Murray School District Builds Internet at Home Solution for Students

Date Published
Oct 15, 2020 11:47:30 AM
Reading Time
Reading Time: 2 min

Jason Eyre is the IT Director at Murray School District located in the Salt Lake Valley in Utah. Jason is championing a first-in-nation district sponsored internet plan using CBRS to ensure connectivity for all of the district's students. Pine Cove Consulting assisted Murray School District in implementing a private LTE network for students across the district in order to drive down the cost of connectivity in low income residences throughout the school district.

Murray School District is located in the heart of the Salt Lake Valley in Utah. The district serves 6200 students and 800 staff members. Jason Eyre leads all IT initiatives as the IT director with his team of six support staff members and eight student interns that assist in maintaining devices in the one-to-one program. Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, Jason had a goal to ensure connectivity for all students in the district. As COVID-19 became prevalent in early 2020, remote learning became a reality and Jason and his staff had to expedite this goal.

As school administrators across the country grapple with connectivity issues in remote learning environments, Jason and his IT team's connectivity plan may provide an example to emulate in school district's across the country.

Murray School District spent $200,000 in funding provided by the CARES Act, to purchase radios, antennas, and SIMs to begin the process of providing LTE network connectivity via the CBRS spectrum to apartment buildings and homes in the district. They currently only providing Wi-Fi to the apartment buildings but may eventually upgrade to LTE. Although this project initially started testing in 2017, the district had plans to implement in the future, but COVID-19 accelerated the need for this solution. With more than 500 households in the district being home to families with 3 or more kids (and often parents working from home as well), bandwidth can become an issue.

With permission from landlords, the district has already taken several of the CBRS access points out of the classroom and placed them onto apartment buildings in the district. So far the district has deployed access points on 10 apartment buildings in the district in order to provide spectrum to the footprint of the district.

The LTE solution is currently being used by teachers and for the security camera system in the district. The plan is to deploy this solution to students in the near future.

Jason describes Pine Cove Consulting as "one of my most trusted IT partners." Pine Cove has been working with Jason and his team for about a year and a half on this, and other IT initiatives.

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