Network Cabling for Schools and Colleges

Structured Cabling in Schools
Network Installation for Schools
What are the standards for DfE cabling

Structured Cabling in Schools

Why is network infrastructure so important in schools?

A robust and reliable network infrastructure is a key resource in schools these days. With increasing reliance on on-line resources such as libraries, research databases, educational websites, and multimedia content, the demand for data services is becoming one of the critical factors in the learning experience.

Digital Learning

Technology is transforming the way in which schools educate. More and more schools and colleges are using digital platforms to manage, communicate and collaborate in everyday tasks and assignments. Digital systems allow for more flexible participation such as remote learning and co-operation. Importantly, students can easily access educational materials from home, and engage in online discussions and activities.
Assessment and monitoring is also made more straightforward and efficient using digital systems.

School Admin

Schools rely heavily on network infrastructure for various administrative functions, including student information systems, attendance tracking, scheduling, and communication with parents.

Future proofing

As technology advances, it critical that schools and colleges keep up to date with progress, not only to ensure that schools can adapt to future developments but to prepare student for the skill they will need in the digital world.

For these reasons a strong network infrastructure is a fundamental cornerstone for schools.

What is network cabling?

Network cabling is the backbone that connects computers, servers, switches, and other devices to create a communication network. This involves the installation of copper or fibre optic cables, connectors, and other components that transmit data signals between devices.

Why is network cabling so important?

Properly installed network cabling is essential for ensuring high-speed data transmission, minimal interference, and stable connectivity within a network infrastructure.

What are the standards for DfE cabling

Network cabling standards published by the DfE – guidelines from the Department for Education, Published  23 March 2022 and Updated: 24 January 2024,

"Meeting digital and technology standards in schools and colleges"

Network cabling standards for schools and colleges

Copper cabling should be Category 6A (Cat 6A)

Category 6A cabling provides greater data capacity than previous copper cabling standards. It will provide schools and colleges the flexibility to increase the volume and specification of the technology they will need to connect to their networks.

Optical fibre cabling should be a minimum 16 core multi-mode OM4

OM4 optical fibre cable provides capacity to transfer data over longer distances and plays a critical role in making sure that data is transferred around the school or college network effectively. This happens by linking server and hub rooms together either within the same building, or different buildings on the school or college campus. Faulty or low specification cabling will have a negative impact on the quality of network performance.

New cabling should be installed and tested in line with the manufacturer’s guidance, warranty terms, and conditions

The quality and specification of your school’s or college’s cabling (passive infrastructure) plays a critical role in making sure that data is transferred around the school or college. Faulty or low specification cabling will have a negative impact on the quality of network performance.

Cabling installation and testing

Professional cabling installation and testing are crucial to establishing a reliable and efficient network infrastructure. Appropriate installation techniques ensure that cables are organised, safe from physical damage, and routed efficiently to minimise possible signal interference.

Once the cabling is installed, thorough testing is performed to verify its integrity, performance, and adherence to both DfE guidelines and industry standards. Testing procedures typically include checks for continuity, cable length, signal strength, and attenuation. Specialised testing equipment and certification devices are used to identify any faults, or other issues that could impact network performance.

Full-Service Network Cabling for Schools and Colleges

If you are looking for a reliable and professional data cabling company, then look no further than NM Cabling Solutions. We are a leading provider of data cabling services to industry, commerce, schools and colleges, we have a wealth of experience in installing and maintaining data cabling systems in schools and other commercial premises.
Contact us for a FREE no obligation survey or for general advice on network infrastructure.