Kentucky Teams With Nortel To Enrich K-12 Learning Experience
Education Solution Includes Applications, Managed Services, Security Services
FRANKFORT, Ky. - The first state to bring broadband Internet access into every public school is further enriching the K-12 learning experience with intelligent classrooms and online tools for collaboration and assessment based on an education network solution from Nortel* [NYSE/TSX: NT].
The State of Kentucky is implementing a complete Nortel Education Solution - including infrastructure, applications, managed services and security services - under its 2007-2012 Education Technology Master Plan**.
This solution, delivered through Nortel channel partner Pomeroy IT Solutions**, provides web-based access to educational resources from both schools and homes. It is designed to help achieve the plan’s goal of providing equal opportunities for roughly 650,000 K-12 students in 174 school districts to become productive and contributing citizens.
“Nortel has a very clear understanding of the K-12 environment,” said David Couch, associate commissioner, Office of Education Technology, Kentucky Department of Education**. “Typically a vendor will come in thinking K-12 is like a corporate environment and that a corporate solution will work in this environment. But it’s radically different because of the concept of local control and autonomy.”
“You essentially have 174 corporations that you’re trying to move in the same direction, with similar objectives but with each having their own ideas on how to get there,” Couch said. “Nortel has people on the ground who understand that, and they’ve helped us select from their suite of products the best set for this environment.”
Kentucky is another example of how Nortel is transforming the educational environment with innovations in unified communications, advanced security and wireless mobility designed to enhance collaboration and enrich the learning experience.
“The fact that we were invited to help plan, deploy and manage a secure solution to address its objectives speaks volumes about the confidence the Kentucky Department of Education has shown in our understanding of the environment and our ability to deliver proven technology,” said Rod Wallace, general manager, Security Solutions, Nortel.
Kentucky’s master plan takes a long-term enterprise approach that addresses not just education technology, but also security, disaster recovery, authentication and identity management. It calls for an upgrade to the next generation of high-speed data networking, enabling statewide access to web-based instructional resources from both schools and homes. It also includes intelligent classrooms with online tools to help students collaborate and teachers electronically measure and assess progress.
“The plan is a bold stroke that enhances Kentucky’s reputation as a leader in the use of technology to improve education,” Wallace said. “The end result will be a dynamic, hyperconnected environment that reaches beyond classroom walls to provide a rich learning experience tailored to the unique needs of students, parents, faculty and staff.”
Nortel’s solution provides for Ethernet routing switches, switched firewalls and application switches for content filtering and secure network access switches throughout the Kentucky Education Network** to simplify and secure access to collaborative e-learning tools, technology-enabled individual learning plans and multimedia content.
Integral to achieving this is a set of Network Managed Services from Nortel’s Global Services portfolio provided by resident engineers and other Nortel staff to promote ongoing network health, performance and security. These services include network management, support and maintenance as well as security consulting and deployment and managed security.
Nortel’s successful track record with other technology projects for the state was instrumental in its selection by the Kentucky Department of Education. Other recent Nortel projects in Kentucky include a wireless mesh solution for Wi-Fi, VoIP and E911 services at 22 state resort parks, and a WiMAX solution connecting historic Hoge House** in Frankfort to the state’s optical network.
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