As the world grows increasingly digital, ensuring that all individuals across all locations have access to the newest technological capabilities and opportunities is key. Especially in the sphere of education, where technology is becoming a vital enabler for learning and student fulfillment, ensuring equal access and closing the digital divide is critical for giving all students the best environment for success. 

To support this mission, enable equal access to digital capability and facilitate conversation on digital educational empowerment, FiberLight recently released a case study about its dark fiber deployment for the Amarillo Independent School District (AISD). As a fiber infrastructure provider with more than 20 years of construction experience building mission-critical, high-bandwidth networks, FiberLight was instrumental in ensuring AISD could meet needs for expanded capacity, security and connectivity. 

AISD sought to empower its students with expanded online learning opportunities, as well as enhance the security of its campus by bringing on more security cameras and related deployments. However, current bandwidth and on-site hosting capabilities limited the district’s ability to implement these changes. Furthermore, despite the fact that its existing network did not meet these requirements, AISD’s network service charges were expanding from $14,000 per month for 1Gbps connections to almost half a million due to changes in the Texas State Legislature funding. As a result, AISD was not only in need of a fiber partner that could deliver robust and cost-efficient solutions, it was also in need of a partner that could align with funding support from the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) E-rate program

To position AISD for long-term growth, deliver network agility and control, enable student access to digital opportunities, enhance security and pave the way for new developments, FiberLight was chosen to deploy a 70-mile dark fiber network expansion. With the FCC’s Category 1 E-rate program and the Texas State Legislature’s matching funds, the dark fiber network buildout was 100 percent subsidized, and 80 percent of the equipment was covered as well.

The AISD’s network was able to be cost-efficiently augmented across its entire footprint with greater control, enhanced security and high-capacity connectivity, meeting each of the district’s short-term and long-term goals by provisioning a highly capable and reliable network environment. As the district looks into building a private LTE network that would offer connectivity to student and staff homes and facilitate important remote education opportunities, this dark fiber also creates a necessary foundation for this potential development.

“The goal of AISD is to prepare students for life beyond high school, making college readiness top of mind. Reliable connectivity is critical for gaining access to classroom technology that takes college preparedness to new levels,” said Jeff D. Roller, CTO of AISD. “Through our partnership with FiberLight, we feel confident in achieving our goals and look forward to the opportunities that FiberLight may afford other businesses in town and the future growth of Amarillo.” 

To download and read the case study in its entirety, please click here

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