MOT Charter High School

MOT Charter School in Middletown Delaware was planning an expansion to include High School Students. The new building needed the latest in educational technologies and robust CCTV and Access Control systems to ensure student safety. Both systems required a strong voice & data cabling infrastructure to operate effectively. Assurance Media delivered a complete solution in just 90 days, earning the Associated Builders and Contractors Inc. Delaware Chapter’s Excellence in Specialty Construction Award for 2015.

MOT Charter EIC Award

Background

MOT Charter School was founded as a public charter school with the vision of a K-8 school where parents are truly in partnership with the staff and administration, are welcomed into the school, and have a strong connection to the school. The founders of the school were committed to choice in public education and strongly believed in building-level leadership. MOT Charter is committed to meeting the needs of each and every student, regardless of where they are on the learning continuum. Their goal is to prepare students to be creative, intuitive, and analytical thinkers. The curriculum is designed to emphasize problem solving.

Situation

In April 2014 the Assurance Media MOT Charter design/build team began putting together the infrastructure and technology layout of the proposed high school. This design process was exceptionally detailed with the primary objective being to provide fall 2015’s inaugural student body with nothing less than the most technologically advanced high school in the state. Assurance Media and the leadership at MOT spent a good amount of time before the RFP going over the entire plan to add, replace or remove certain components to maximize the dollar value of our solution for the high school.

The final plans called for a robust network cabling infrastructure, highly collaborative learning tools, excellent building communication equipment and a secure premise security solution. Working with MOT Charter and the state technology department, Assurance Media’s flexibility on work hours and products made us the right choice for an exceptionally accelerated construction schedule. On March 9th 2015 the Assurance Media build team stepped onto MOT campus for the first time and got down to business. The theme of this project was fast and efficient. The building was scheduled for occupancy testing and certification in mid June, giving Assurance Media just three short months to install and test all systems while keeping job site safety and quality craftsmanship in the front of our minds.

Solution & Implementation

Cabling Infrastructure

The modern design of the building required voice & data cables to be run through extreme angles, over various elevation changes and around other critical building components to connect end users to the main and independent distribution rooms. Assurance Media worked closely with MOT leadership in deciding where the 40 wireless access points were located, allowing MOT staff to focus on the multitude of other operations taking place around the new building. In total 536 Category 6e cables were dropped totaling over 32 miles of network and fiber optic cabling for the user stations, security equipment, learning devices, building communications and more.

Educational Technologies

Leading edge educational technology is what current students need to compete in today’s marketplace. Assurance Media installed leading edge Epson BrightLink Pro collaborative network projectors in classrooms throughout the school to give both educators and students exceptional learning capabilities. These Epson projectors are “ultra-short throw” to cast virtually no shadow on the display surface and can connect to smart devices and 6 surface-touch users simultaneously for the ultimate digital learning environment. The BrightLinks are both network-connected and capable of functioning without directly connecting a computer for wireless video streaming and efficient setup. Epson’s BrightLink line was the perfect choice, projecting images onto whiteboards for touch and digital stylus use or traditional ink pen functionality. With our outstanding manufacturer relationships, Assurance Media was able to attain special educational pricing as well as an additional year warranty for all Epson products installed on site.

Building Communications

For communication around the building, Assurance Media installed a cutting edge Ethernet based Valcom Class Connection System. 125 intercoms were positioned in classrooms and common areas for precise and clear sound transfer with caller location tracking around the building. The Valcom system offers unprecedented capabilities and customization for MOT users. 16 school bell schedules can be programmed with calendar based scheduling capabilities. Valcom PC clients give administrators an easy way to manage time around campus. Network connected clocks assure everyone is on the same prescribed schedule at any given time and custom tones and messages give the system a personalized MOT Charter feel. Most importantly, the Valcom system allows teachers to communicate with administration across the building with a push of a button, allowing them to stay with students yet still be in contact with others if an emergency situation arises.

Premise Security

The final piece of the MOT Charter project was an effective and reliable S2 Security System with an ExaqVision Premise Security Server. Assurance Media installed 82 high-definition network enabled cameras, building an intricate web of CCTV coverage in and around the entire property. Electronic Access control points provide safe and secure access to students and visitors while locking out those without clearance from entering the school. The S2 Systems Duty Log and event widgets are providing instant video & audio notifications of anyone entering or exiting one of the 29 entry points. A state of the art intrusion detection system was installed, giving administrators notification of anyone attempting to access the property. All of these security features were wired to a central monitoring station for easy and effective use by MOT staff both at the station and remotely over the web from anywhere in the world.

Assurance Advantage

The greatest value we provide at Assurance Media is that we deliver multiple system integration from one single source vendor. Had MOT Charter used separate companies for cabling, premise security and audiovisual systems there is a very slim chance that all 3 companies would have been able to work together fast enough to meet the aggressive 3 month deadline while still safely providing an expert quality solution without going over budget. Effective communication was the key to keeping everyone involved up to date with what was completed and what came next across each system we installed. Our team worked closely and was in constant communication with MOT Charter leadership and the general contractor. This level of communication kept our team from interfering with other building operations. Constant scheduling changes, coupled with the fact that we first arrived on site a few months after we typically would, made each day to day decision critical to the project’s overall success on time and on budget. We could not afford to overlook even the smallest of details throughout the duration of the project, and that pressure brought out the absolute best in each member of our team. This level of commitment to customer satisfaction and willingness to give 110% are core values at Assurance Media, and the MOT Charter High School build proved those values to be the key to delivering outstanding results to our clients.

 

For more about MOT Charter High School, click here.