Upper Darby started from scratch and worked with ALE to build a solid technology infrastructure that would help achieve the district’s curriculum goals.

  • Country: United States Of America
  • Industry: Education
  • Solution: Data Center, Autonomous Network

Upper Darby School District was operating a disparate network. They began working toward a 1:1 device learning initiative but connectivity to the Internet was unreliable. Taking a step back, they identified the need for a comprehensive plan to create an enterprise-grade network, one that would support an advanced wireless environment. With grant money they were able to invest in an infrastructure from ALE that added better connectivity, greater safety, advanced application use for digital learning, and accomplished the goals of the district to provide an advanced, reliable network.

Upper Darby School District Case Study customer logo
Upper Darby School District Case Study customer image
Technology was a focal point in our comprehensive plan. The AlcatelLucent Enterprise solutions were the most cost-effective design for our needs. We turned on the network, and it worked the first time – that was a big thing! Today, it handles additional capacity and it still works.

Bob Hilinski, Director of Technology, Upper Darby School District


Upper Darby dealt with budget issues for a few years and to cope, created a homegrown network which created management inconsistency with the different network vendors’ equipment. Users had different network experiences depending on what building they were in because Upper Darby lacked an overall enterprise-level solution. Teachers across the district found the network unreliable and found connecting to the internet was either slow or non-existent, which hampered the move to an online curriculum. With over 13,000 users (including students, staff and teachers), it was not the experience district wanted to provide for students.

Products & Solutions

Technical Benefits

  • Each classroom has 4 network drops for teachers and devices; there’s a dedicated wireless access point to allow unfettered network access
  • Network star configuration provided increased bandwidth and streamlined network management
  • IT Staff is able to remotely reset APs or update network configuration across 14 campuses
  • Moved curriculum and business applications to the cloud: student information systems, LMS, financial systems, learning and testing
  • Created individualized Wi-Fi networks with SSIDs to control and manage use of network
  • Security cameras, interactive projectors, smartboards and printers securely connected to independent VLANs

Financial Benefits

  • ALE solutions qualified for eRate funds allowed a greater network build-out
  • OmniSwitch products delivered a cost-effective solution with low TCO
  • Money previously assigned for annual infrastructure updates was reallocated for software curriculum
  • IT Staff spends less time managing network issues and can redirect support costs to servicing students and staff

User Experience Benefits

  • Administration staff now attends meetings and webinars without connectivity issues
  • Teachers have a network for solid, reliable lesson planning, removing learning disruptions
  • IT staff supports Curriculum department to launch broader range of learning applications
  • Staff, students and guests have differentiated access rights to do activities while keeping the network secure.
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