Wren helps Texas schools through TCPN partnership

State's schools among highest in country tapping benefits from cooperative purchasing network

ATLANTA, August 18, 2009 – Going into the 2009-2010 school year, Wren, a provider of tools to provide safe learning environments for schools, will continue to work with The Cooperative Purchasing Network (TCPN), a national governmental purchasing cooperative, to increase the efficiency and convenience of schools purchasing security solutions. Wren’s TCPN contract was originally awarded in 2007 after the high performance vendor participated in a competitive bid process and committed to providing the best pricing, terms and conditions to schools and government agencies.

“At a time when communities nationally face cutbacks on a local level due to the recession, schools are challenged to continue providing high standards of education and safe learning environments while facing budget difficulties,” said Andrew Wren, president of Wren Solutions. “Organizations like TCPN help schools obtain the resources they need – from technology to construction – while maintaining lower costs and saving administrators’ valuable time by streamlining the purchasing process.”

Case-In-Point: Water Valley School District Scores Budget Benefits, Time Savings with TCPN

James Ditmore, director of technology for Water Valley School District, is one Texas school administrator who experienced the benefits of both TCPN and Wren’s network video solutions. The small district is home to 350 students in grades K-12 in mid-west Texas.

“I’m a one-man show and budgets are tight. So, anything that saves time and conserves resources helps me perform my job better. I was able to purchase the most technologically-advanced school security system available – IP video – because it was offered at a competitive price through TCPN,” said Ditmore. “And, it only took me one phone call to make the purchase, versus going through a time-intensive bidding process.”

Texas Schools Ahead of Curve for States Benefiting from Cooperatives

According to Susan MacDonald, national marketing manager for TCPN, Texas schools are ahead of the curve compared to other states in experiencing the economic and efficiency benefits of utilizing cooperatives.

“One of our highest regions tapping the TCPN network is Texas, which signifies to me that the state’s school administrators are very well educated from first-hand experience, through school-to-school peer discussions and general knowledge on the immense economic and productivity benefits that result from cooperative purchasing. In the last year and also moving forward, we are continuing to focus resources on educating other states on the same advantages of cooperative purchasing that Texas has experienced,” said MacDonald.

Wren: Texas School Survey Revealed Budget Concerns in 2007

Since joining the cooperative, Wren has become a trusted network video solutions provider to the education market and has conducted research on the security and budgetary challenges Texas’ schools face to improve its offerings.

Wren’s Texas School Security Survey found that in 2007, administrators considered video to be the single most important tool in securing school environments. However, budgets for investing in newer security technologies were tight at that time, with only about a quarter of schools expecting a security budget increase in 2008. A majority of the schools, 78 percent, also responded being only “somewhat prepared” to deal with grave security situations, like an armed intruder on campus.

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