With over 24,000 students enrolled in the Vancouver, Washington K-12 School District, keeping classrooms outfitted with current generation technology can be a costly process for Steve Bratt, Director for Technology Infrastructure and Operations.
The Tech Decision
The Vancouver School District currently has 38 buildings consisting of elementary, middle, high schools and special programs. Bratt and the rest of his team oversee all technology across the district including classroom projectors, teacher laptops and phones, and student laptops and tablets. Throughout all the buildings, Bratt noted there are over 1,000 projectors in service.
The district is currently planning and constructing ten new buildings, with the first opening in 2019. As longtime customers of Hitachi, Bratt has specified the new LP-AW4001 ultra-short-throw laser projectors for all the new classrooms.
As members of Hitachi’s New OneVision Kids program, the Vancouver School District is able to plan and budget for the new projectors with the specialized member pricing. Members of the OneVision Kids program also receive direct access to Hitachi sales and service specialists, advanced replacement and supplemental warranties including a five-year projector warranty and one-year lamp warranty for lamp based models.
“When we started planning for the new buildings, my team and I did a lot of research to make sure we were buying and installing the best classroom technology,” says Bratt. “We have short-throw projectors from Hitachi installed in all of our existing classrooms, but we wanted to find something brighter for the new buildings. We were originally planning to switch to flat panels in all the classrooms, but after speaking with teachers we realized how important white board space is and decided on the new Hitachi ultra-short-throw laser projectors instead. The new laser projectors are much brighter than previous models, have a long, maintenance-free life without bulbs to replace, and can project straight onto the white board without losing any space.”
In the new buildings, Bratt is looking to install the new LP-AW4001 projectors with a cross-platform wireless A/V receiver to allow wireless connectivity from any device. Then, teachers and students will be able to easily connect laptops and tablets to the projector from anywhere in the room without worrying about where the wires to feed the projector are located.
As the Vancouver School District continues construction on its latest buildings, Bratt and his team will install the projectors in the new buildings and refresh the old buildings as funding allows.
“We’ve been working with Hitachi for a while, and they’re always very responsive,” says Bratt. “We had a few issues with our very first Hitachi installation, and they sent over a team of engineers from Japan so they could see what the issues were and fix them quickly. From day one, they’ve always made sure our needs are met. When you combine their customer service with their price points, Hitachi truly is the best option.”