TEACH is a Multi-Academy Trust of primary schools comprising two infant schools, two junior schools and an Initial Teacher Training Centre. The academy trains up to 30 primary school teachers per year in Canford Heath, a suburban area of Poole, Dorset. Almost 1500 pupils, ages 4yrs to 11yrs, attend the four schools.
The Trust’s Health and Safety Coordinator faced a challenging task to provide an effective lockdown alert system for each school. Luminite’s Nexus critical alert range was chosen to provide a wireless solution, negating the need for a hard-wired system which would be costly in terms of resources and installation.
Luminite supplied a mixture of internal and external units meaning that no matter where the initial alert point was triggered and due to ‘flood technology’, all pupils and staff both inside and out would hear the voice alert and see the flashing blue beacons. Nexus lockdown units are deliberately blue in colour to differentiate them from fire beacons and there are 32 sounds to choose from to further differentiate them from fire alarms. The fact that the Nexus system could be installed by the Trust’s own Site Managers was a significant advantage, as their installation was quick and easy requiring no specialist or technical skills.
“The Nexus system was installed without any disruption to the school day by the Site teams, following simple instructions supplied by Luminite who were available throughout for back-up support. After fully preparing our pupils for the event, we successfully completed lockdown drills without causing any distress to pupils or staff. There are no ongoing maintenance costs, other than a 3-yearly change of batteries and we would recommend the system to other educational establishments.”
Laura Grainger from Luminite commented: ‘We are conscious that especially in the current climate, school budgets must be spent wisely and we were happy to supply advance demo units to the school in order for them to test thoroughly. A consideration for the TEACH Trust was that they could easily add units to the system if needed and Nexus allows them to do this.’
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St. Joseph’s Catholic Primary School is a vibrant and engaging mid-size primary school with 189 pupils in Halifax, West Yorkshire. The school is highly regarded both academically and socially and places an emphasis on the teachings of the Catholic religion. At the heart of the school is a caring and creative learning environment where all students are made to feel safe. St. Joseph’s recently approached D-Tect based in Leeds, to install a lockdown system to be used in the case of an emergency or threat to children and staff.
For this particular site, a mixture of internal and external call points and sounder/beacons were used with the Master call point situated in the main school office. Three external sounder/beacons were placed around the playground and entrance with a further seven units sited inside the school. Using a proven, secure mesh protocol, when one Nexus unit is activated, it triggers all units in range to sound an audible alert accompanied by a flashing beacon light.
Nexus lockdown units are blue to differentiate them from traditional fire alarms. In line with recent Ofsted guidelines, which state that a lockdown alarm must be distinctive in sound from a fire alarm, there are 32 sounds to choose from. There is also a voice variant available which will sound a lockdown message which can be customised by the school. The caretaker at St. Joseph’s was able to advise the engineers of the best positions for the Nexus alert points. As a result, the installation was completed within a few hours.
Given the high costs involved in wiring a traditional system, both in terms of manpower and installation costs, D-Tect were delighted to be able to offer St. Joseph’s a competitive price for the wireless lockdown system. At the same time, they were commissioned to install an internal public address system for the school’s announcements.
Natalie Marshall, Director at D-Tect commented: “With the introduction of new Ofsted guidelines many schools and colleges are looking to introduce an efficient lockdown system with minimum disruption to their existing systems already in place. It is in this regard that the Nexus lockdown system comes into its own with its unique features. Our campaign offering safety and security checks to schools and colleges within the Yorkshire Region has proved to be a great success, with St Joseph’s being one of our first installations. We have now expanded our coverage to the remainder of the UK, and plan to provide suitable solutions to many more schools and colleges throughout the country.”
Quality Essential Distribution (QED), in Preston, supplied the Nexus units to D-Tect. QED remained on hand to provide technical expertise and support during the installation.
View the Nexus Lockdown System here.
Please contact us if you have any questions about the Nexus system or would like to discuss your bespoke requirements.
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