Is A Cloud-Managed Network Right for Your School?

March 13, 2017 Lisa Yeaton

Chávez/Huerta K-12 Preparatory Academy, one of the “Best High Schools in the US” went from a lack of Wi-Fi to an abundance of Wi-Fi bandwidth. By deploying 70 APs managed by ExtremeCloud, the network seamlessly supports a large BYOD initiative, all managed from a centralized location by a single network manager. On top of that, the one network manager has the ability to manage the network remotely, solving issues quickly wherever they are.

“Even if I take a day off, I’m never ‘off’ and able to get into the network and troubleshoot a wireless issue. The ease, stability, and interoperability were reasons why I chose Extreme.” -Loretta Cruz, IT Coordinator, Chávez/Huerta K-12 Preparatory Academy

Managing your network from the cloud could simplify your network environment and reduce costs. A Cloud-Managed Network (CMN) uses a SaaS model to securely provide ease of use and simplicity for control of on-premise network devices, such as wireless access points and switches. For very large districts, an on-premise solution may be best. However, for small or growing districts that wish to simplify the overall network management, a CMN solution could be ideal for your school. Many schools have already migrated to the cloud with their email, data storage, and teaching modules to improve efficiency and reduce costs. A cloud-managed Wi-Fi network could be the next step.  

Cloud-managed networks are appealing to small schools or those with a low IT budget because of the potential cost savings and simplicity. Cloud gives these schools peace-of-mind, knowing the solution will scale over time. In this case, a solution built from the ground up offers a true multi-tenant service that expands and contracts dynamically as the school transforms by offering pay-as-you-grow network expansion. CMN also allows for flexible infrastructure options to support new learning applications. The Extreme Networks on-demand webinar, Cloud Managed Wi-Fi for K-12 Education, describes the benefits of cloud-based network management and whether it is the right solution for your school.

ExtremeCloud provides centralized configuration and utilizes zero touch APs. Extreme’s approach does not compromise or leave holes in the network. Schools that want on-premise or cloud-managed networks can rest assured that Wi-Fi access points will be fully compatible with both cloud-based and on-site network management. Users reap cash flow savings because ExtremeCloud is subscription-based and does not need an on-premise controller. Customers pay only for what they use and nothing more.

"ExtremeCloud is easy to use, yet the full-featured interface is exactly what you want in a cloud configuration interface. Being able to shift the access points back under our on-premise management system when necessary, and provide unparalleled support to the various applications and mobile devices on the network, adds a lot of value to an already great product line."
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Greg Briggs, Network Manager, Pacific Lutheran University

ExtremeCloud is an easy to use and infinitely scalable cloud-based solution. It supports, transforms and simplifies school networks. The difficult task of supporting your school’s transformation while ensuring consistent user experience to end users is simplified with cloud-managed networks. Optimum user experience is delivered anywhere and any-time because Extreme provides an exceptionally high quality of experience. The flow-based architecture behind ExtremeCloud allows schools to create and enforce policies at the AP where the users connect.

“Managing multiple switches and access points from different vendors is challenging and time consuming for our small IT department.  When installing our ExtremeCloud access points we were amazed by the zero-touch deployment; the APs practically configured themselves and the installation only took about fifteen minutes. We saw an immediate increase in wireless speed. With ExtremeCloud our IT department was able to easily install, configure, troubleshoot and maintain our wired/wireless network under a single interface, making further positive impacts on both staff and users' experiences across campus facilities." – A West Coast K-12 Academy 

Simplicity is a major benefit of ExtremeCloud and a vital feature for schools with limited IT staffs. Our white paper, Is A Cloud Managed Network Right For You?, explains the many benefits of cloud-managed networks as well as the trade-offs. With ExtremeCloud, networks run efficiently and are always secure. This scalable solution is one of innovative simplicity. Depending on your circumstances, cloud-managed Wi-Fi networks may be the appropriate solution for your school to reduce costs, save time, provide ease of use, and scalable growth.

Check out these ExtremeCloud resources for more information on Cloud-Managed Networks:

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