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No School Left Behind: Leveraging the Power of Fiber Optic Networks for Education

This post was originally published on August 29, 2019, and was updated on January 17, 2024

The use of technology in educational settings is on the rise. In 2019, EdTech Magazine completed a global survey, which found that nearly half of students use a computer in the classroom, 42% use smartphones, 33% leverage interactive whiteboards, and 20% work on tablets. The COVID-19 pandemic accelerated the adoption of many technologies in the classroom. High-bandwidth, high-capacity networks for education are critical to bringing educational programming, testing, and collaboration into the digital age.

Here are just some of the key trends driving demand for fiber optic networks for school districts, universities, and other learning institutions:

  • eLearning Applications
  • Learning Analytics
  • Online Testing
  • Cloud Computing
  • Real-Time Collaboration
  • Live Video Instruction
  • HD Content Streaming
  • Virtual/Augmented Reality
  • Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning

Infrastructure Needs

To ensure that your IT infrastructure supports your students, faculty, and administration, it is critical to keep the following needs in mind: 

Cybersecurity Needs 

The need for robust cybersecurity has also increased as assignments and grade books migrate to the cloud. However, with tightening budgets, most school districts do not have a dedicated IT team to focus on the risks of attacks. By partnering with a cloud solutions provider, school districts can rely on their cloud vendor’s cybersecurity expertise for their day-to-day security. Although a strong partner provides peace of mind, it is essential to continue to run risk assessments.

Network Needs

Security extends beyond data storage to the network itself. The daily use by students, faculty, and administrators requires a reliable and fast network with sufficient bandwidth. Besides connectivity, the network must also serve as a protective barrier against potential threats, ensuring a safe digital environment for everyone.

All these are data intensive and require fast, robust, reliable networks. Unfortunately, many educational institutions still rely on legacy network solutions like copper-coax cable and even wireless architectures. Fiber-based networks are a cut above these alternate solutions, offering users higher bandwidth, faster internet speeds, high security, lower latency, and even better signal strength.

Think about it. With teachers and students increasingly interested in cloud collaboration, online discussion forums, virtual/augmented reality, video streaming, and other applications, educational institutions need the advantages of fiber optic internet.

Here at DQE, we have plenty of experience helping educational institutions upgrade their legacy network infrastructure. In fact, we partnered with ARIN Intermediate Unit 28 to establish a purpose-built, fully owned, operated and maintained fiber-optic network for the district. This type of solution enables educational institutions to deliver enhanced education that accommodates emerging technologies now and into the future.

Reliable fiber optic networks for education are essential for institutions to stay on budget and on time. To explore how we can help modernize your networks, download our data sheet and contact us to speak with one of our experts. Let’s shape the future of education together!

Tags: EdTech, Education, Elearning, K-12, University