As with other aspects of life, education has undergone tremendous changes with the rise of the internet. Teachers and students increasingly are using classroom PCs and the web for research as part of the regular curriculum, and they're also using web-based applications to support instruction. For Georgia's DeKalb County Schools, however, these trends were causing a problem: The communications infrastructure that provided access to these applications and the internet was too slow to serve the growing traffic volume.

Based in Decatur, Georgia (a suburb of Atlanta), the DeKalb County School System is the second largest school system in Georgia,...

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