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Eastern Community Campus

The opening of Eastern High School was the culmination of a three-year, £26m project, jointly funded by Cardiff Council and the Welsh Government through the 21st Century Schools programme. The Eastern Community Campus, built on former Cardiff & Vale College land on Trowbridge Road, replaced the existing Eastern High in Rumney, with the new campus housing 1,200 pupils from Eastern High, as well as 300 Cardiff & Vale College students.

The project sought to create an innovative partnership that addressed all technology requirements, allowing the two institutions to share the site seamlessly from day one of the school becoming operational, whilst also providing pupils with a smooth transition from GSCE’s to post-16 education and training.

Circle IT was awarded the contract in Autumn 2017 and began the project working with the school to shape the bespoke solutions, which would allow them to meet the on-site challenges of working in a shared facility.

The challenge

The school needed a technology platform that was robust and could adapt and cope with future changes.

Working to a tight deadline to meet the opening of Eastern Community Campus, Circle IT needed to ensure a solution that would allow both organisations to share the same facility and one that was ready by the time it welcomed students in the January.

The solution

The project saw Circle IT creating a network using Dell EMC Networking S4000 series core switches and N2000 series edge switches. The entire site was kitted out with servers based on Dell EMC Poweredge R630 with Microsoft Windows 2016 Hyper V, allowing reliability and performance for all 1,500 users.

Our work didn’t stop with the newly implemented technology, we also provided considerable device management to support a mixed use of systems as well as end user device imaging and deployment.

The benefits

Circle IT’s Account Manager on the Eastern Community Campus project, shares: ‘We put in a lot of effort into recognising the challenges of the environment, especially when it comes to working in the education sector. Knowing the end goals of an institution helps us understand what we can bring to the partnership.’

As well as the successful delivery of the project, Circle IT provide Eastern with comprehensive managed IT support with Circle IT staff based on campus.

We chose Circle IT due to their fantastic reputation within the education sector, receiving good reviews from other institutions whilst their willingness to listen to our project needs was paramount.

The best thing about Circle IT is that they listen and are willing to work closely with us to meet our needs, such as the complex requirements of sharing our network with another institution, which they implemented smoothly.

We’ve been very impressed the partnership and the quality of their staff.

Eastern High School Headteacher, Armando Di Finizio

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