George Mitchell School


ICT infrastructure project prepares Waltham Forest school for autumn term

George Mitchell School provides teaching and learning for almost 1,000 pupils from nursery stage to year 11.

The school, consisting of five separate sites within a short walk of each other, believes in enhancing the employability of pupils to equip them for adult life.

The school’s objectives

Each school site connects to a central server via wireless technology. Having evolved over time and grown considerably in the existing buildings, the school’s network was sluggish and unwieldly. This caused a poor staff and student ICT user experience. Throughout the school day slow connection speeds delayed logins and disrupted classroom desktop working, which impacted on teaching and learning.

“After I had raised concerns about our ICT infrastructure, and in particular, our disaster recovery, the SBS ICT audit addressed the major issue of our backup strategy.” says John Lawrence, School Business Manager at George Mitchell School.

How SBS services helped

After a thorough SBS ICT Audit, which was conducted across all sites and reviewed all school technology systems, an extensive report was presented to George Mitchell School. An assessment of the school’s network identified that the cause of the delays was the obsolete equipment installed at its server core.

Furthermore, the audit revealed that due to inadequate backup levels staff and student documents were at risk of being irretrievably lost, including important MIS data and precious coursework.

To prepare for the new ICT infrastructure each PC was fully repaired and reformatted to deliver optimum performance. The server was then replaced entirely with high specification equipment and a robust backup solution was installed to protect school data.

“The ICT strategy audit was exemplary with detailed briefing notes at all stages.” reflects John, “SBS made the most of the summer break to complete the project in time for the autumn term.”

    "SBS made the most of the summer break to complete the project in time for the autumn term. Furthermore, George Mitchell School staff were involved in the process which is important for the Continuing Professional Development (CPD) of the team.”
    John Lawrence School Business Manager

    The impact

    Had the summer project not been implemented it is questionable if the school would have opened for the autumn term.

    Without needing to upgrade hardware, the summer project created shorter login times and faster, more stable PCs for staff and students. This speeds up back-office processes and improves classroom teaching and learning at the school.

    “After the project we are so much more confident that we can survive an unexpected failure,” says John. “The original second hand SAN died three weeks into the upgrade! Such timely work!”