Improving Student Engagement at Richmond Road Primary 30-Nov-2015 Edwards
Richmond Road Primary School share how they worked with Edwards Sound to design and install a state-of-the-art paging system. Principal Jonathan Ramsay and his staff were motivated by a desire to increase student engagement with the many activities on offer during the school day. Rather than install a costly and dated system requiring audio cabling throughout the school, they selected the 2N public address system that would let them use their existing LAN / WiFi network.
Audio over IP systems run over local area networks (LANs) rather than using audio cabling, taking advantage of a building’s Wi-Fi or network cabling. This meant that any speakers installed in the prefabs could easily be relocated to new buildings in the future. Zoning is done via some easy to use software. The system can also be linked to VOIP telephone systems meaning that anyone can make an announcement using their phone in place of a microphone, making the intercom system particularly accessible. And the 2N system came with bird songs included and these could be turned off at weekends and holidays.
Edwards went away and designed a system that would meet all their needs and the proposal was submitted for Ministry approval. Once Richmond Road had the green light, the staff and students waited with anticipation.
“I have no idea how we survived without a paging system,” says Jonathan. “It is hard to believe but we largely avoided sending messages to classrooms and when we did we used a student runner, which meant finding a student and then writing the message out.” Jonathan’s office staff have found it extremely easy to use. “You click on an icon on the desktop, push a button to speak and a button to stop. There is a panel down the side to select the classroom, block or whole school,” explains Jonathan. The school is very excited about the potential the system offers for student empowerment next year. Senior leaders who organise activities at morning break and lunch time will be trained and take responsibility for making their own announcements.
For the staff, having a modern IP based system really is a whole new world, “They are really excited about the ability to customise the system and zones, for us to be able to contact them and for student leaders to do the announcements - they didn’t know what they were missing.”
And Richmond Road isn’t finished there. “We intend to use it to its full capacity and are still exploring the possibilities such as running a radio station across the school, using the telephones for paging and connecting it to our alarm system to play automated messages in the event of a lockdown. And we are definitely excited about experimenting with our bell system!”