New school phone service to save thousands of dollars

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Marshall County Schools' telephone service has been changed from a direct phone system connection to one that goes through the Internet.

And the change is expected to save the county school budget thousands of dollars during the first year, according to a spokeswoman at the schools' Central Office.

During its Feb. 9 meeting, the Marshall County Board of Education voted to transition the school system's phone system to VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) via ENA Dialtone Connect, a move that will save the school system thousands of dollars annually.

The transition was made possible when the system's contract with AT&T was coming to an end, and ENA (Education Networks of America) provided a very competitive bid; the annual savings will be in excess of $20,000.

With Voice over Internet Protocol: Calls are transmitted over the internet; there are no long distance charges; and when a phone has to be added, the school system's technology staff can install an internet drop...otherwise, an outside vendor would have to be called for this work.

This change in the phone system has also caused some changes in phone numbers in the Cornersville schools.

To reach the main office of Cornersville Elementary School, dial 536-0480.

Cornersville Middle and High schools' number is 246-4170.

Callers may be required to dial 931 before these numbers, but they should not be charged a long-distance fee.

As of Wednesday, Aug. 1, phone equipment has been replaced at the Board of Education, Spot Lowe Vocational Center, and the transportation and maintenance departments.

After the first year of service, a study will be conducted to determine the cost effectiveness of the program before phasing in other sites.