Just a few short years ago, Morton School District 709 in Illinois had serious concerns about the IT infrastructure supporting the delivery of curriculum to its students. Like so many other school institutions in this country, Morton was struggling to meet today’s educational IT challenges such as enabling BYOD and meeting online assessment mandates.
Today the situation is dramatically different. Morton has transformed its IT foundation by implementing a well proven IT-as-a-Service (ITaaS) solution offered jointly by tech industry leaders NetApp, Cisco and VMware. Called FlexPod®, it is a validated and economical path for educational institutions to take their often small and overworked IT departments from simple zones of virtualization to the cloud.
“We needed far more freedom to present our curriculum and offer students new ways to engage with it,” said Troy Teater, Director of Curriculum and Technology at Morton. “Our new solution also provides a superior feedback loop for students to share their opinions, and a more secure channel for mandated testing and the sharing of those test results.”
FlexPod allows schools to securely separate data in both virtualized and non-virtualized environments. Separate tenants do not have access to each other’s resources – operating system, bandwidth, or storage. In other words, it provides truly secure multi-tenancy – perfect for schools districts that do not have large IT budgets or staffs. This security is especially critical due to the confidential nature of the testing data the school must share with the state.
“The unified support model provided by FlexPod was critical for Morton,” said Kipp Bolt, account manager at Netech.” “If there are ever any issues Morton just has to make one support call. And with their new infrastructure, they have the freedom to offer BYOD, One-to-One communication with students using supplied devices, or a combination o f the two approaches.”
See below for a video that demonstrates what an effective, economical IT transformation looks like in K-12.