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Ep.3 IT Basics 101 with Fusion Networks

Today on Early Childhood Chats we sat down Zac Garsik the Vice President of Operations at Fusion Networks to talk about IT Basics in Early Childhood settings and how you can increase your programs #datasecurity.

Early Childhood Chats is hosted by Andrew Roszak - JD, MPA, EMT-P Executive Director at the Institute for Childhood Preparedness. The Institute for Childhood Preparedness is proud to use its decades of experience to offer comprehensive and expert disaster and emergency preparedness trainings live in-person, via webinar, and on-demand online.

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whoa well hello everybody Welcome Back

to Early Childhood chats we're excited

to have you with us on the podcast we've

got my good friend Zach garc here from

Fusion networks we're gonna be talking

about it Basics and Zach I gotta tell

you it has become a big part of Early

Childhood absolutely so tell us who you

are tell us about some of the work that

you do and say hi to the folks out there

hello everybody uh my name is Zach gari

I work I'm the vice president of

operations for Fusion networks and we

are an internet and Telo services

provider and we specialize in providing

schools uh internet that gives them the

resources and the speeds that they need

for all the services that they need to

provide to the students in the staff

today so obviously the pandemic massive

massive need for technology absolutely

what are you kind of seeing now that the

pandemic has has weaned itself are we

still pretty reliant on technology even

more okay um the need for people to be

able to work remotely exposed um the the

needs for better quality internet

services um you know a lot of these

schools just get the basics of what they

need home quality internet and it's not

reliable not consistent and you start to

see now that when people are remote um

all the applications that the schools

need you have to have better quality

services and the problem is the people

who are the decision makers for these

schools uh have backgrounds in finance

Administration facilities and they don't

know the right questions to ask or their

needs are to be able to get the right

services for their schools uh so what we

kind of focus on to help the our clients

and and potential clients is to help

them give them the basic education they

need for their services uh so they can

ask the right questions um hold their it

people accountable uh often it'll happen

is your IT staff will hold you hostage

uh because they're the ones who know

everything yeah uh and so being able to

educate yourselves is just becoming more

and more important for these decision

makers at the schools and it's tough

because they don't have the time for it

right they have to do their budgets they

have to do their trainings they have to

get their staff equipped uh but it's

really worth the investment now of

getting the basic education of it so

that you can understand what needs to be

done uh it it directly impacts your

school environment uh one of the people

in the sessions we were talking about

over the over the the event here was uh

there's major issues now with staff

bringing their own devices to the

schools laptops computers and it's

compromising uh the networks in the

schools and is actually leading to

issues with children uh you know staff

innocently giving uh students their

phone to play something and now all of a

sudden they're going to an inappropriate

website and it can cause huge issues so

once you have those basic education and

understanding of the basics of

Technology you can now start holding

your staff accountable having the right

questions having the right discussions

you know how do we provide these

services to our staff families and all

that and it's it's just a good

conversation to start having now um

because like you said it's becoming more

and more reliant on on technology uh you

you're looking at everything now is an

app these days yeah oh my goodness a lot

of bandwidth needed for all that stuff I

would think exactly right exactly so

what would you say are the biggest kind

of missteps are some of the biggest I

guess mistakes might be the better word

like you go in you work with a client

you're starting to dig around their

Network their internet you're just like

oh my gosh I can't believe they're doing

ab or C like what does that kind of look

like so I think the biggest m misstep is

not addressing it we often go in and we

see that these the school and the staff

has been suffering with poor

connectivity whether it's a poor

internet service or poor Wi-Fi for years

years yeah and it's something that could

very simply be resolved with the right

technology and the right product um and

then also not understanding uh how eate

works so not everybody knows but there

are um charges on every single internet

Bell if you ever pull out your cell

phone bill okay the federal government

actually has a little tax on there and

then they take that money and they use

it to provide funding for schools

specifically to get quality internet

services um so many of the

administrators or decision makers aren't

even aware of the program uh the great

thing especially for Head Start is you

can sometimes get covered up to 90% % of

your internet service wow through the

program that allows you to get a better

quality service that allows you to get a

more bandwidth to be able to provide the

service that you need across the board

but actually save you money compared to

what you were paying previously um so

the lack of information sometimes uh is

is the other big misstep so how do

people kind of find out if they're

eligible or enter into that or I'm sure

there's probably some websites you're

eate okay you definitely want to get

connected with an eate consultant okay

um quite a few good ones that have been

here at the event uh and we can refer

people to them if they need to but a

good eay consultant is going to go with

you uh get through all your financials

to make sure you qualify get make sure

that your student population allows you

to qualify and then they're going to

help you get all your applications in uh

and they'll guide you through the

process of making sure that you're

getting what you need for your

technology okay um there's actually two

separate categories in E rate there's

category one which covers your internet

services and then there's category too

which also will cover parts of your

network and there's some very very

specifics um and that's why you would

want to discuss with your e consultant

but you can sometimes get your in

network Wi-Fi connectivity U firewall

connectivity covered under those

programs um and the management of it and

a lot of people just don't know and so

wow that information is out there I mean

that I would think that bill could be

kind of substantial every month if you

can get some of that covered that would

be a big very significant so talk to me

about in these terms get thrown a lot

around a lot so you know you think about

goash when this internet started we had

dialup internet y then we kind of had

people moving over to I guess cable

based like it would come in the same way

you could watch television correct uh

we've got people on um you know copper

we got people on fiber Y what does all

this stuff mean what's the best one

explain it break it 101 stuff what does

that mean uh so kind of the standard

right now that most people are going to

be exposed to is cable modems cable

internet because that's what you have at

your house sure um the difficulty with

that is it is a small business class

product uh and it's considered best

effort so anyone who's ever had problems

with their home internet knows uh they

just do their best to get your services

back up and running and so that can be

tough for schools because they can't

afford to be down right um so the next

level up from business class services

are going to be Enterprise Services the

Enterprise Services they actually

guarantee your service so if they have

downtime you'll actually get a refund

um but it's much much more reliable so

the likelihood of going down is is less

likely uh that is going to be provided

either over a copper wire um or over a

fiber cable okay now fiber is usually

the way it's provided because it allows

you to get a better connection over

longer distances uh and it improves

what's called latency um so a common

misconception today and everyone sees it

every ad ad you ever see for internet is

bandwidth is the speed of your internet

right so I have a 500 Meg connection at

home and that's how fast my internet is

okay it's actually not the way it works

um your bandwidth is kind of how wide

the highway is and how many cars you

could fit on the highway at one time

okay but what actually controls the

speed of the internet is something

called latency and latency is almost

like the speed limit of the highway I

it's how fast the information that

you're sending to the internet gets

there and comes back um so Enterprise

services will actually give you better

latency and that better latency will

give you an improved experience overall

um in case in fact you can actually

sometimes have lower bandwith at a

cheaper price on an Enterprise circuit

than you would need for a cable modem or

business class circuit um so the quality

of let's say a 100 Meg Enterprise

circuit would actually outperform a 500

Meg cable modem potentially depending

upon what you're doing and how Reliant

you are on that latency so latency I'm

guessing is some kind of distance or

connection or something to what other

server like what correct okay yeah so

when you go to a website or an

application um you're actually sending

information over the internet to a

server somewhere to a computer somewhere

got you know the joke is that the cloud

isn't really a cloud it's just somebody

else's computer okay uh so when you're

connecting there and so the faster that

your information can get there and come

back the better your quality excuse the

better your experience will be sure um

so if you're ever you know doing budget

at the end of the month filing grades at

the end of the month and you're sitting

there struggling because it's just slow

um it could be something just a simple

as improving the latency to your to your

connection well there you go everybody

talks about bandwidth all the time yeah

big difference exactly so when folks get

with Fusion networks kind of talk us

through that process what what can you

do for folks how do they engage with you

like what what does that whole thing

look like yeah so one of our uh biggest

uh things that we do is we actually will

partner with our our customers

especially with the schools um so we'll

come in we'll do an audit to see what

they actually need we'll help them kind

of figure out what their needs are which

is part of the eate process and so we'll

also work with youra consultant okay uh

but then we'll also assist you with the

transition uh so we'll come in we'll

make sure that all your connections are

made properly uh and then any changes

that need to be made on your network

will actually assist with that um so

many schools don't have it staff right

uh so we'll actually come in and consult

with them and help them through the

process now we're not going to be going

through and you know scrubbing viruses

off computers um but we will come in and

do everything we can to make sure that

the transition goes smoothly that you're

educated on what we're actually doing so

that you can um be able to talk to it

and speak to you know Administration on

on the details of what we're doing and

then we'll uh even post more or after

install we'll work with you to make sure

that it's doing everything that you need

um we monitor their services as well so

if there are any issues or outages

usually we'll know before the school

even does wow so I mean you're kind of a

One-Stop shop for correct all

connectivity I guess it would be that's

absolutely right uh you know it's

interesting to me if you look and some

of the states still have licensing

requirements that require a landline but

boy oh boy as I travel the country the

landlines are kind of going like the

dinosaurs so most people are now

switching to voiceover Internet Protocol

viip what kind of impact does that have

on a network I would think that those

are probably taking some resources I

don't know absolutely uh so phones don't

use a tremendous amount of bandwidth uh

but it it can impact a network uh so you

you definitely need to have an audit

done to make sure that the network can

handle it uh but it makes a huge

difference um when your phone system is

tied to your building so the old on

on-prem systems the big boxes in the

corner that you know generate enough

heat that you don't have to turn the

heat on during the the winter months um

are tied to the building so during the

pandemic schools started realizing that

they needed to be able to have

communication with their teachers who

are remote

and they started relying heavily on uh

their cell phones and it caused a lot of

issues now with the hosted voice

platforms now we can actually phones

just need internet electricity so we can

actually take those services and provide

them anywhere wow uh the other thing as

well is we can um we host everything for

them so it's if there's an issue at the

building uh power outage or they have to

leave the building what happens now when

parents need to reach the the students

right or if there is uh some kind of

event in the school where they have to

vacate the building they lose the

ability to commun communicate through

the phone system sure with our hosted

voice platforms you can communicate from

anywhere so we can have cell phone apps

uh we have uh wireless phones that you

can take anywhere with you wow so now in

in unfortunate disaster scenarios

whether it's you know active shooter

situation or power outage or fire in the

building will allow you to maintain

communication to your step and to your

parents through the phone system and you

don't have to worry about the building

being the connection point we take care

of that fly that's really cool and I

know some of the teachers are look

they're just a bit reluctant and

understandably so like I don't

necessarily want every parent having my

personal cell phone number exactly so it

sounds like through this service you can

actually utilize some of that technology

to corre almost be blinded or something

like that yeah so the applications that

run on cell phones and tablets actually

allow you to make and receive phone

calls from the school's phone number W

so whether it's a school provided uh

device or a h parent or staff provided

device just put the application on and

allows them to communicate as if they're

from the school so it does add a layer

of privacy but in a way that allows you

to have

communication kind of anywhere which is

which is you know an excellent it's a

requirement these days you know yeah

absolutely because you don't necessarily

want to share your personal private cell

phone with everybody I mean that's yeah

I can understand there's some concerns

about that right so we're here obviously

at the New York State Head Start

Association conference I guess people

say what's Fusion Network's doing here

at the conference what are you guys up

to uh so we're trying to connect with uh

with everybody um you know kind of what

I was talking about earlier is we we

really focus on educating the schools um

so helping the staff and administrators

just understand what needs to be done

how to communicate how to ask the right

questions and then hopefully obviously

we want to provide them their internet

and hosted voice Services uh but it's

been a great conference we it's been

good being here um it was great doing

some of the the sessions as well and

connecting with everybody and uh we're

excited looking forward to being back

next year and being in stwn oh Virgin

Islands will be fun I'm glad you guys

are coming so I know you you're doing

schools you're doing Head Starts what

about other big you know nonprofits or

churches or what is kind of your limit

there what your sectors you're in so any

any business that relies heavily on

Internet services is kind of about

category so what I say is if if your

internet goes down and your business

goes down

that's the type of services we provide

so we're not going to provide servic for

a barber shop uh but we focus a lot on

um providing nonprofits and so a lot of

the large churches and schools but then

also financial sector uh and then also a

lot of medical sector so we have a lot

of large medical clients and uh it's

it's been very good uh good time of year

for us oh congratulations and thank you

so much for being here absolutely Zach

for Fusion networks if you want more

information how do we get a hold of you

sure you can reach us at Fusion that's our website

um and then you can also uh do I get my

email address sure well if you'd like to

so you can always reach out to us at

salesfusion and we'll be

able to help you out wonderful well thank you again for being really appreciate it thanks everybody

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2 commenti

06 giu

Schools need more than just basic home-quality internet. Reliable, enterprise-level connections ensure that all necessary applications run smoothly without tunnel rush downtime.

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05 giu

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