Sir Henry Floyd Grammar School future-proofs its network with a new WiFi 6 solution from Redway Networks.

Sir Henry Floyd Grammar School future-proofs its network with a new WiFi 6 solution from Redway Networks.

Sir Henry Floyd Grammar school improves wireless connectivity and future-proofs the capability of its network with a hyper-reliable, cloud managed wireless solution from Redway Networks. The school’s new ExtremeCloud IQ WiFi 6 will support digital teaching and learning by providing a secure, robust wireless network for over 1,300 pupils.

The school is a mixed secondary and part of the Insignis Academy Trust and being a Google school, all students have their own Chromebooks for learning and with other connecting devices and teachers’ laptops, more than 3,000 devices are connecting to the network. As the number of devices grew and the school deployed more technology and newer hardware, it became apparent that the school’s existing WiFi couldn’t cope.    

John Huskinson, Chief Operations Officer at Insignis Academy Trust says: “Our legacy Ruckus WiFi solution was not ideally located or configured, and we knew it wouldn’t cope well with the school’s increase in devices and digital learning.  Our trust is committed to having the latest technology that is fit for purpose so it was obvious we needed a new high-performance WiFi solution that would seamlessly connect all the school’s devices and could support the whole end-to-end IT experience.”

To support the school’s future network capacity it decided to go for a ‘big bang’ and upgrade its Ruckus system4 with a new robust WiFi 6 solution that would future-proof the school in terms of technology for the next ten years. John says: “We wanted a single system that could provide seamless network capacity and handle our traffic requirements both now and for the future.  We also required a cloud-managed system for complete network visibility.” 

The trust evaluated ExtremeCloud and Meraki and chose Redway Networks as the solution provider.  John says: “Redway Networks came out on top for both products in terms of cost and technical knowledge and really understood our requirements.” 

After selecting ExtremeCloud IQ with 63 access points (APs) Redway Networks had to configure the solution which would normally be done through an Ekahau site survey. However, as the school was closed due to Coronavirus, the survey had to be completed on paper using a theoretical heat mapping configuration which was then verified using Ekahau Sidekick to determine signal strength and AP positioning.  John says: “I was very impressed with the amount of time Redway spent with us on the mapping to make sure all our network requirements, so we got the solution right first time.” 

John says:  We now have high-performance WiFi that will support our technology needs for the next ten years.  We were also able to reuse most of the Ruckus system in our Princes Risborough school which had an even older WiFi infrastructure than Sir Henry Floyd, so in fact, both our schools have benefitted.  In five years’ time every student at the school will be tapping into videos and streaming in high definition and teachers will be using more video for teaching and I’m confident that any amount of traffic we throw at our new network won’t kill the WiFi”.