Converted from a hotel, High Peak School is in a unique setting in beautiful countryside on the edge of the Peak District. It provides residential education for children with social, emotional and behavioural difficulties [SEBD], between the ages of 9-18 years. The school provides a safe and creative learning environment for children for whom mainstream education has not met their needs.
This also presents the school staff with some unique challenges, and the ability to respond quickly to an incident is paramount, in order to ensure the safety of student and teacher alike.
UK two-way radio system supplier Brabourne Communications met these requirements by integrating the SMC Gateway into their supplied radio communication system. The result was an advanced digital radio platform and a comprehensive suite of capabilities that integrates the onsite voice communications network with fire alarm, intruder alarm and the Building Management System [BMS].
The system, marketed by the company as the BrabourneAlert, allows staff to make radio calls from anywhere on site, send and receive text messages, make and receive telephone calls from on site extensions or the outside world and transmit emergency calls of various types including lone worker, man down and manual emergency. Staff can also be tracked around the site [whether indoors or outdoors] with the optional personnel location application.
In addition the system allows maintenance staff to carry out their tasks across the site in the most productive and efficient way whilst ensuring their own safety as lone workers. The next phase will see BrabourneAlert connected to the onsite biomass plant. This will provide maintenance staff with early warning of any problems such as low fuel levels etc so they can respond immediately.
Kedleston Schools Group Operations Manger, Chris Kennedy said:
“I have used an earlier version of BrabourneAlert at another college and it transformed the way we were able to manage our resources and respond effectively to various events. This new digital system builds on that experience and delivers better security, greater capacity and gives us more confidence we can better manage incidents when they occur”
The BrabourneAlert system comprises a single Motorola DR3000 digital repeater which provides two virtual channels allowing multiple simultaneous voice and data calls, thereby improving staff safety. The single repeater provides coverage across the site and the surrounding area allowing staff to stay in contact even when away from the school.
The repeater is integrated with two BrabourneAlert modems which provide the link between the radio system and the various on-site alarm panels, including the SIP interface to allow radios to make and receive telephone calls.. Motorola DP4800 digital portable radios were selected for teaching and maintenance staff and these radios offer a full keypad and large colour display.