Marshalltown High School is part of a pilot program designed to increase the level of security via a dedicated Wi-Fi network.
The program known as WISE (Wi-Fi Internet for School Emergencies) School was announced on July 25 in the State Capital by Gov. Terry Branstad, Iowa Department of Public Safety Commissioner Roxann Ryan and Marshalltown High School Principal Jacque Wyant.
Two other schools are part of the pilot project from Martensdale and Norwalk.
This Wi-Fi network will be a dedicated, private and safe system for public safety agencies and emergency responders to use when they are responding to incidents at schools. First responders will be able to access critical IT assets and be able to upload and download information from the school while in their vehicles or patrol cars.
The WISE School system will allow first responders to connect to an access point and be able to view surveillance cameras at school districts that have IP-based surveillance systems before they arrive at the scene. The Iowa Communications Network (ICN) is working with three Wi-Fi vendors: Aruba, Cisco and Fortinet for this project.
The existing ICN backbone structure already in place at all school districts across the state will allow for the WISE system to connect to the broadband fiber. There is no cost to the school to assist with this pilot. This system is secure and will only be made available to those authorized to access it.
“The safety of our children and educators in the state is a top priority and the WISE School pilot project is just one more way our state is working together with local and county officials to strengthen and ensure that our schools are safe,” said Commissioner Ryan.
If the field testing of these pilot projects is successful throughout the next year, the Iowa DPS hopes to expand the project to other schools across the state.