Jefferson County Schools

100-2,499 Employees

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The top-ranked school in Kentucky in 2013 and 2014 was in Jefferson County. (


Increased Productivity
Network Scalability
Reduce Cost


How do you create a cost-efficient, highly effective network structure for a large school district with more than 100,000 students and 15,000 staff members in 175 facilities?

That’s the complex question that the IT experts and administrators at Jefferson County (Kentucky) Public Schools grappled with when the district decided to deploy a network foundation for modern electronics. The district’s specific objectives for the new deployment included:

  • Establishing a platform that could meet all of the district’s educational and administrative needs in the present and for many years to come
  • Bringing gigabit to the desktop at all facilities
  • Supporting the growing bring-your-own-device (BYOD) trend
  • Providing a strong foundation for the successful deployment of VoIP and wireless technologies throughout the school district

After a detailed RFP process, Jefferson County Public Schools chose Avaya Virtual Enterprise Network Architecture (VENA) Fabric Connect technology deployed on the Avaya Virtual Services Platform 9000, Avaya Virtual Services Platform 7000, Avaya Virtual Services Platform 4000, and Avaya Ethernet Routing Switches 4800.

A Comprehensive, Next-Generation Technology

Avaya Fabric Connect delivers a comprehensive array of network services, including Layer 2 and Layer 3 virtualization with optimized routing and fully integrated support for IP Multicast. Fabric Connect can transform an entire network, from data center to desktop and mobile devices, into a private cloud infrastructure. This makes the network more agile and much easier to configure, manage, and maintain.

Jefferson County Schools

Based on an enhanced implementation of Shortest Path Bridging, a standards-based network virtualization technology, Avaya Fabric Connect can be deployed using simple endpoint provisioning (rather than hop-by-hop) to accelerate time-to-service and reduce the potential for error. Moves, adds, and changes can be done on the fly and without risk, since the core no longer needs to be reconfigured. The technology allows customers to gradually phase out multiple complex legacy technologies and to enable all services through a single, next-generation technology.

In order to conduct the installation for Jefferson County Public Schools in the most efficient and least disruptive way, Avaya and an Avaya channel partner in the area proposed a deployment schedule for the school district’s 175 locations that would take place entirely during the summer when the students were out of school. This was a bold suggestion, since it would require an extremely accelerated process compared to what many experts would have expected.



By sending in teams of engineers to work with technicians from Jefferson County Public Schools, Avaya and the Avaya channel partner were able to move steadily from one county facility to another during the summer recess. After deployment, testing required less than two weeks before the system was ready to go live. (Traditional network implementations often require months of testing.) As promised, the installation and testing of the system for 175 facilities were done entirely during the students’ summer vacation, in time for the network to go live before the start of the next school year. As a result, teachers, students, and administrators were able to access the greatly expanded bandwidth for a wide range of applications, without concern about limitations or downtime.


The school district is in the process of changing its policy to allow students to use their own electronic devices in the schools. It’s estimated that 70 to 75 percent of the more than 100,000 students will eventually be using from one to three (or more) personally-owned devices, including laptops, tablets such as iPad and Android devices, and Windows phones.

Jefferson County Schools

The new Avaya infrastructure will provide reliable service to support this large and diverse quantity of personal mobile devices. The use of personal devices will, in turn, reduce the number of county-owned wireless and wired devices that it would otherwise be necessary to supply to students – thus significantly lowering costs, maintenance, and administrative processes related to the use of county devices.


Avaya and the Avaya channel partner maintain a highly collaborative relationship with the Jefferson County IT team. It’s important for such a large school district to have an excellent support structure because there are many components in the district. When things have to be done right away, the IT team needs to know they can pick up the phone and get help quickly, to so that there can be uninterrupted network service.

The Avaya network Fabric Connect technology affords an extremely stable platform and unparalleled simplicity in setting up new devices, troubleshooting, and migration to the cloud. Operation is highly intuitive, with all equipment offering easy-to-follow instructions. The result is significant savings in time and manpower required to operate and maintain the network.


The Avaya network provides reliability and scalability for virtually unlimited, uninterrupted use of technology in the classroom. It also serves as a robust foundation for upgrading the district’s voice systems and for expanding the wireless coverage.

Jefferson County Schools

Investment protection is a key benefit of the deployment for Jefferson County Public Schools, because the Avaya network is designed to accommodate future technologies for many years to come. Continued cost savings can be achieved as new educational and administrative applications/hardware become available, and total cost of ownership is optimized for a period of several years. Most importantly, educators can develop almost unlimited plans for new ways to engage students through digital technology.

NOTE: photos within this case study do not represent actual scenes within Jefferson County Public Schools.

The top-ranked school in Kentucky in 2013 and 2014 was in Jefferson County. (

Jefferson County Schools
  • Headquarters:

  • United States

  • # Employees:

  • 15000

Jefferson County Public Schools is a public school district located in Jefferson County, Kentucky, that operates 172 schools (89 elementary, 23 middle, 19 high, 2 combined, 39 special), with over 100,000 students. It is governed by an elected seven-member Board of Education. A Superintendent serves as chief executive.