The Quest Academy combines passion for success with high expectations of their students.  Strong moral values underpin the ethos of the school, who welcome students from a wide range of backgrounds and expect all families to value and support the moral values at the heart of all aspects of Academy life.

The Quest Academy currently has 686 pupils aged 11-18, and plans to accommodate 1,150 pupils at full capacity within five years.

ICT requirements

The new £16 million state-of-the-art building was purpose-built in Croydon for students of The Quest Academy in 2014, in order that every student is given the opportunity to achieve academic excellence. They required the most advanced, state-of-the-art technology to be installed throughout the building so that students can take full advantage of the educational opportunities available from today’s technological advances.

The Quest Academy went out to tender for the supply of their entire ICT teaching endpoint devices, including AV equipment, as well as a sophisticated technical solution for their Auditorium and digital signage across the entire building.

Centerprise International (CI) was awarded the ICT Services contract to support the Quest Academy’s move to a new, purpose-built facility.

Design and implementation

CI worked very closely with the Quest Academy’s IT team to complement their already developed strategy, offering sound advice based on their own experience and expertise. Working closely with Wates the Builders was a big challenge to ensure that the AV equipment was fully integrated within the building. CI’s project manager attended multiple meetings with Wates to ensure that the walls were sufficiently strong.  Cable runs also had to be taken into account and Ci measured each of the 57 classrooms individually to ensure that there was no difference in the layouts. This work included the installation of a demo room so that the builders, school and Ci could sign off and approve the layout, ensuring identical configuration in each classroom.

The Academy opened their doors with fully-functional ICT in place, allowing the teachers to work in an environment that is conducive to adopting more innovative and engaging ways to educate students. After opening, the Academy used the remaining capital from the Education Funding Agency (EFA) budget to fund a large video wall for their Reception and stairway wall.  This was installed out of school hours over a week-end, to avoid interruptions to the teaching schedule.

Technical solution

The Quest Academy’s ICT solution included a wide range of devices and peripherals, an area in which CI is very experienced.  CI’s role included the installation and commissioning of the following items:

  • 65 administration and teaching devices (desktops and laptops)
  • 57 teaching room setups (Dell All-In-One device with 87” SMARTBoard projector and board solution with visualisers)
  • 6 ICT rooms, comprising 180 desktops with headphones and microphones
  • Music Recital Room and Drama Studio equipment, comprising 17 Apple 21” iMacs, 17 music keyboards and 34 headphones suitable for music lessons
  • 2 rooms of student mobile devices, 2 trolleys and 60 laptops
  • Printing solution, comprising multiple MFPs and workgroup printers with biometric print release and print management
  • Trust-e; cashless catering solution
  • 22 digital signs across the site
  • 1 large video wall for the Reception area (4 x 55” edge to edge screens)
  • 1 hall projection system

Expectations exceeded

“I have been really impressed with how quickly the project was set up, but completely bowled over by how it has been implemented so thoroughly. Support from CI, whether on the phone or through site visits, has been excellent. Getting suggestions and being listened to definitely makes a difference. I just wanted to say how pleased the Academy has been with our choice of Centerprise.”

– Andrew Allison, ICT Director at the Quest Academy.

“The ICT solution that CI designed and implemented for The Quest Academy has served its purpose: it’s simple to use, intuitive and benefits from some of the most-up-to-date technology in the market place. We are delighted that the staff and pupils alike can now use their technology suite to its full potential, and CI is always on hand for ongoing consultancy and support issues.”

– Mike Brett, Education Sales Account Manager at CI

Sub-contractor management

During the initial ICT project meeting, it was noted that there were cross over in responsibilities relating to the Auditorium installation. The responsibility matrix required the building contractor to install the cabling and lighting to the Auditorium and the ICT contractor to install the projector. CI supplied the projector but recommended that the installation of the projector was passed to the building contractor, to optimise the installation and reduce the customer’s installation costs.

CI also integrated an Audio Visual partner into their supply chain as a sub-contractor, forming part of their rigorous ISO 9001:2008 processes.

CI provided staff and administration ICT training as part of the transition from the old to new Academy, including training on the use of the smart boards, printing solution, cashless catering system and music suite.

The Academy’s IT team has full responsibility for managing the implemented solution, which is running over a five-year period, but they can call on CI’s technical expertise as and when required.

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