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Biometrics - Case Studies

Salto's access control system at work in BSF School
Salto’s access control system offers security to BSF School
One of the uses of Salto's access control system is to secure the schools laptop computers
Nailsea School in North Somerset, a one school pathfinder project in the Government's Building Schools for the Future (BSF) programme has installed a stand alone electronic access control solution from Salto Systems.

As the biggest-ever school buildings investment programme, BSF aims to rebuild or renew nearly every secondary school in England. Its role is to ensure that secondary pupils learn in 21st-century facilities and investment enabling them to do so will be rolled out to every part of England over 15 waves, subject to future public spending decisions. So by 2016 major rebuilding and remodelling projects (at least three schools) should be underway in every local authority (LA) across the country.

North Somerset Council is among the most recent waves of this project, and was allocated just under £29 million to rebuild the school on its current site, turning it into an attractive and functional new hub for its role as a technology and media arts college. The result is a modern, steel-framed two-storey school clad with brick and coloured panels, which accommodates some 1,500 students and staff. It replaces the former 50 year old comprehensive school buildings which have been demolished to provide space for a new car park, playing fields, sports facilities and pitches.

"As the premier education sector tailored access control system, the XS4 solution was ideal for Nailsea School," commented Jim Caola, Sales Director of Gem Security Centre Ltd, Salto's local Independent Business Partner who carried out the installation.

"Working in partnership with consulting and business services group Mouchel, who would deliver IT hardware, software and infrastructure as well as a five-year managed service for the new school, and Steve Richards Deputy Head and the school's Project Manager, we designed a flexible mix of on-line wall readers and stand alone handle sets, providing a highly secure access control solution that was perfectly tailored to meet their brief."

"Entry into the school for both students and staff is controlled via Mifare photo ID cards which are presented to one of six on-line perimeter wall readers at key access points around the building.

Salto's aim on this project was to deliver an access control system that is robust, reliable and dependable 

As well as access, the cards are also used for e-registration, printing, photocopying and library functions and the three dining areas in the school - a main restaurant, a chill café and a juice bar - use them to operate a cashless card system for all payments," Caola continued.

Chris Perry, Nailsea's Facilities Manager said: "An established reputation in the educational security market made our choice of Salto an easy decision. The fact that the XS4 solution has been installed in so many centres of learning including both Oxford and Cambridge Universities as well as many of the new academies being built means they could offer us a tried and tested solution. We were particularly impressed with its flexibility, enabling us to configure the system to perfectly suit our needs so that we can get maximum benefit from the technology while providing a secure environment for both students and staff."

One of the really strong features we really liked was its powerful audit trail capability. This was a key requirement since one of the many uses of the new access control system is to secure the schools laptop computers. These are kept in 10 -12 portable trolleys, each containing up to 15 laptops, and stored in a purpose built secure area within the school. Teachers book these trolleys out when they are required for lessons, usually two trolleys at a time, which are then returned to storage at the end of the lesson. The fact that we can track these trolleys via the XS4's audit trail function, downloading information on who accessed the storage room and when, is a key feature," he continued.

Ramesh Gurdev, Salto Systems UK Sales Manager, said: "Our aim on this project was to deliver an access control system that is robust, reliable and dependable. We have more than achieved this. The XS4 system linked to our SVN capability means they now have the ability to manage an unlimited number of doors and users in a single solution. Any future expansion needs are already built-in to the system, without any need to upgrade at a later date, ensuring that Nailsea will always be able to securely control who has access to what, where and when at all times."



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