The Smithdon High School, a part of the West Norfolk Academies Trust, was the birthplace of the ‘brutalist’ style of architecture in Britain.

In keeping with its tradition of embracing modernity, the school has evolved into an institution offering purpose-built facilities to prepare students for a digital and highly connected world.

smithdon school

The Challenge

During a late August storm in 2018, the school’s phone system was struck by lightning and suffered irreparable damage. After a thorough inspection of the damage to the systems and assessing the current and future needs of the school, we recommended the installation of a completely new system, identifying the Mitel Office 250 as the ideal solution to address the school’s on-site and remote telephony requirements.

Our team of experts had just one month to install the system before the new school year began in September 2018 to ensure minimal inconvenience to the staff, students, and management.

The Solution

We consulted with the school’s administration and front desk staff and encouraged them to install the MiVoice Office 250. The most attractive feature of this system was that the school could instantly start benefitting from its suite of out-of-the-box business productivity applications.

In addition to traditional digital telephony solutions, it presents features such as unified voice messaging with email synchronisation, voice conferencing, automatic call distribution, hot desking, mobile phone twinning, and automated attendant.

Importantly, we were able to port numbers, ensuring a seamless transition to the new system.

The Benefits

Porting Smithdon’s integrated services digital network (ISDN)-based telephony system to a session initiation protocol (SIP) trunking system enabled a host of operational and performance advantages. It allowed users to place calls over the Internet using voice over Internet Protocol, which translated to significant cost savings. Furthermore, as the school did not have to make a huge upfront investment, it was able to realise expedited return on investment, right from the first month of billing.

Its full suite of conferencing and collaboration solutions also offered improved mobility and accessibility to users, which enhanced the client’s productivity. As the system connects easily to users’ mobile devices, it provides them with on-the-go access to the school’s on-premise telephony system.


It was quite stressful when the storm damaged our phone lines so close to the children returning from the summer holidays. VSL were not only able to respond quickly but by moving our telephony from ISDN to SIP we now also benefit from a cost saving.

Henry Pickett, Smithdon High School.

Find out more

If you would like to find out how your school or academy could benefit from an upgraded telephone and internet connection, get in touch today.

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