Worthington School District Implements New Fiber Optic Network

Worthington School District of Ohio today announced it has implemented a state-of-the-art-network connecting 21 locations.

The network consists of 10 Gigabit point-to-point circuits for 18 sites feeding into a 100 Gigabit ring connecting the three Worthington Schools’ hub sites. Operationally, the network design allowed the district to consolidate servers and storage sites, improving its ability to manage equipment at all 18 sites.

“We were looking to develop a centralized network to maximize the effective utilization of technology,” said Keith Schlarb, Director of Information Technology at Worthington.

Schlarb’s approach was critical for the district in a number of areas. One critical platform was the implementation of core common standards in-line with The Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC). This entails a set of assessments that measure whether students are on track to be successful in college and their careers. They are high quality, computer-based K–12 assessments in Mathematics and English Language Arts/Literacy giving teachers, schools, students, and parents better information whether students are on track in their learning and for success after high school, as well as tools to help teachers customize learning to meet student needs.

“The key to our equation was upgrading our bandwidth to support these initiatives,” said Schlarb. “We partnered with Fibertech Networks to build a fully scalable network that can better support our needs now and well into the future.”

For the 9500 students and 800 teachers within the Worthington School District, the new network has produced immediate results. Issues such as using web video sites, and video communication such as Skype or Adobe Connect - are now possible without pauses, connection loss, or latency issues. Web-based instructional software is also now being widely used, with students making full use of instructional time on devices.

According to Schlarb, the new network opens the doors for the district to increase availability for technology and other computer devices for student use without concern for bandwidth. With increased access to online instructional materials Worthington schools is well positioned to take advantage of the most cutting-edge learning and teaching tools.

“The network also allows us to provide Virtual Desktop Infrastructure for district users, centralizing support and maintenance of desktop applications,” he added. “We are confident that whatever on-line instruction or technology tools the district decides to implement in the future the bandwidth is available.”