IMT Provides WiFi for Washington’s Renton School District
Renton School District in Washington state’s King County selected Integrated Media Technologies, Inc. (IMT) to implement Meraki’s MR24 cloud-controlled wireless access points to provide enterprise-class WiFi to all of Renton’s 16,000 students, faculty, and staff. Now equipped with the nation’s first campus-wide 3-stream 802.11n network, Renton School District has it installed at 29 sites, including elementary, middle, and high schools in and around the city of Renton.
“We want to put new technology in the hands of the students,” explained Stosh Morency, Renton’s IT Director. “It’s a ‘bring your own device concept’ and by having the wireless network across all of our buildings, it opens the door for projects that were never an option before. For us as a school district, we want to provide access to all of the students, regardless of where they are in the buildings.”
“This was one of our biggest projects,” remarked Garth Gilmour, IMT’s VP Professional Services. “The deployment makes Renton the first school district to adopt the latest generation of WiFi, featuring 3-stream, 900 Mbps performance.” The award-winning Meraki Enterprise Cloud Controller centrally manages a total of 437 of Meraki’s high performance MR24 access points.
“New technology projects always have challenges,” added Morency, “but IMT and Meraki made it much easier to deal with. The Meraki tools made it easier to troubleshoot problems and the IMT team was totally committed to the success of the project.”
“Through IMT’s thorough research and exacting implementation, Meraki allows me to manage the network across the entire district, and I’m a team of one,” said Todd Baker, network administrator for Renton School District. “The capabilities of Meraki’s Cloud Controller are considerable. There’s one dashboard for everything, from provisioning APs to troubleshooting client issues.”
The Meraki MR24, an ultra high-performing 3-stream 802.11n access point, is ideal for dense classroom environments and high-bandwidth applications. Renton is deploying 437 access points, providing campus-wide coverage for its Computer on Wheels (COW) program, which provides classrooms with “COW carts” to stream video, data and other media.
With IMT’s help, Renton leveraged Meraki’s contract with the Washington Learning Source (WLS), which facilitates deployments for Washington state school districts. Prior to selecting Meraki, Stosh Morency and Todd Baker carefully evaluated a number of networking vendors, testing WiFi range, throughput, signal strength, and interference.
The ease of use and reliability of Meraki’s cloud controller impressed Baker. “I’ve had a controller go bad on me in the past. With Meraki’s cloud controller, I’ll never have to deal with that again,” Baker said. IT Director Stosh Morency added, “And the lifetime warranty of the products was a key factor in our decision making process.”