K-12 District Improves Reach of Critical Messages with InformaCast
Three Schools, One Building
Necedah Area School District, a rural district located in central Wisconsin, houses its elementary, middle and high school in one building. With 700 students and 130 staff and faculty, communicating messages to the right audiences is a crucial component of running day-to-day operations smoothly.
Kris Saylor, director of technology, had the opportunity to renovate the district’s overhead paging system, he knew he needed a solution that would provide better reach than the current analog system. With three schools in one building, he needed to be able to designate messages for the right audience, and upgrade his speakers to ones that offered better sound quality.
“We had speakers placed every six feet throughout the school, but no one could hear anything,” said Saylor.
He needed a system that was flexible, easy-to-use and reached everyone. For that, he turned to InformaCast from Singlewire Software.
See how Necedah implemented InformaCast
Bringing Everything Together
Using Advanced Network Devices, Saylor installed IP speakers throughout the building to provide clear audio and scrolling announcements. With the help of InformaCast he and his team have been able to drastically improve how they schedule bells, configure zones and send messages.
Currently, the district has zones set up to reach everyone in the building, a zone each for the elementary, middle, and high school, one combined middle and high school zone, one zone for outside speakers and one zone specifically for the gymnasium.
This streamlined the steps needed to make a page, saving time when critical information needed to be shared. This includes scrolling text that appears on the digital displays of the IP speakers.
“What I like most is the usability of InformaCast,” explained Saylor. “It has a simple user interface and works without complications. And the potential to expand its use for other situations is very appealing.”
A Bigger, Bolder Future
While the district primarily uses InformaCast for its bells and overhead PA system, Saylor is working on expanding the district’s use of InformaCast to take further advantage of the system’s safety features, including severe weather, evacuations and lockdowns.
In addition, the district is looking to tie InformaCast into its door security system, and utilize the flashing lights on its IP speakers to indicate certain situations, such as tornado warnings.