios with access by parents.

Loreto Normanhurst, IT manager, Ken McMurturie said Internet bandwidth has become a critical factor in Loreto’s ability to provide quality levels of education to students.

“Many students log into the Loreto network at night time after dinner to complete homework tasks, so we required a service with a very high uplink capability. We are very excited at the capabilities that the BigAir network will provide the school in its ability for us to provide high quality online education,” he said.

“Students become more engaged in their homework when they’re not waiting a long time for downloads.” The school had previously been limited by ADSL limitations caused by distance to its local exchange at Wahroonga.

“Loreto had a 2Mb/2Mb service installed, but because of its distance from the exchange they were only achieving 512/512kbps,” according to Gunter Baurhenn, managing director of Netlan.

“Loreto now has a 4Mb/4Mb service installed from with the ability to achieve broadband speeds of up to 100 Mbps on the BigAir network, and the service can even be scaled up and down depending on bandwidth requirements of the school.

“For example around exam time the school can increase bandwidth available to students to do online research or study.” Plans are already underway to upgrade the service to 6Mbps.

BigAir CEO, Jason Ashton, said there are many areas along Sydney’s north shore that are “broadband deprived”.

“Basicallly, they cannot achieve SHDSL speeds above 2Mbps. Our wireless network is assisting to ‘enable’ primary and secondary schools achieve optimum Internet performance through the provision of high speed broadband links,” he said. ASX-listed BigAir Group (BGL) is a wireless broadband service provider that owns and operates its own fixed wireless network covering Sydney.

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