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North West London Jewish School combines a strong bond between Jewish education and the National Curriculum, aiming to give children the knowledge, understanding and life skills to help them flourish in the outside world. They believe in the fundamental ABCD of education: Academics, Behaviour, Creativity and Dialogue, which produces the ideal learning environment for their pupils.

Their vision is for everyone to have a thirst for learning within a high quality, caring, inclusive school striving for excellence for all. Founded in 1945 for the Jewish Community in the area, North West is the school of choice for the local orthodox communities.

Sylvester Saldanha, the IT Manager for the school, is responsible for the IT infrastructure and the smooth running of IT operations throughout the site.

The Challenge

Old hardware causing delays to lessons

Prior to introducing new hardware, North West had deployed a number of SmartBoards and projectors in every classroom around five years ago. However, the ageing units were proving to be problematic and caused daily issues, which were affecting classroom efficiency.

Issues varied from hardware failure to connectivity issues. Teachers did not know which extension to select to display their content, causing delays in starting lessons. Moreover, an issue with dust settling in the corners resulted in pens not functioning as they should. Devices also needed syncing daily, where recalibration was required to overcome connectivity issues.

Sylvester said:

“Each morning, the smartboards had to be recalibrated, which meant that teachers could not start their day on time, which impacted on the pupils’ learning. In addition to recalibrating the smartboards, dust also created an issue where the pens would not work effectively. We had to clean all the smartboards daily to ensure they would work. The projectors caused us ongoing problems where we had to replace the bulbs which weren’t cost- effective for us constantly.”

“The greatest benefit is that there is no longer the need to recalibrate the smartboards every day. There are also
no ongoing maintenance issues, such as replacing bulbs and cleaning the corners. They’re working perfectly for our teachers."

Sylvester Saldanha, IT Manager

The Solution

Easy to use software & interactive displays

Sylvester contacted Stone to discuss their options and decided the 75” and 65” ViewSonic ViewBoard® 4K interactive display and 560 series projectors were the best solutions to deploy in the school. They also opted for the ViewSonic myViewBoard software, which most of the teachers now use thanks to its user-friendly interface and the ability to log in from any classroom, which they were not able to do previously.

“Our Stone Sales Manager communicated with us every step of the way, keeping me updated from start to end providing quotes, answering queries and assisting with the procurement process, and she even replied to me the same day, which made the overall experience with Stone that much easier”

The main reasons for choosing ViewSonic was the simplicity of the interactive displays. The software was also easy to use and navigate. Before purchase, North West received a demo of the displays and projectors, which allowed teachers to see how they could use their new equipment with fresh functionality. This proved to be pivotal with decision making as North West wanted to introduce hardware and software that teachers could easily adopt.

Teachers were impressed they could easily log in from various classrooms quickly, saving time at the start of their day. Connectivity was also seamless where they did not have to log into their computers to use the ViewBoard interactive displays, where previously they did – all they had to do was press the power button on the displays, and they were ready to teach. This was very important to North West. Furthermore, the displays were Windows compatible, and teachers could easily link their computers and change the extension for each display and present it to the class in seconds, which made sharing resources, activities, and videos easy. They also had the option to connect USBs should they need to, just as easily.

Stone delivered the central hardware installation and setup with myViewBoard by ViewSonic software, training was provided by ViewSonic. Stone supported Northwest during the process, where questions were asked frequently and responses and solutions were sent promptly to assist with installation and operation.

The training provided by ViewSonic was delivered remotely due to Covid-19 restrictions, which was challenging; however, both ViewSonic and Stone teams were available to assist with operational queries when they arose.

The training session was also recorded and stored on the cloud, allowing teachers to access it anytime when they needed a refresher. Further resource videos were also accessible to watch 24/7, and support was available from ViewSonic throughout the process and after installation to help resolve ongoing issues, should they occur.

Benefits

Easy to use displays make learning fun and interactive

“The greatest benefit is that there is no longer the need to recalibrate the smartboards every day. They work excellently in all classrooms, and the 75” displays are a good size for the whole class. They are easy for teachers to use; all it takes is pressing the power button and the ViewBoard interactive display power instantly without the need to switch on their computers. There are also no ongoing maintenance issues, such as replacing bulbs and cleaning the corners. They’re working perfectly for our teachers.”

North West now experience the ease of use daily without the need to recalibrate and delay the start of their day. Pupils also find them easy to use, which makes learning fun and interactive.

With teachers’ resources and documents on the cloud, they can access them quickly across the entire school. The easy-to-use software also works effectively, as pupils can interact with their work in ways they could not before the installation.

The overall cost of maintenance has been significantly reduced, as North West no longer need to replace the bulbs for the projectors; which periodically led to decommissioning the projectors ‘out of use’ while they waited for replacement bulbs to arrive.

“Overall, we are very satisfied with the displays and the installation from Stone and ViewSonic. Initially, we did experience an issue with one of the boards two weeks after install; it would not start. However, it was replaced with a new ViewBoard within two weeks, and the issue was resolved. We were satisfied with the outcome.”

It’s safe to say the staff and pupils love the new ViewBoards. The overall experience was much smoother than the last installation of smartboards for North West.

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