IBM Canada Ltd.

IBM Canada Ltd.

November 23, 2006 11:02 ET

Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows School District Improves Parent-Teacher Communication, Reduces Costs With IBM

MAPLE RIDGE, BRITISH COLUMBIA and MARKHAM, ONTARIO--(CCNMatthews - Nov. 23, 2006) - A new IP-based telephone system from IBM (NYSE:IBM) is improving parent-teacher communication in Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows School District, while lowering maintenance requirements and costs.

IBM designed and implemented the new Cisco telephone system at Pitt Meadows Secondary School in Pitt Meadows, British Columbia. The implementation at the school is a pilot project for the board, which is considering installing similar systems in other schools in the future.

"Our old system was more than 20-years old - difficult and expensive to maintain, with few of the modern features we need for effective communication", said Quirina Gamblen, IT Manager, Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows School District. "The new system includes features like individual voicemail for teachers, making it easier for administrators, teaching and support staff to respond to calls effectively; the new system will reduce maintenance costs."

The project at Pitt Meadows included the installation of 92 IP phones, as well as backend hardware and networking infrastructure. The project was completed in August 2006.

"As Maple Ridge continues to roll out IP telephony in their schools, they're going to reap tremendous benefits such as improved communication within their district, and increased operational efficiency with lower maintenance costs," said Marc Seeman, IBM Canada's national integrated communications executive.

About Maple Ridge School Board

School District No. 42 encompasses the communities of Maple Ridge, population of 60,000 and Pitt Meadows, population of 20,000. Maple Ridge lies on the north shore of the Fraser River nestled against the Coast Mountains. The Maple Ridge community consists of rural areas such as Ruskin, Whonnock, Webster's Corners, fast growing suburban areas of development in the east near Albion and the central core area which includes the historic town of Haney. The district of Pitt Meadows is located on the north bank of the Fraser River between Port Coquitlam and Maple Ridge. Pitt Meadows consists of a large rural area still held in the agricultural land reserve (ALR) as well as a suburban, bedroom community of Vancouver. The Katzie reserve is located in Pitt Meadows.

Serving the communities of Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows, School District No. 42 meets the educational needs of approximately 15,000 students from kindergarten to grade 12, as well as providing a wide range of educational services for adult learners.

Two cornerstones of the districts' educational philosophy are its commitment to providing educational choice, and for its inclusive, local approach to special education. A commitment to life-long learning is evident in the many programs and services provided by the Community Education department, and the district has developed trades training partnerships with colleges and universities to meet the needs of students seeking careers in technical and skilled trades.

For more information about School District No. 42, go to

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