Schools might overlook the volume of printed signs and notices around campus. But when they take a moment, schools will find that they’re all over the campus.
The benefits of digital signage for schools can eliminate many of the negative impacts of printed signs and notices and bring features that printed signage can never achieve.
Digital Signage for Schools is Environmentally Friendly
Digital signage reduces paper and ink consumption as printed notices and signs are replaced with indoor or outdoor video displays. Moreover, printed signs and notices produce waste. In essence, every page posted on a bulletin board will go into the recycling bin, and every sign with outdated information will need to be replaced.
It Lasts for Years Before Replacement
The benefits of digital signage can be quantified. LED and LCD video displays have a lifetime of about 100,000 hours. If a school runs its signs 24 hours per day, this translates into a lifetime of about 11 years and 5 months. However, except for emergencies, most digital signs can be run for about ten hours per day. At this rate of use, a digital sign can last over 27 years before replacement.
It Saves Energy
In addition to being more durable than printed signs, digital signs consume a relatively low amount of power compared to paper notices. A digital sign used ten hours per day consumes about 150 kilowatt-hours per year. This level of power consumption produces about 150 pounds of carbon pollution per year.
It Reduces Paper Consumption
Carbon pollution is roughly equal to the carbon released when manufacturing 100 reams of paper, which deprives the environment about four trees that act as carbon sinks. The piles of paper represent a drop in the bucket for many schools when the total number of printed copies are added up.
Some school information that can be displayed on digital signages include:
- Announcements: Flyers announcing school activities, sporting events, extracurricular clubs, job openings, concerts, speakers, and other events
- Promotions: Student discounts and fundraising opportunities
- Campus maps: Replace printed campus maps with a centrally located campus map display
Replacing thousands of copies with digital signage can substantially reduce a school’s energy consumption and carbon footprint. In addition to the school’s own sense of environmental responsibility, this sets an excellent example for students.
Digital Signage for Schools Can Promote Safety
Digital signage for schools can provide school security personnel a tool for communicating urgent and current information. Content for digital signs can be edited or changed at any time from a central location. This allows real-time announcements and warnings to be distributed to digital signs. Although they are often used in combination with text messages, voice calls, and emails, digital signs have the benefit of providing information instantly to students, faculty, and staff who are already on campus.
How Digital Signage Can Be Used During Emergencies
The issue that comes immediately to mind is school shootings. During an active shooter situation or drill, digital signs can direct people away from danger and toward safety. During safety incidents, location-based digital signs can be used to coordinate a public response with police tactics. For example, messages can be targeted to some buildings directing people to shelter in place, while messages to other buildings can direct people to evacuate.
Information distributed through digital signs during natural disasters, severe weather, and special events, such as VIP visits, can help students, faculty, and staff stay safe and remain clear of emergency responders. After an incident or drill, digital signs can also be used to transmit an “all clear” message so viewers can return to their normal routine.
Students Can Get Creative with Digital Signage for Schools
Digital signs can provide students with educational opportunities. As a technological platform, students can use the hardware and software that control digital sign systems to learn about digital communications, data security, and computer networking.
As a communication medium, digital signs can incorporate all forms of communication, including written copy, graphic design, video, and sound, to present effective messaging. Digital signs can provide a platform for student-generated content for journalism, marketing, creative writing, photography, or art.
Digital Signage Can Also Help Schools Produce Revenue
Digital signs also provide schools with a commercial opportunity. Schools can promote their own paid services, such as concessions at sporting events, and sell advertising and sponsorship opportunities to outside businesses. By renting virtual display space to businesses, a school may be able to offset some or all the costs associated with acquiring and operating its digital signage.
A digital sign is a communication platform, and, as such, its uses are only limited by the creativity of the schools and students using it. For help selecting digital signage for schools as well as software for creating and managing content, contact DME.