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Network / IP - Case Studies

Fairfield High Prep School gives children a safer learning environment with Avigilon surveillance system
Fairfield replaced the existing VCR-based analogue surveillance system with a new HD system from Avigilon
Fairfield High replaced the existing VCR-based analogue surveillance system with a new HD system from Avigilon

Driven to become a top performing school district in the state of Alabama, the Fairfield City School System has created a culture of excellence in which students can develop the skills and acquire the knowledge needed to meet the challenges of living in an increasingly complex world. To this end, the Fairfield City School System is committed to delivering a challenging curriculum and providing a safe and orderly learning environment. Turning vision into reality, the Fairfield City School System has deployed an Avigilon High Definition (HD) surveillance system at Fairfield High Preparatory School, ensuring a safe and secure educational experience for its 2,700 students.

Delivering student safety with HD surveillance 

Student safety is extremely important at the Fairfield City School System-and a top priority for parents. In fact, parents can pay to send their children to out-of-zone schools if they believe their educational and safety needs are not being met. "Fairfield City School System's superintendent plugs both the challenging curriculum and sophisticated surveillance system at Fairfield High Preparatory School," notes Wayne Green, CEO at BlackBelt Technologies, the integrator who helped deploy the Avigilon HD surveillance system at Fairfield High Preparatory School. With the overall mission to upgrade the school system's technology infrastructure-from servers and storage to desktop systems and surveillance- Fairfield City School System wanted to build a single platform for improved performance, manageability, and cost-effectiveness. Replacing the outdated surveillance system at Fairfield High was a critical part of the school system's upgrade initiative. "We replaced the existing VCR-based analogue surveillance system at Fairfield High with the Avigilon HD surveillance system for improved image quality, enhanced functionality, and greater peace of mind."

Working with BlackBelt Technologies, Fairfield City School System selected the Avigilon HD surveillance system because of its advanced functionality, superior performance, and cost-effectiveness. "The Avigilon HD surveillance system helps ensure that students are safe and behaving responsibly," comments Green. While Fairfield High hasn't faced any security breaches since deploying the Avigilon surveillance system, the school now has the necessary measures in place in the event of a problem.

A campus-wide security system

Fairfield High Preparatory School has installed 30 one-megapixel Avigilon HD IP cameras inside, four three-megapixel Avigilon HD IP cameras outside, and five Avigilon analogue video encoders to integrate 18 legacy analogue cameras into the HD surveillance system. To maintain a single technology platform as cost-effectively as possible, the school installed the Avigilon Control Center network video management solution on its own hardware.

"Around-the-clock surveillance encourages honesty and good behviour, and allows us to stay focused on learning"

The Avigilon surveillance system covers the entire eight-acre campus including four buildings, staff and student parking lots, and in between buildings, and tracks individuals from the time they enter a building, through the stairwells and hallways, until they reach their destination. With two terabytes of storage, Fairfield High keeps 14 days of surveillance onsite and has full backup capabilities for 30 days of footage. "Fairfield City School System has been so impressed with Avigilon's performance that they plan to install the Avigilon HD surveillance system at all schools over the next few months," says Green.

User-friendly surveillance

Avigilon's overall functionality was a key feature because administrators operate the school's surveillance, not security professionals. "Users are true educators, so when it comes to technology, all they want to do is point and click," explains Green. Users are particularly impressed with Avigilon's image display controls, which make it easy to digitally zoom and pan within an image. "Using Avigilon Control Center software, users can easily zoom in on the face of a dime down the hallway, a testament to both image quality and ease-of-use." Previously, system operators had to walk over to the school's 12 surveillance monitors, get up close, and push a button to view a particular image. Avigilon Control Center software is so user-friendly that training took less than three hours.

Breakthrough surveillance

Users can access the Avigilon surveillance system remotely and view footage at any time
Users can access the Avigilon surveillance system remotely and view surveillance footage at any time

The event-triggered recording functionality that comes with the Avigilon surveillance system is a key advantage, because it eliminates redundancy and reduces bandwidth and storage requirements. Avigilon's breakthrough performance in image quality is another important advantage. "Avigilon's performance is truly head and shoulders above the competition," comments Green. "Administrators at Fairfield City School System have been extremely impressed with Avigilon's picture clarity and zoom definition." The Avigilon analogue video encoders have dramatically enhanced the image quality of Fairfield High's existing analogue cameras as well. Avigilon's high performance and cost-efficient HD IP cameras combined with the Avigilon analogue video encoders help organizations like Fairfield High easily and cost-effectively migrate to HD surveillance.

Users can log into the Avigilon surveillance system remotely though the school system's Virtual Private Network (VPN) to view live and recorded surveillance footage at any time. "The principal does not attend all after-hours events, but can log into the system from home at any time to see what is going on at the school," explains Green. "The students know that the principal can monitor the campus from home, providing added motivation to behave responsibly whenever they are on campus." With 24x7 surveillance, administrators can clock when staff and students enter and leave the school, resulting in better punctuality and attendance. Administrators can access the system from anywhere on the network at anytime, providing another layer of security.

Combining safety and affordability

Cost is an important consideration for budget-driven public schools. "The Avigilon HD surveillance system delivers the performance the Fairfield City School System wanted at the price they needed," states Green. To achieve the same performance, other solutions would have required additional hardware to integrate into the existing infrastructure. Because Avigilon is server-based, it was easily installed on the school system's own hardware. Avigilon's analogue video encoders further reduce the overall investment by allowing the school to leverage existing analogue cameras for longer. According to school administrators, Avigilon was at least 45 percent less expensive than the appliance-driven solutions and ten to 12 percent cheaper than other server-based solutions. "Most importantly, Avigilon delivers a much stronger price/performance ratio than the competition."

Fostering honesty and enhanced learning

The new Avigilon surveillance system covers the entire 8-acre campus
 The new Avigilon surveillance system covers the entire 8-acre campus and tracks individuals' movements

The Avigilon HD surveillance system helps Fairfield High Preparatory School maintain a safe, open environment for both students and staff. The school community knows that the cameras are monitoring campus activity at all times. "It has been made very clear to students that they are being watched," notes Green. "With student awareness so high, potential issues can be alleviated before they become serious."

With its new, sophisticated HD surveillance system in place, Fairfield High is definitely doing its part to keep students safe and on the right track. "The Avigilon HD surveillance system is like a lock - it will keep an honest person honest," concludes Green. "Around-the-clock surveillance encourages honesty and good behaviour, and allows Fairfield High to stay focused on learning."

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